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22st Annual OLC International Conference
November 16-18, 2016 | Orlando, Florida | Walt Disney World Swan/Dolphin Resort

OLC Innovate 2016 - Innovations in Blended and Online Learning
April 20-22, 2016 | New Orleans, LA | Sheraton New Orleans Hotel

Enacting the Digital Future of Health Science Education: Evaluating Blended Models At GWU

Paige McDonald (The George Washington University, USA)
Linda Cotton (George Washington University, USA)
Howard Straker (George Washington University, USA)
Additional Authors
Bryan Walker (The George Washington University, USA)
Elizabeth Ruckert (The George Washington University, USA)
Laurie Lyons (George Washington University, USA)
Session Information
July 7, 2015 - 3:30pm
Blended Models & Course Design
Areas of Special Interest: 
Innovative Blends
Major Emphasis of Presentation: 
Research and Evaluation
Institutional Level: 
Universities and Four Year Institutions
Audience Level: 
Session Type: 
Featured Session
Plaza Ballroom E
Session Duration: 
50 Minutes
Concurrent Session 2
Virtual Session

Discusses highlights from an article series in Online Learning evaluating health sciences education at GWU. Addresses insights gained, gaps identified, and plans for future implementation.

Extended Abstract

The November special issue of Online Learning focused on Blended Learning in Health Sciences, reporting on efforts by educators at George Washington University (GWU) to integrate technology into traditional programs to address the needs of future graduates. This session will involve a panel discussion among authors of the special issue and audience members regarding lessons learned from the article series.

Adoption of technology in traditional programs in higher education is necessitated by issues of cost and space, as well as by the need to prepare graduates to hit the ground running upon entering the workforce. These issues are particularly poignant in health related professions due to the need to educate an increasing number of healthcare professionals equipped to solve increasingly complex healthcare problems. Lessons learned from our experiences can transcend disciplinary boundaries to benefit all programs transitioning from traditional models of learning delivery to technology enhanced and blended models.

In this session, panelists will share ways in which technology has improved student learning and preparation to meet the requirements of their future professions at GWU. However, we will also discuss challenges we face in determining which technology best meets the educational needs of our students. We have also faced challenges in using technology to promote active learning among a student population accustomed to traditional lecture-based learning models.

While Health Sciences education is our particular context, we do not think that the challenges we have faced are unique to health related disciplines, so we would like to encourage an inter-disciplinary discussion during this session. Ideally, panelists and participants will exchange ideas on how to negotiate these challenges to promote active learning through technological integration as the norm, rather than the exception, across higher education programs.

Lead Presenter

Paige McDonald is the Director of Health Sciences Core Curriculum and Visiting Assistant Professor of Clinical Research and Learning at The George Washington University. She is currently working to promote blended learning and develop blended courses in Health Science disciplines. Paige's research interests include blended learning, adult learning, reflective practice, and course design for higher levels of learning.