The food environment is increasingly thought to have a major influence on eating behavior. University campuses offer a unique opportunity to study the extent to which food environments influence eating, but such studies must be based on reliable measures. The objective of this project is to use a standard and reliable instrument, the Nutrition Environment Measures Survey (NEMS), to describe dining venues on the Cal Poly campus, and to compare Cal Poly food stores with off-campus alternatives. The five student investigators on this multidisciplinary, team-based project will undergo training to use standard protocols to apply the NEMS to 18 campus dining venues, two campus food stores, and ~30 off‐campus supermarkets, groceries, and convenience stores in San Luis Obispo. Repeat assessments will allow for evaluation of inter‐rater and test-retest reliability. Statistical analyses will include calculating prevalence of healthy and unhealthy constructs from the NEMS, comparing overall scores across venues, and comparing scores between on- and off-campus stores. Findings will be used as a basis for future work to investigate the potential of modifying the Cal Poly food environment to facilitate students’ healthful food choices.
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