Dec 132013
 

With technology ever-changing, the College of Allied Health Sciences is leading the way for the University with new equipment in a Allied Health Sciences building classroom that will open up new possibilities for professors and students alike.

“Fall semester saw the introduction to a new room setup and during winter break more of our rooms will benefit from this same technology,” said Jean Merenda, educational technology specialist.

The new technology is controlled by a Crestron touch screen monitor that allows for full integration of Microsoft “Ink” tools. Through this tool, professors can use a stylus to take notes directly on the screen during a presentation, highlighting key points and adding thoughts that can be saved for viewing later on.

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With the easy-to-use software, switching between different sources such as laptops, iPads or USB drives will be much easier and fluid, cutting down the time devoted to setting up for a lecture or presentation. Now professors and students can switch between devices seamlessly with minimum interruption time.

Also featured in the new classroom design is a state-of-the-art document camera with a high resolution than the ones currently being used in classrooms, and also takes up less room on the podium.

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Faculty from Health Services & Information Management look on as Jean Merenda from the office of educational technology demonstrates how to use the new touch panel.

Classroom 1345 is also equipped with a “bridge” system which will enable instructors to use the in-room camera for Skype and WebConferencing sessions.  Through this technology, students can conference with other classes across the state, or enjoy a guest lecturers without travel expense.  This technology will soon be available for all classrooms that currently have in-room cameras.

Air Media software will be a standard in the classroom as well and will allow students to connect and project from their personal devices. Through this software, students can easily share without having to disconnect one laptop and plugging in another to project on the screen.

“One of the neatest additions is the Air Media software which will enable students to share their desktops without leaving their seat,” said Merenda.

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Jean Merenda shows faculty how to utilize the in-room camera for recording and Skype sessions.

The new software is a great addition to the College of Allied Health Sciences and will assist in making lectures more accessible and interactive. For more information about technology in the College of Allied Health Sciences, visit the “OET for CAHS” blog at http://blog.ecu.edu/sites/OET/.

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May 292012
 

These days, the buzz in nursing education is technology. USA Today  recently asked whether technology has changed the content in our nation’s nursing schools. The answer is two-fold: technology provides new opportunities for nursing students and technology creates additional questions that must be answered.

East Carolina University’s College of Nursing is located in a modern, tech savvy building that has eight clinical laboratories for student practice. Each lab contains life-like manikins that can be programmed to replicate just about any condition from childbirth to heart attack. Students have the opportunity to practice new skills in a controlled, safe environment.

Today, most nursing students do not remember a time when computers were not part of their lives. The equipment in these labs mirrors the equipment in hospitals where new graduates will work. Even the software in the bedside computers is similar to the charting software in hospitals and medical offices around the country. Learning on the real thing gives today’s nursing students a leg up when they enter the workforce. As expected, millennial students excel using advanced technology, but does this make them better nurses?

Dr. Frances Eason, a longtime ECU Nursing professor, keeps her students grounded by teaching them how to care for their patients without depending on technology. Calculators are not allowed in her tests—she reasons that a patient can die in the amount of time it takes a nurse to find a calculator to figure a drug calculation or IV dosage. But, what about accuracy? She believes technology should be used only after students learn how to solve problems by clinical reasoning. Often, we rely on calculators but really do not know how to set up the calculations in the first place!

Many providers now use handheld computers to input patient data and to research diagnoses and medication. While students learn how to use these devices, we stress the importance of the credibility of the information they can access. Handhelds provide instant access to information, but students must learn how to distinguish between good and bad information.

Technology is certainly exciting and a huge asset in nursing education, but this advantage comes with strings. Students must be taught traditional nursing skills to be able to interpret and use the technology. And, they must learn to question the credibility and validity of the technology. For this, students will continue rely on a blend of critical thinking and technology.

–Dr. Sylvia T. Brown, Dean
College of Nursing