Rewind and Reflect

This final blog post was jointly written by Twana, Melinda and Stephanie.

Start of the tracks

Source

Welcome to our final blog post. The journey of creating our “Medical Terminology Course Prototype” over the last few months could be described in a variety ways. It was a journey that included learning, challenges and at times frustration. Other days were filled with optimism, brainstorming, creativity, team building and collegiality.

Image result for medical terminology

Source

Medical Terminology for the Pre-Nursing student was a course that our group decided to develop to foster success for students entering any general nursing program. Each of us as nursing instructors have seen deficiencies among our various nursing programs regarding this content. Due to the ever expanding and complex knowledge requirements that nursing students require, they are provided with minimal curriculum hours that specifically address medical terminology. Medical terminology, in most nursing programs, is delivered to students over a few short hours where students are introduced to the basic components of the medical language. From there it is the expectation that students Image result for nursing puzzledbecome fluent in the medical language as an adjunct of other courses and clinical experiences. The ability to learn medical terminology is difficult and at times confusing due to the fact that many medical terms are based on Latin, a language that most are unfamiliar with. Picture Source

Throughout the course semester each of us has blogged about our decision to develop such a course and our individual experience with students and their difficulties with the Image result for positive learningmedical language. Further to that discussion our blog posts describe in detail our process of choosing Canvas as our LMS. We underwent numerous growing pains and a steep learning curve on this journey but in the end, we are very proud and confident that our course prototype, after a bit of tweaking based on our peers reviews, could assist nursing students in the attainment of a firm introduction to medical terminology. Picture Source

In the first few weeks and planning phase, we trialled various learning management systems including, Moodle, Brightspace and Canvas.

Image result for winner isFinally, as a team, we jointly decided on Canvas as the LMS for our prototype. Through each of our past blog posts over the course of the semester we discuss the reason why we chose Canvas but ultimately it was because we found it to be the most user friendly of the three LMS systems and wanted to try something that none of us had worked with before. Although some of you as peers blogged about the annoyance of the phone calls from Canvas, we found the support to be exceptional. If we had a question during the project we would email or call and get a response within 24 hours. The “help”Image result for Help link was great and often times watching a quick video would get us up and running if we ran into a glitch. We did find the loading times slow for our content within our modules and perhaps the LMS was not as functional on a smartphone as a computer but overall we would recommend it to others.

Picture Source

We showcased our learning by incorporating a variety of technological tools discussed throughout the semester for our module teaching content. We incorporated flipgrid for
Image result for hold onintroductions to give students a voice and used assessment tools built into the LMS such as quizzes to demonstrate the functions available within the LMS.
Although we thought our prototype was ready to go live we found through constructive peer feedback some things we would change and fix before we would make this happen. Picture Source

 

 

 

First off we want to thank those peers that took the time to provide our group with such thorough and constructive feedback in regards to our course prototype. It was nice to hear Image result for Thank youthat our course was user friendly, easy to navigate and specific to the targeted audience. We appreciated that our viewers found our activities both engaging and student centered. Here are some of the minor things that we would change.

Picture Source

One specific comment that was mentioned in regards to our prototype was that it may be nice to provide users more opportunities to interact and ask questions in a more informal manner, such as through the use of discussion forums. This is a great point, and something that our team did contemplate. We decided against the idea of open and informal discussion forums as our course is asynchronous in nature. After receiving this feedback our group revisited this discussion. We have concluded that an informal Image result for student centered onlinediscussion forum might be a nice component to add to our course to foster a feeling of community among the students. Because this course is designed to be taken before students commence their nursing program, one can assume that many of the students registered in this course will eventually be taking their full-time nursing program together. By allowing students to potentially gain a sense of community and develop relationships prior to actually starting in their course could only foster success and develop a potential peer support system.

Picture Source

Other useful and appreciated feedback was in regards to appearance and ensuring that text size and audio was user friendly. Ensuring text size is at an appropriate size and that screens can be maximised are important pieces of information that would defiantly be addressed if our course were to go live. Furthermore, ensuring audio presentation was delivered in an appropriate form such as screencastify was helpful.

