Armelia Sari Widyarman, Carolina D. Marpaung, M. Ihsan Rizal, Ciptadhi Tri Oka B, Nurani Hayati, Endang W. Bachtiar


The high number of positive cases of COVID-19 in Indonesia has become a concern for the Indonesian government. Effective approaches are needed to familiarize the population with government instructions. This study administered a remote online education program to evaluate the effectiveness of this approach in changing people’s physical distancing behaviors. This research was to increase people’s knowledge and awareness of the importance of physical distancing as one of the government main instructions for mitigating the spread of COVID-19. To analyze the impact of online education on increasing community knowledge and awareness of social distancing during pandemic COVID-19. This cross-sectional study administered online education via video conferencing on the Zoom (San Jose, California) application. Forty-four community leaders from four districts in the Jakarta Capital City area joined the online education program. The respondents were asked to fill out a questionnaire containing multiple questions presented using a Google Docs (Mountain View, California) to assess their knowledge of COVID-19 both before and after engaging in the online education program. Online Pre- and post-tests were performed on a 32-item questionnaire, including three demographic items (age, gender, and occupation), eight items on knowledge and attitudes toward COVID-19, nine items on virus transmission, nine items on COVID-19 prevention, and five items on practices for the prevention of COVID-19 infection. We examined the validity of the questionnaire using appropriate predefined variables with a Cronbach’s alpha of 0.68. A paired t-test was used to investigate the impact of the online education on the level of knowledge of COVID-19 pre- and post-test with statistical software (SPSS v. 25). The findings revealed that knowledge increased after the intervention with the online education program. The number of participants with correct responses to the knowledge-related questions had significantly increased (p < 0.05) after the intervention. The knowledge of the respondents regarding the virus and attitude had significantly increased after the online education (83.43% vs 89.10%, p < 0.05). The knowledge of the respondents regarding virus transmission also significantly increased after online education (65.83% vs 85.56%, p < 0.05). Furthermore, most of respondents’ knowledge regarding virus prevention was reasonably good (83.89%). However, after the intervention, there was an increase in their knowledge regarding prevention (90.56%), but it was not statistically significant (p > 0.0). Our key findings in this study indicated that our participants earlier on had less knowledge regarding COVID-19 transmission, in which after taking the online education given to the participants, there were significant increase of knowledge. Online education programs are an effective way of increasing people’s knowledge, awareness, and behavior toward COVID-19. This program is encouraged to be adapted in other areas in Indonesia with a high incidence of COVID-19. However, there are some limitations of this study regarding the sample size and study area. Further studies with larger sample size and broad region of Indonesia are warranted to confirm this result.

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