The Impact of Technology-Enhanced Learning Activities on Nursing Student Engagement in the Classroom
Stone, Alicia A.
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Session presented on Saturday, April 9, 2016: Educating student nurses in the present environment requires professors to stay current with new methodologies as well as innovations in technology. The question is how to address both the impact of technology and the skills of clinical reasoning, and keep the students involved in the material. If there can be integration of each aspect through the use of technology-enhanced learning activities on the internet and preparation to approach the issue, then perhaps success can be achieved. This is a quasi-experimental intervention study that explored the impact of a case study blogging assignment on the engagement of students enrolled in a fundamental nursing course. A pretest/posttest design, using the Adapted Engaged Learning Index as the instrument, was conducted over an eight week period. A total of 153 students received a pretest to measure engagement. The students were then divided into control and intervention classes. A posttest was administered after 5 pre-class blogging assignments had been completed. The results indicated a p-value of .110 in the control group and .118 in the intervention group. No statistically significant findings were obtained although the faculty identified an increased ability to participate in class and clinically reason. The study introduced the use of technology to encourage student preparation prior to class which may lead to increased participation and knowledge integration. The findings led to the recommendation that further studies should be done to identify technology-enhanced educational interventions that increase student engagement. These would include using the full semester in a course that only has one component, increasing orientation of the students to blogging in the learning management system, and expanding to multiple collegiate sites to increase generalizability. It is imperative that educators engage student nurses in learning and facilitate their mastering of clinical reasoning skills. Nurses need to be proficient at clinical reasoning as their professions calls for the ability to make timely and effective decisions. Through creative and innovative educational strategies, students will start to make the connections necessary to develop this mindset. This research explored the importance using technology enhanced educational adjuncts to assist in the transformation of nursing education and hence, future professionals.