Another thing that we now realize that we could have done a better was explaining our Image result for whyrationale as to why we picked our LMS. Each of us had blogged about this point as to explain as to why we picked Canvas and therefore did not include the rationale in our course syllabus. Here are the links to our past blog posts that describe each of our thoughts and rationals: Twana, Melinda and Stephanie.

Picture Source

We also now realize we could have included additional resources and specific information on our course profile for EAL and Indigenous students that may be enrolled in our course. We did make the assumption that students would have English proficiency and good academic standing in order to be accepted into the nursing programs but did not recognize this within the profile. We would also include some discussion on socioeconomic and cultural considerations as this is something that we did not include. This was consistent feedback and will definitely be taken into consideration.

We appreciated the feedback that recognized the components that were showcased in Image result for appreciated the feedback our ECI 834 learning and the various tools incorporated within our three modules such as screencastify with google slides, adobe spark and voice over PowerPoint. We attempted to demonstrate our knowledge and the functionality of Canvas by using assessment tools (i.e. quizzes) built into the LMS as well as various other tools which increased student interaction prior to implementing our course. Picture Source

 

 

Part of the blog prompt for this week was to include our course profile. Within our course prototype we called this the “syllabus”. We have included what we had in our course below.

EC&I 834: Medical Terminology
Saskatchewan Polytechnic
Spring Semester 2017
Online Course – Asynchronous
Instructors: Stephanie Grand, Melinda Pelletier & Twana White
Email: SMTmedicalterminology@gmail.com

Stephanie Grand

Office: Parkway Rm.252

Twitter:@stephgrand1

More @: Stephanie.grand@saskpolytech.ca

Melinda Pelletier

Office: Parkway Rm. 200.10

Twitter: @sauvepelletier

More @: Melinda.pelletier@saskpolytech.ca

Twana White

Office: Wascana Rm.731.2

Twitter: @twanalw

More @: Twana.white@saskpolytech.ca

Video conferencing will be available to students every Wednesday from 7pm-8pm Central time. Facilitator will be available for questions and any assistance you may need with the course. Please join the conference at this time if you so wish!!

1.0 Course Description and Objectives

1.1 Course Description

This online course examines introductory medical terminology to pre- nursing students entering a nursing education program.

This 8 week mandatory non-credit course will be offered through asynchronous online facilitation upon acceptance and prior to beginning a Saskatchewan Polytechnic Nursing Education Program.

Passing grade: 50%

1.2 Course Objectives

This online course will focus on three modules:

  • Describing structure of medical terms
  • Identifying accepted abbreviations of medical terms
  • Exploring body positions and planes

2.0 Resource Materials

Chabner, D. (2015). Medical terminology: A short course (7th ed.). St. Louis, MO: W. B. Saunders.

3.0 Special Needs

It is the responsibility of students who may have a disability, injury or illness and feel they require academic accommodation to contact course facilitators following contact and assessment with Saskatchewan Polytechnic Learning Services at (306) 775- 7436

3.1 Attendance and Punctuality

This 8 week asynchronous online course allows the learner the flexibility and freedom to self schedule their learning. Although learners can migrate through the course content at their own pace, we have included a weekly schedule to demonstrate the time most students require to complete each module successfully.

4.0 Assignments

Assignment #1-Module 1.5 (30%)- Multiple Choice Evaluative Quiz

Assignment #2-Module 2.5 (30%)- Multiple Choice Evaluative Quiz

Assignment #3-Module 3.5 (35%)- Describe and document the wound or identified area of images.

Assignment #4- Participation (5%)- Discussion participation

5.0 Saskatchewan Polytechnic Policies

Policies and procedures have been developed to fulfil the vision, values and mandate of the organization and include the following series, academic, advancement and alumni, facilities, finance, general administration, health and safety, human resources, information management, international, materials management, research and scholarly activity, and student services.

