Thursday, September 14, 2006

Feasibility of combining e-health for patients with e-learning for students using synchron

Blackwell Synergy: J Adv Nurs, Vol 56, Issue 1, pp. 99-109: Feasibility of combining e-health for patients with e-learning for students using synchronous technologies (Abstract)

The latest edition of the Journal of Advanced Nursing contains an interesting paper by Ray Jones, Heather Skirton and Miriam McMullan from the School of Nursing and Community Studies, Faculty of Health and Social Work, University of Plymouth.

The study aimed to to introduce and evaluate methods for using information and communication technologies to involve academic staff, students, and patients in a common synchronous e-learning environment, by evaluating three synchronous technologies: (1) non-commercial satellite interactive television (TV); (2) Internet videoconferencing; and (3) webcasting, through feasibility studies of 'TV-style' panel discussions on health topics and seminars with interaction with viewers by e-mail, inter-site research meetings with face-to-face interaction, user surveys and literature reviews.

They found that Interactive satellite TV required the booking of rooms with specialized receiving equipment. This limited accessibility contributed to the high cost per participant. Videoconferencing proved acceptable for cross-site research meetings and is proposed for joint meetings for doctoral students with overseas centres but has the same access issues as interactive satellite TV. Webcasting is accessible to most users with Internet access and provides a feasible means of delivery of synchronous interactive material, concluding that; Webcasting proved the most acceptable way of supporting a common synchronous environment.

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