Website That Focuses on Health Consumer Education Term Paper

Pages: 5 (1414 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Teaching

Health Website

Smoking cessation is one of the hottest health topics in the United States today, with numerous pharmaceutical companies marketing products that claim to help smokers quit. Both governmental and non-governmental organizations are promoting smoking cessation as an essential feature of personal and public health. Legislation prohibiting smoking in public places is also assisting stop-smoking campaigns. Therefore, a government-sponsored Web site should be evaluated for qualitative, quantitative, and technical/design characteristics: to determine how effective the site is and how useful it might be for Americans.

Demonstrating the extent of stop-smoking campaigns, the smokefree.gov Web site is sponsored by several governmental and para-governmental organizations including the Centers for Disease Control, the National Institutes of Health, the United States Department of Health and Human Services, and the National Cancer Institute. In the following report, the smokefree.gov Web site is evaluated according to qualitative criteria and the technical / design characteristics.

Qualitative

Purpose

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The purpose of the Website is implied in the title "smokefree.gov." Also, the front page of the Web site includes a list of "Learn how to..." menu items, the first of which is "Learn how to quit smoking." Others include "Learn how to get expert help," and "Learn how to find studies" that back up quitting as being essential for health and well-being. The "About smokefree.gov" section offers a more direct and comprehensive explanation of the purpose of the Web site, which is "intended to help you or someone you care about quit smoking." Also, the "About smokefree.gov" section lists what types of content might be found on the Web site and mentions the site's main sponsors.

Term Paper on Website That Focuses on Health Consumer Education Assignment

One of the most helpful resources included on the smokefree.gov Web site is an "Online Guide to Quitting." The online guide is also one of the items on the Web site that is featured most prominently because it is easy to read, concise, and includes interactive content like quizzes and areas to brainstorm ideas. A solid list of print resources, posted to the Web site in PDF format, offer a wealth of information for consumers in both English and Spanish. Because the information contained on smokefree.gov is backed up by a litany of reputable government institutions, Web site content is trustworthy. At the same time, the Web site does not include any scientific publications that might bolster the validity of its content.

The Web site "smokefree.gov" lacks scientific data to back up the claim that quitting smoking is always beneficial to health. Smoking is simply assumed to be detrimental to health. Because the health risks related to smoking are well-known and widely published, however, the authors of the Web site do not need to incorporate scientific data or back up Web site content with references to scholarly research. Moreover, the purpose of the smokefree.gov web site is not to disseminate medical research but to help consumers quit smoking for good.

Writing Style, Vocabulary, and Audience

The writing style is simple and straightforward, geared toward a general American public of all ages and ethnic groups. Inclusion of Spanish-language material makes the Web site accessible to more readers than it would if all the content were only in English. Vocabulary is deliberately common, to welcome readers of all ages and educational backgrounds. The overly simplified language is not tempered by any scholarly pieces of writing or peer-reviewed journal studies that would offer research to back up the information contained on the Web site. However, the Web site is obviously geared not for a scholarly audience but to a general audience of people who want to quit smoking, and thus the writing style and vocabulary are appropriate for the Web site's intended audience. Many readers may also be of school-age. Given that young children and adolescents might be part of the target audience for the Web site, the vocabulary choices are appropriate.

Fry's Readability

On the Fry's Readability scale, the grade level is about five, based on the use of short sentences, common, everyday language, and frequent subject headers (London, Rankin, & Stallings, 2005, p.248-249. Writing style uses proper grammar and is mature and sophisticated while at the same time being informal.

Contact Agency

Contact information is easy to find, with a frame on each page linking to the five main governmental… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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