An annual policy notification process is in place to meet the organisation’s obligations to ensure employee and students are aware of their individual rights and responsibilities related to Saskatchewan Polytechnic Policies. This notification appears annually at the start of each school year. When you log into your Saskatchewan Polytechnic user account, an online annual policy notification screen will appear and you will be required to electronically acknowledge receipt of the notification.

Please read and refer to Saskatchewan Polytechnic policies to help guide your experiences while you are a student in the Pre-Nursing Medical Terminology course.

For more information and a complete list of Saskatchewan Polytechnic policies and procedures, please visit the schedule and Saskatchewan Polytechnic website (Links to an external site.)at and look for “Policies and Procedures” under the section titled “About–> About us–> Policies”

6.0 Weekly Schedule

Week Content Assignments and Readings
Week 1 Introduction
  • Complete your Canvas profile
  • Complete Discussion Post #1
  • Readings for Module One
Week 2 Module One
  • Compete instruction online video provided
  • Complete learning activity
Week 3
  • Submit Module One evaluative tool
  • Complete Discussion Post #2
  • Readings for Module number two
Week 4 Module Two
  • Complete instruction online video provided
  • Complete learning activity
Week 5
  • Submit Module Two evaluative tool
  • Readings for Module number three
Week 6 Module Three
  • Complete instruction online video provided
  • Complete learning activity
Week 7
  • Submit Module Three evaluative tool
  • Complete Discussion Post #3
Week 8
  • Submit final project
  • Complete online course evaluation

7.0 Online success strategies

Top 5 strategies for success in online learning:

  1. Devote consistent blocks of time to the class
  2. Communicate regularly with the professor
  3. Engage with your classmates
  4. Begin your work early
  5. Remember that online classes vary greatly

If you would like to access our course in full detail, here are the directions to do so.
Click here
User name/log in:
eci834student@gmail.com
Password:
student123

Although we can not respond to all the feedback from all reviews, we have read and considered it all in detail. Unfortunately it was challenging to recognize all feedback when Image result for grow and learnsome of the feedback was evaluative and judgemental in nature. We are grateful to the peers that looked at this exercise as an opportunity to assist colleagues to grow and learn from each other. To those peers that felt this was an opportunity to be overly critical and analyze every small detail our course prototype we choose to respectfully decline your feedback and not respond in detail at this time.

Picture Source

Once again, we want to thank everyone for the honest and constructive feedback. If we Image result for constructive feedbackwere to go live with our prototype we feel all of the feedback provided would prove to be very useful and ultimately facilitate the student and their success.

 

Picture Source

 

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

EC&I 834 Learning Summary….

Taking a tech class was something I have always wanted to do. That being said, wanting to do something and believing you can doing something are two completely different entities.

Source

 I think getting through the first class was the hardest. Once I figured out what Zoom Us was, how to set up a blog and what the heck Google Plus was I was flying. The support and assistance provided from  the EC&i834 community was amazing; thank you!

Source

Malinda, Stephanie and I worked on our EC&1 834 Summary of Learning together as a team. We have all fallen in love with Adobe Spark and have used that as our platform to present our learning. I hope you all enjoy our attempt to demonstrate some of the knowledge we have gained over the last few months and our wacky sense of humor.

Game on!

EC&I 834 Jeopardy

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

From “Technotard” to “Techyish”

Over the course of the last few months, Melinda, Stephanie and I have been diligently working on our course prototype, Medical Terminology for the Pre- Nursing Student. As I posted in Melinda’s blog this week, I believe more was learnt  from what went wrong and was difficult to navigate in this course,then when things went well and came “easy” to us. After we agreed upon the content of our course we had a lot of discussion surrounding what type of Learning Management System (LMS) we would utilize to deliver our prototype. Initially we thought about utilizing Bright Space, formerly D2L, as I had utilized this LMS in the past. As an instructor I had  found Bright Space easy to navigate and edit. I had always received positive feedback from my students regarding the ability to navigate the course with ease and that it provided them with the tools to support their success.

After discovering that access to this LMS maybe be a little tricky, we decided to step away from Bright Space.   It was at this time  Melinda and Stephanie  suggested moving towards Moodle. Both ladies utilize Moodle with their jobs and felt it would be beneficial to  dive into the intricacies of the platform.

