February 29, 2012

Emerging Media Digital Feed: How Simulation Improves Nursing and Adult Learning

The Emerging Media Digital Feed is a monthly event organized by the center for Emerging Media Initiative (EMI) at Ball State University. The initiative was started for the purpose of advancing Indiana's economy through media-savvy human capital. Each month, EMI organizes an event that features a series of presentations on emerging media topics, their potential, as well as case studies and actual success stories of faculty members or researchers who have integrated those emerging topics into their practice.

This month's event, held on Friday, February 24, 2012 at the Schwartz Complex in Bracken Library, focused on the latest advancements and uses of simulation in nursing and adult education. The event featured two presentations, the first by Dr. Kay Hodson-Carlton, Simulation and Information Technology Center Director, and the second by Dr. Bo Chang, an Emerging Media Faculty Fellow.

Dr. Hodson-Carlton's presentation, titled "Simulation and Information Technology Center: Emerging Technologies for Nursing Education and Practice," focused on the latest developments in simulation in the field of nursing. Most interesting of those developments is the introduction of High Fidelity Simulators for students of nursing. Those accurate simulators, like the Human Patient Simulators for example, offer students the opportunity to experience various life-like situations related to patients and the practice of healthcare. Those patient simulators are programmable and can simulate virtually any scenario that involves nurse-patient interaction. Some of the benefits of the High Fidelity Simulators include higher student satisfaction and confidence, better judgments, and increased quality of health services.

The second presentation, "Integrating the Tool of Simulation into the Teaching of Adult Education," conducted by Dr. Bo Chang, Assistant Professor of Adult and Community Education, focused on her experience in utilizing simulation to improve adult learning. Defining simulation as "imitation of nature," Chang explained how she asked her students to conceptually divide the imitated object (which could be anything, like a plane, a department at a company, a website, or a service) into small parts in order to make it easier to analyze how it functions. Although at first unable to see the actual benefits of simulation, Chang contended, students were at last capable of overcoming their resistance to the new concept and started appreciating learning through simulation over time, especially after they were successful at imitating the objects they studied and saw the actual results for themselves. One group of students, for example, was able to simulate the hiring process of an HR department at a corporation. They first collected data about the recruitment process implemented by a few companies, analyzed the collected data, came up with a model, and then added their own ideas. Chang outlined some of the benefits of simulation for adult learning, which include bridging the gap between theory and practice, time-efficiency, and peer learning.

The next Emerging Media Digital Feed event will be held on Friday, March 30, 2012, at 12:15 PM, and will take place at the Schwartz Complex in Bracken Library. The event will highlight the Center for Media Design’s Insight and Research Unit, in particular the Usability Testing Lab and how faculty can take advantage of related technologies.

More information on the Emerging Media Initiative can be found by clicking here.

-Blogger Abdullah Al-Sheikh Hasan, SPO Graduate Assistant  

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