Submitted to: Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/1/2007
Publication Date: 2/1/2007
Citation: Thompson, V.J., Bachman, C.M., Baranowski, T., Cullen, K. 2007. Self-efficacy and norm measures for lunch fruit and vegetable consumption are reliable and valid among fifth grade students. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 39:2-7. Interpretive Summary: Approximately one third of a school child's food intake occurs at school. Although the national school lunch program provides a generally healthy meal, students often make poor choices from foods available. Many investigators want to understand influences on students' lunch choices which may be different from influences on other meals in other locations. This study developed and psychometrically tested measures to self efficacy and perceived social norms in regard to elementary school students lunch time fruit and vegetable consumption. The measures were determined to have acceptable reliability and validity, and are now ready for used in other studies.
Technical Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To determine the reliability and validity of a questionnaire measuring fruit and vegetable (FV) self-efficacy and social norms during school lunch among 5th graders. DESIGN: In this cross-sectional study, students completed lunch food records and a psychosocial questionnaire measuring school lunch FV self-efficacy and social norms regarding consumption during the fall and spring semesters. Test-retest reliability was assessed between fall and spring semesters. The measurement model was cross-validated in the spring data. SETTING: One middle school in Houston, Texas. PARTICIPANTS: 275 fifth graders in the 1998 fall semester and 262 of these fifth graders in the 1999 spring semester. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: FV consumption and psychosocial variables. ANALYSES: Principal components analyses, confirmatory factor analyses and bivariate correlations. RESULTS: Three scales were identified: Fruit Self-Efficacy, Vegetable Self-Efficacy, and FV Social Norms. FV self-efficacy were positively correlated with low-fat vegetable and fruit consumption. Social norms were positively correlated with total vegetable, low-fat vegetable, fruit and total FV consumption. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Self-efficacy and norms for eating FV at school lunch are related to lunch FV consumption. Increasing self-efficacy and social norms about consuming FV at school appears to be important targets to improve FV consumption.