This is where the story gets a little fuzzy as my body tends to try and protect me and erase certain experiences and memories from my mind. From what I can recall, Moodle was nothing more than a hassle. It was difficult to open, navigate and organize.  Now, I would be remiss if I  failed to mention the fact that I am in no way tech savvy. I can hold my own when it goes to navigating the web, sending emails, creeping on Facebook and Instagram and following my favorite Riders on Twitter, but in no way, am I tech savvy!  This being said, I have to say I found comfort in hearing from numerous #ECI834 peers that they too had difficulty with Moodle. Needles to say, our groups quickly aborted the idea of Moodle as our LMS.

Canvas is the LMS the our group finally settled on. Although we did have difficulties here and there, we found the platform easy to use and navigate for the most part. We enlisted in the help of Canvas’ online and support persons numerous times. “Mary” from Canvas was always willing to answer any of our questions and guide us through any difficulties we had. The friendly support from the staff of Canvas and the overall layout and easy of the platform,are the two reasons why I would recommend Canvas to anyone or use  it again.

Our course has been close to completion for a few weeks now. Our group plans on meeting this weekend to go over everything one last time with a fine toothed comb. I’m looking forward to the feedback we receive from  our peers and applying that feedback to our course prototype. That being said,  I am excited to have a look into what everyone else has been up to and learn from the tools and applications you have all included in your courses. Learning from each of my peers throughout this course is something that has occurred since day one of the class when Ashley, Nancy, and Kristen helped us ‘rookie nurse technotards’ out so much!

Although I was initially intimidated with the prototype assignment (and this class) I have to say that once we dove into the actual content  of our course, I truly enjoyed the assignment. I think everyone in our group would say they learnt a lot and had fun with the numerous tools we utilized within the prototype. Furthermore, I have become an  avid fan of Adobe Spark, Flip Grid and Mentimeter . Sadly, I will confess that in other Grad classes I haven’t found course content that applies to my everyday. The tools that we have discussed and have been introduced to in this course are things that I have incorporated into my classroom on numerous occasions already!! I don’t know about other Grad students, but this is something that excites me, my students and my co-workers!!! I have a long way to go in regards to learning and technology but I am so grateful for how far I have come and the knowledge I have gained!

Posted in eci834 | 4 Comments

A Slippery Slope

Facilitating nursing education poses both similar challenges as well as obvious differences to those of you who educate in primary, middle and high school.  Besides the understandable differences such as  maturity level, age, curriculum, and legislation, there are more serious and consequential elements that must be considered. The content which often considers health teaching and concerns, frequently revolves around personal and confidential data, as well as praxis which incorporate best- practice and an ever changing  and evolving skill and knowledge base.

Being mindful of the above mentioned points, I believe opening  nursing and health related online course spaces to the world pose both benefits and risks/drawbacks.

Nursing students exposed to open course forums could benefit from the exposure and access to expert, diverse and advancing health knowledge, treatments and research. The polarizing discussions formulated in open forums could easily be facilitated through the exposure to  varied and diverse perceptions, experiences and the sharing of unique knowledge. Furthermore and just as importantly, this sharing could potentially have significant effects  not only on nursing knowledge, but ultimately positive patient outcomes.  Open forums in health education could also result in unforeseen and unique teachable moments that may not occur in typical closed discussion rooms. The experiences shared from various diverse populations and demographics can only enhance and widen the lens in which healthcare workers assess, diagnose and treat medical conditions and illnesses.

Professionalism and its associated behaviors, content that is discussed at length within nursing education programs, could also be incorporated within open online forum discussions and assist students in communicating in professional and competent manners. Often in closed forums, where students often become comfortable with their peers, professional language, effective conflict resolution and medical information and jargon is often communicated at a level that is consistent with the cohort of students. Engaging in an open forum would encourage nursing students to post and respond to comments in respectful, professional and at a level appropriate to those they are conversing, be it a layperson or expert.

