A couple of weeks ago Kate Kersey and I attended our first CAPHIA (Council of Academic Public Health Institutions Australia) Teaching & Learning Forum in Sydney, Australia: http://caphia.com.au/events/
This was an inspiring event. The presenters had engaging content but more than that, the forum effectively created a sense of community; an open and warm collegial spirit. The sessions were all held in the one room and so everyone had the opportunity to listen to all the scheduled speakers, unlike the bigger conferences where parallel sessions means you spend your time darting between session rooms, making difficult choices, or opting out and choosing the city sights instead. This forum was different.
One of the highlights (and there were many) was a lunchtime seminar from Associate Professor Joe Negin, Head of School, Associate Professor of International Public Health, School of Public Health at the University of Sydney.
Joel shared with us his top tips for early/mid career academics, woven through his story-telling of his circuitous path to academia.
This is my recollection of his top tips:
- Be present – turn up, attend meetings, be seen around the place.
- Be the person to make the first draft – although daunting offer to start the first draft. That way you’ll make your mark on the project/document etc
- Be opportunistic.
- Be bold.
- Be global.
- Suck up to people we admire, such as authors – read a great article? email the author. Tell them what you think. May lead to new and important connections.
- Gain methodological expertise – a transferable area of expertise
- Think multisectorally – life doesn’t exist in silos, get out there and mix/mingle across sectors/faculties
- Work with people you like rather than people with shared areas of interest or expertise – working with people you like means you’ll enjoy work more, plus will lead to more creativity and more cross-discipline research, greater likelihood for innovative collaborations.
- Be organised – just helps a lot!
For me the key tip was choosing to work with people I like – more fun, more productive, more interesting outcomes. I look forward to doing more of this!
What’s your favourite tip…or do you have others?
Ok, so I’ve captured a snap of an environment with a 360 camera… …now what?
This was the leading question as I tried to see how I could use a captured environment of a hockey turf for teaching. This was aimed to develop understanding of complexity of concussion to a group of third year physiotherapy students. The capture itself required some consideration to start with- permission from the grounds “owners”; time of day for adequate light; and capture with “clean” environment- players not facing camera/ too far away to identify.
I was able to use Adobe PhotoShop to add in some elements after. While this would have been better to capture with the elements already in place at the time of the 360 snap- at this point I had not completed Storyboarding my scenario. Uploaded to Seekbeak, I was able to use then add in the appropriate Hotspots. The aim was to help students identify with environment of a concussion on a hockey turf. They needed to look around, and “seek” for the information that would be pertinent to their assessment and ongoing management. This included links to assessment forms; concussion card resources and information about the current status of the patient (http://tinyurl.com/MCCECase1). They needed to filter out information that was not required for that point in time; and priorities the information that was important to establish an adequate handover to a paramedic and/ or medical doctor.
As I had familiarised myself with the created environment as I had developed it, I needed to be mindful that this mode of delivery was still novel to the students. Some found it difficult to find the “invisible” hotspots; others seemed disjointed in how they approached the scenario. While took some time to steer on the right track again- I am not too concerned at this approach- isn’t that how it is in reality- information provided to you left, right and centre- requiring filtering and prioritising…?
I will change my tac next time. While will still use the environment, will give them a better outline of :
- What is in the snap,
- That is ok to “explore” as long as can reposition that information in a succinct, prioritised, and clinically reasoned manner,
- Remind them that this simulates reality- organising chaos to adapt the assessment and/ or treatment, and
- What are the overall expectations/ end outcome
…well, it was a start. As part of the Learning and Teaching Group for the School of Clinical Sciences (feel an acronym coming on there…) I was asked to present introduce the day and assist running a workshop.
The theme was around “Interprofessional Healthcare”. Fitting, considering the current project we are doing with Paramedicine and Nursing (Interprofessional Project #1). To gain an appreciation of how interprofessional the seven involved disciplines are required to be, I looked up the various registration competencies and/ or standards for each discipline- namely Midwifery, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Oral Health, Paramedicine, Physiotherapy and Podiatry. I did a quick and dirty search for words such as “interprofessional”, “team”, “other$”, “disciplin$” and was somewhat surprised with the results. I expected Nursing to come out on top for team relationships and connecting with social services. However, it was Physiotherapy that mentioned an interprofessional approach in 34% (38/113) of the enabling components for registration. This was more than double that for Midwifery and Occupational Therapy (15%), then Nursing (12%), Oral Health (9%) followed by Paramedicine and Podiatry (6%). While there was some disparity in where interprofessional practice was mentioned in the disciplines, there was consistency in the core values related to interprofessional practice:
- Appreciate and respect of roles, scope of practice and boundaries
- Share, consult and collaborate with one another for the benefit of the client and profession
- Support each profession in terms of knowledge and resources
- Education to promote health, profession and students
Registration competencies for three of the seven disciplines (Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy and Podiatry) has recently changed in 2015, whereby it is good timing to consider “out with the old- in with the new” in terms of thinking, teaching and learning together with an interprofessional approach. We already allude to this in our graduate profiles, learning outcomes, content and assessment- though opportunities need to be sought to develop this further- especially as our various health professions (and clients) demand it.
With a shared interest in applying virtual environments in healthcare education delivery, representatives from CfLAT, Paramedicine, Nursing and Physiotherapy have begun collaboration in developing an interprofessional scenario. The most obvious place where these professions inter-lap is during a handover.
The development of the scenario will (hopefully) serve multiple purposes:
- Get Together. While we talk (at length, some times) about developing interprofessional education, the practicality of progressing this can be met with some resistance. For some- it’s easier to do it alone to progress individual ideas by excluding consultation with others. Fortunately, this is not the case for the group of people above, who ultimately see the students and professions only benefit in us prioritising and ensuring the best result with the resources we have. It is not without other constraints, however- location (are spread across three campuses); timetable, student numbers, research pressures; annual leave…
- Conceptual to Curriculum Embedding. The vision here is that if- as lecturers and clinicians- we can demonstrate a conceptual scenario as to how interprofessionals work together, it would be seen as achievable by students. This would require a shift from a more didactic form of teaching to encourage discipline students informing each other through interaction with consideration of others roles and requirements in terms of required clinical information for decision making.
- Develop [confidence in] Digital Fluency. A recent announcement from Hon. Hekia Parata signalled that digital fluency will be a key focus for Ministry centrally-funded professional learning support (PLD Changes will lift student achievement, 23 Sept. 2015). Digital fluency includes the combination of digital or technical proficiency; digital literacy; and social competence. For example, students could be given a case scenario to develop using available resources (360 cameras, SeekBeak, WondaVR). Data could be shared amongst the groups using Google Drive(s), edited using freely available software (www.seekbeak.com or http://www.WondaVR.com) and then uploaded to YouTube (private link) for viewing and critique of peers then assessment. By encouraging students to develop their scenarios within a “virtual environment”, it builds their procedural fluency and wisdom in becoming a “digital citizen”. It enables them to not only select the right tools for the task and know what to do with them, but also explain why it works that way and how they might adapt if the context changed.
- Research Output. As a School, truely embedding interprofessional consideration in to curriculum is relatively new. This sets the scene for potential publication and presentations as we develop our thoughts and progress on this venture together. The use of digital technology in the delivery of healthcare education is relatively uncharted, therefore, we suggest, watch this space…