Objectives: To describe the reach of the Heads Up "Concussion in Sports: What You Need to Know," online course and to assess knowledge change.
Participants: Individuals who have taken the free online course since its inception in May 2010 to July 2013.
Design: Descriptive, uncontrolled, before and after study design.
Main measures: Reach is measured by the number of unique participants and the number of times the course was completed by state and sport coached and the rate of participation per 100,000 population by state. Knowledge change is measured by the distribution and mean of pre- and posttest scores by sex, primary role (e.g., coach, student, and parent), and sport coached.
Results: Between May 2010 and July 2013, the online concussion course was completed 819,223 times, reaching 666,026 unique participants, including residents from all US states and the District of Columbia. The distribution of overall scores improved from pre- to posttests, with 21% answering all questions correctly on the pretest and 60% answering all questions correctly on the posttest.
Conclusion: Online training can be effective in reaching large audiences and improving knowledge about emerging health and safety issues such as concussion awareness.