Drawbacks to open online forums in relation to nursing education also exist. Consciously or not, students may inadvertently discuss private and confidential patient information. Not only would this pose issues with their educational institution but with their future regulatory body.  Educational institutions, such as the Saskatchewan Polytechnic, and Regulatory bodies, such as the Saskatchewan Association of Licensed Practical Nurses(SALPN) and the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses Association (SRNA), have strict standards and guidelines when it comes to patient confidentiality and professional boundaries in the use and sharing via electronic and social media. Discipline investigations and processes would incur if confidentiality standards and guidelines were breached.

The rules and regulations regarding open sources and media are strictly monitored and enforced by healthcare institutions and regulatory bodies. A recent incident regarding a Prince Albert nurse who posted about her grandfather’s health care experience on Facebook was found guilty of professional misconduct. Regardless of the fact that the accused nurse argued that her post was made on a her personal Facebook page and was made from the perspective of a family member, not a nurse, the SRNA felt that as a nurse, professional behaviors must be maintained both at work and in the private lives of nurses.

Another drawback to nursing students participating in open online forums would be to the potential exposure to information and knowledge that does not meet or exercise best practice standards and knowledge. Students could potentially be exposed to practitioners who don’t practice to best- practice standards,unregistered healthcare workers, laypeople or those who misrepresent themselves. The potential for  misrepresentation, false or inaccurate  knowledge and anonymity pose risks in relation to nursing student knowledge and raise issues regarding patient safety and care.

If open online forums were an option for nursing students, I believe that safeguards would have to be in place. Moderators would have to be secured to ensure content was vetted for accuracy and patient confidentially was maintained. Although these securities would pose enormous consumption of time and exhausting responsibility and obligation, the benefits in relation to student learning and exposure to vast amounts of knowledge and research would be tremendous.

Posted in eci834 | 8 Comments

Can I Quote You on That?

 

” Are you designing the type of class you would  enjoy and want to take?” Alec Couros

As I shared on the chat feed during last weeks class, I completed a post-diploma degree from Athabasca University,Canada’s Open University  . Each of my ten classes through Athabasca were delivered in an asynchronous online method. If I was asked to reflect and think about the knowledge that I gained  and how much I enjoyed those ten classes, I unfortunately wouldn’t have a lot of positive things to share with you all.

The online classes that I took from Athabasca University, served their purpose but were merely a means to an end for me. Each and every class consisted of reading chapters upon chapters of textbook and then writing paper after paper. Course content was basically regurgitated  in the form of submitted papers via email, which were then graded by an instructor who I never had any contact or relationship with. Over the course of the four years that it took me to complete the program, I spoke with an instructor once after I painfully arranged a time to call her long distance and seek out clarification on an assignment. Most course facilitators would state they were available on a certain day of the week within a two hour window. In order to contact them during this time, you had to email in advance and set up an appointment. If a fellow student had already emailed and booked a phone conference in the time available, you were out of luck. Furthermore, I never communicated or corresponded with another student throughout my entire four years. I honestly believe I  had no support, no one to bounce ideas off of, and no one to offer timely clarification; I had no community. This being said, the one thing I did have, was the opportunity to learn how to write a sound and technically correct APA paper……and we all know how important that is for a nurse! UGH!

Image result for writing papers in college

Source

The assigned readings this week discuss the importance of various components of successful online courses. Specifically, the creation of a virtual community is considered an important aspect of creating engaging, motivating and interesting classes. The articles this week discuss the fact that online course communities will emerge and foster effective learning “if learners are engaged with each other intentionally and collectively in the transaction or transformation of knowledge”. Furthermore, this weeks articles go on to explain that “an important over-arching principle to building a virtual learning community is to be deliberate, to think about and do things purposefully to foster community growth”. I now understand the feelings I have towards my past experiences with online learning as well as the importance of creating and fostering student community and collegiality.  Athabasca claims it is a leader in distant and online learning. If this were true, I firmly believe after reflecting upon my own personal experiences as a Athabasca alumni and reading a few short articles about successful and essential components of online courses, that Athabasca should revisit and re-evaluate what it as an organization feels a leader in online education truly encompasses.

