Documentation:Learning Design/Community Assessment

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Template: Individual Field Trip

Activity type: Culminating

Linked activities: Preparation readings on community nursing; presentation of Community Health Promotion Model

Interaction types: Student with environment,student with self, student to student.

Facilitation requirements: monitor discussion forum, provide feedback

Activity Patterns: research, reflect, share, compare/contrast, reflect and respond

Activity tasks: research community, reflect on community, prepare summary, share summary, respond to others summaries

Learning Environment requirements: Access to a community and other learners

Tools Support discussion forums, nice if facilitated photo sharing.

Discussion 5: Sharing a Modified Community Assessment of a Local Neighbourhood

This activity will be evaluated as part of Assignment 1. Detailed instructions for participation in Discussions are included in your Assignments.

Each of you will perform a modified community assessment of a local neighbourhood. Next, you will share a summary of your assessment by posting it for online group discussion. In this way, you and your peers will discover what everybody learned from doing these modified community assessments. You will also learn more about where each of you live and the diversity among different communities or neighbourhoods. Your Open Learning Faculty Member will be monitoring and facilitating this discussion.

Part A: Observing the Community

Your observations of the area or neighbourhood you select will be based on the three elements that contribute to a healthy community:

  1. Structure or geographic locale
  2. People
  3. Social system

Observe the area or neighbourhood you’ve selected by driving or walking through its more populated areas. You are encouraged to take photos and document observations in your personal notebook.

Look at the geographic space of this neighbourhood by looking at it from the perspective of being a visitor. For example, how would you describe it to a stranger? Is it quiet or noisy? Crowded?

What kinds of buildings are located here? Single dwellings (houses), apartments, condominiums, or senior housing? Or is it a business district that consists of tall, cement buildings? Or a variety of buildings, including business offices, stores, and/or apartment dwellings?

Any green spaces like parks, gardens, boulevards? Paved or gravel streets? Any traffic? Any unique physical features? Is there a river, beach, or forest nearby for walks, hiking, or bicycling?

Look at the people. Any diversity in age groups, cultural or religious background? Observe how people dress, and how they interact with each other, if at all? What are the people doing at the time that you are observing the neighbourhood?

Look at the social system. Are there any community services? These may include a hospital, clinic, pharmacy, grocery store, schools, park or playground? Any police and fire departments? Any religious organizations (i.e., churches, synagogues, temples or mosques), community and recreation services, or government buildings?

For every service located determine its accessibility. Areas to address include hours of service, location (i.e., traffic and public transportation access and safety), adequate lighting, and whether or not the service is user-friendly (i.e., are these services well-used, is this area old and established, or a new subdivision?). Take notes on your findings.

Part B: Formulating Your Perceptions of the Community

Your perceptions are based on the observations you made in Part A. What are some general statements you can make about the health of this community, when you compare your observations with the various elements that contribute to community health? What are its strengths and barriers to being a healthy neighbourhood? For example, what elements contribute or hinder well-being? In terms of any observed health-related programs, what is the level of participation?

Part C: Preparing a Summary

Prepare a summary of your completed modified community assessment and a reflection about this activity. In your summary, you will:

  1. Describe the neighbourhood based on your observations and perceptions, including structure or geographic location, people and social system.
  2. Identify any health concerns about the community or for specific population groups. In the latter, vulnerable populations consist of individuals who are likely to develop heath problems or depend on others for health care, such as the elderly or street youth.
  3. Reflect on what you have learned from doing this modified community assessment, and ask yourself what skills and strategies you would need when working with a community or specific population groups to address the health concerns you have identified.

Part D: Discussing Your Findings

Post your summary to the discussion titled "Modified Community Assessment." Read all of the summaries and reflect on the following:

  1. Are there any similarities in the neighbourhoods described?
  2. Are there any similarities in identified health concerns?
  3. Are there any similarities about perceived expertise necessary when working to promote health in the community, or with specific target populations?
  4. Read everybody’s submitted responses about their chosen neighbourhoods, and observe whether there were any shared concerns related to working with a community. Make a note of these concerns for future reference when learning about specific strategies to facilitate strong relationships among group or community members.
  5. Respond to at least one description of a neighbourhood by sharing at least three significant things you learned about how this neighbourhood promotes health.