Image result for reevaluate quotes

Source

To foster a virtual community within our course prototype, Stephanie, Melinda and I  have integrated interactive and engaging activities. We have included an icebreaker activity where students have to briefly introduce themselves via flip grid, animations, video’s, matching and true and false activities, and discussion posts. Furthermore, we have provided instructor access for assistance via Zoom US to allow for timely and personal support and guidance.

Image result for online community

Source

I believe the interactions we have chose to adopt in our course prototype will not only engage the learner but provide an opportunity for critical thought and demonstrate true understanding of course content versus regurgitation of course content via such assessment activities as APA paper submissions. It is our groups hope that the learning that would potentially take place by completing our pre- nursing course, Medical Terminology, would be meaningful through the delivery of engaging activities and a supportive community including that of the facilitator and fellow students.

 

Posted in eci834 | 2 Comments

Alec and Katia’s Method to Madness?

In class last week we discussed the fact that numerous research studies, and the Bates text itself, identify that there is no difference in student success when face to face instruction is compared to that of an online approach.  This being said, most of us enrolled in ECI834 deliver our daily lessons in a face to face manner. One can assume that each of us facilitates success strategies in our classrooms to assist learners to learn in unique and meaningful ways. Throughout our education we have honed our skills in assessment of student needs and understand that individuals learn differently. As a result of our experiences and formal education, each of us is armed with numerous strategies to assist learners be successful in the classroom.

Our final assignment of this class is to develop either and online or blended course. Over the course of the last few weeks we have discussed learning management systems and numerous programs and applications that aim to assist in the delivery of information and the transfer and facilitation of knowledge. But as teachers do we understand strategies that can assist online learns to be successful? This week I read a short article that examined strategies that facilitators of online courses can utilize to assist learners achieve success in online courses.

An article published by John Hopkins University explains that there are numerous strategies that can be promoted by teachers and utilized by learners to aid in the success of online classes. In fact, Dr. Jennifer Bachner, has narrowed the numerous strategies into a top five.

Bachner recommends online students devote consistent blocs of time to their course. Although online classes offer students flexibility, student success is evident when consistent blocks of time during the week are devoted to their online course work. Success is most evident when online students set aside consistent time periods that allocated specifically to “school work”.

homework-at-home

“Homework Time”

The second success strategy that online instructors can encourage their students to partake in, is regular communication with their instructor. Students should be encouraged to ask questions when course content is unclear or expectations regarding assignments are vague. Instructors and students should be open to establishing relationships despite the fact that face to face instruction does not occur.

Communication

Communication

Like Alec and Katia promote, Bachner goes on to state that online courses should encourage classmates to interact with each other outside of the mandatory discussion postings. Students should be encouraged to share their knowledge, insights and experiences through such means as relevant news stories or publications that relate to course content. I feel we in ECI834 do this through our #ECI834 hashtag, our individual comments to our peer’s blog posts and through the google plus page. This sharing promotes a feeling of collaboration and collegiality, things that often happen in successful face to face courses.

The fourth strategy discussed in the article encourages online students to understand and work within the confines of the online world. Working with new software and programs often takes time to learn to navigate and understand. I know last semester when I signed up for ECI833, it was the technology of the class itself that scared me away. I could not imagine myself creating a blog, signing up and managing Zoom US and tweeting every week. The content of the actual course didn’t scare me, it was connecting and interacting online. Bachner feels it’s important for students to understand that they will encounter certain hurdles and unfamiliar approaches to learning but those who reach out, ask for assistance and give themselves time to adjust, are often successful.

The fifth and final strategy that can promote the success of online students is to understand that not all online classes are the same. Understanding the instructor’s expectations and how the facilitator structures their class is important. Some online classes are heavily weighted on online discussion posts while others utilize group projects or papers. Student success increases when students ensure the expectations of the class align with their learning style and needs.

After reading Bachners article I have to say that I am hopeful that I may make it successfully through #ECI834. Not only due to my hard work and determination, but due to the strategies, expectations, and requirements that Alec and Katia have incorporated into this class. So thanks guys! It’s nice to know there is a “method to your madness” and you have done everything you can to promote success within all of us within #ECI834!!!!

Posted in eci834 | 7 Comments

Thank you Mrs. Henryk

Posted in eci834 | 4 Comments

And…. The Myth Has Been CONFIRMED

Remember last week when I talked about how I always had to be “that kid”. The kid who has to prove things to themselves in order to be convinced of things …. WHY! Why must I be that person!!  Why don’t I learn from my mistakes!!!  As you know, my group and I were convinced that we were going to be able to successfully take on and use Moodle. Well, we took it on but weren’t successful. We had our butts handed to us on a plate by King Moodle. We failed – miserably. So I’ve admitted it and I’ve moved on, hopefully, to a better place.

mistakes

Anywhooooo…. moving onto today’s topic!

This week I looked at a few of the content creation tools listed in the course outline from our January 31st class. I took an interest in two specific tools in particular, Powtoon and Adobe Spark. I looked at these two tools for a specific reason- I was told they were good! See, I’m staring to learn and I’m trying not to be “that kid” anymore.

First I looked at Powtoon. Students of mine have used it in the past and it has  always impressed me- if my students can use it, I should be able to use it as well, right?? Powtoon is a free animation video presentation builder. Pre-built storyboard templates are provided  that you can use or you can start from scratch. I used one of the pre-built templates and easily edited the content to match the content I was presenting to my class. The tool allows you to choose the specific look you are looking for, build your story and then finish up by editing your content. I did find  building my story to be somewhat frustrating as the options of characters, for example, was limited. Furthermore, the editing was somewhat cumbersome at times but that might of just been due to my lack of “techieness”. Overall the tool is straightforward and easy to use and I will use it again. Most importantly, my students loved it and it increased engagement and excitement in the classroom.

I also looked at Adobe Spark this past week.  Last week when we were in our breakout rooms one of our classmates( I’m sorry, but I forget who this was) spoke passionately about Adobe Spark. Furthermore, Stephanie, who Melinda and I are working with for our course prototype, developed a short video for our course. She did such a great job and talked about how easy and straight forward the tool was.

Adobe Spark allows you to create animated videos. You can embed photos, videos and audio record your story. You simply import your photo or video and record a description of the content you want to convey. Each slide or photo is allotted a 10 second audio recording. Although this was ample time for my slides, this may be problematic for others with more detailed content to cover. The user picks a background theme and music that best  suits their presentation. Text and icons can also be added to presentations. The original presentation that is presented to the user includes 10 slides. It was easy to add additional slides and I could move things around by simply dragging and dropping individual slides to where I wanted them. Another nice feature of Adobe Spark is that it automatically saves your project. I was grateful for this feature as for some reason as I got close to finishing my video, my screen went blank (4 times!!!) and a warning came up stating that something had gone wrong and I had to reload the page. I have to admit, that initially I panicked as I thought I had lost my entire presentation. Luckily, like I said, there is a built in “save” feature built in and all my hard work had been saved. I will defiantly  add Adobe Spark onto my  list of  teaching tools and use it in the classroom. I wont say I’m a pro in using it as of yet but it is definitely fun, user friendly and  i believe it will increase student engagement in the classroom. If you feel like it, check out my first attempt with Adobe Spark!

 

 

 

 

Posted in eci834 | 11 Comments

Myth Busters!!!

Have  you ever been told you shouldn’t or can’t do something? Have you ever had doubt cast upon you only to have  been motivated that much more by the lack of trust or hesitation of others? Call it my desire to always fight for the underdog, a motivation to find out things for myself, or plain stupidity, but this is what I do. I was the kid that had to stick my tongue to the metal play-structure in the playground to see if it would really stick. The kid that had to touch the stove to see if it really was hot, the kid that had to really see if the ice was to thin to skate on… yes, the person who was told moodle was a terrible, horrible and despicable LMS , but had to find out for herself.

http-%2f%2fmashable-com%2fwp-content%2fgallery%2fholiday-movie-trivia%2fchristmasstory1Call me a fool, as not only did Alec state numerous times in our last class that he didn’t care for the LMS Moodle,  our reading this week by Audrey Watters, goes on to reiterate his thoughts and the use of LMSs in general. Yes, I am that fool that disregards the warnings of the educated and  those who will be assigning a grade to my assignment, and takes on Moodle. Call me a crusader, or a super-hero for the overlooked and under-rated LMSs of the world, but I hope by the  end of my assignment, I know one-way or another if I can defend Moodle, or like the masses, dislike and disregard it as an option in the future.

Ok, if I am really going to be honest, there are a few other reasons  other than for the reason I discussed above that my group, which includes Melinda and Stephanie, have decided to use Moodle as our LMS for our Medical Terminology course. The nursing degree program , the program Melinda and Stephanie work for at Saskatchewan Polytechnic, works in collaboration with the University of Regina  and thus, is aligned with the LMS Moodle. I  myself, work in the practical nursing program, which is strictly a Sask Poly associated program and therefore I follow Sask Polys LMS of Brightspace. I am relatively  comfortable with Brightspace, and like Malinda and Stephanie mention in their blogs, are unfamiliar and poorly versed and practiced in Moodle, thus this assignment is a great opportunity for us all to become more familiar and comfortable with moodle.

Since our last class I have done some research and looked a little closer at Moodle leading me to discover a few interesting advantages to using Moodle as a LMS. Moodle is the LMS most often used around the world and because of this, students are often familiar and comfortable with this system. Furthermore, it is an open source and free to download and use- bonus! Lastly, Moodle is known to encompass up- to-date content, multimedia interactivity, collaborative learning tools, gamification, integrated badges, video conferencing, love or recorded webinars and face- to-face activities, all of which sound as though they would lend to a personal learning experience.

 

I am interested to hear from those of you who have used Moodle. Would  you use it again? What did you like about it? What did you not like about it?

 

Posted in eci834 | 6 Comments

Medical What!!!

Well, I made it through my second class of #ECI834!! I’m excited to say that   I am one step further than I was at this time last semester. Unfortunately, last semester  I only made it through one class of ECI833- yes, I too was a parking lot dropout.

 This week I want to introduce you to the course Stephanie, Malinda and I have decided to tackle.  As nursing instructors we’ve all witnessed the difficulty students have with medical terminology.  Medical terminology itself, is introduced and discussed marginally as specific course content and is allotted minimal course time. As a rule, students are expected to learn much of this new and difficult language on their own. Students often comment that they wish there was a course they could undertake outside of the nursing program that not only introduced them to medical terminology but discussed and examined more of the intricacies of this language.

Because we are only just beginning to uncover the benefits and drawbacks of blended and online courses, I find it difficult  to clearly and definitively state what mode of delivery I would choose  for our proposed course at this time. This being said, I have  taught a blended (hybrid)course in the past and did enjoy numerous components including the personal relationships that were fostered during f2f sessions, the ability to clarify questions for students who had difficulty in communicating their misunderstandings and questions in the written word,  and the ability to pickup on student understanding and comprehension  through non-verbal cues that I may not have pickup on in a remote/online application.  Sometimes it is the non-verbals that one receives as an educator that provides more insight and feedback on a students understanding than by only viewing submitted and edited assignments. This all being said, my rudimentary thinking is, if our class is based around knowledge  and is an elective for students to complete if they so choose to assist them once they are in a formalized nursing class, our class would be based on an online model.

I want to thank everyone for all of their support and guidance thus far in the course! I enjoyed the atmosphere of the class this past week and everyone and their knowledge and humour. Last week Stephanie included a link about Vlog’ing in her post. I’m not sure if I am up for that challenge as of yet but I did put together a little video to demonstrate nursing students and their difficulty with medical terminology. This required my to set up a You-tube channel and figure out how to upload it to this weeks blog…. I hope you all enjoy it!

comments.

 

Video | Posted on by | 11 Comments