Meaningful E-Learning (MEL): An International, Collaborative, Multi-Institution Research Project

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Penelope A. Barrett, RN, RM, PhD, MEd, (IT, Ed/Train), BEd, (Nurs)
Warners Bay Private Hospital, Lakeside Clinic, Warners Bay NSW, Australia
Sue S. Myers, M, V/T, ED, BSW, RPN, ad, dip, psych, nursing
Psychiatric Nursing Program, Nursing Division, SIAST, Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology, Regina, SK, Canada
Lorraine Carter, PhD, MA, BEd (Hons), BA
Centre for Flexible Teaching and Learning, Nipissing University, North Bay, ON, Canada
Vincent Salyers, EdD, MSN, BA, RN
Faculty of Health & Community Studies, Mount Royal University, Calgary, AB, Canada

Learning Objective 1: identify key components of this action research project, in particular those pertaining to collaboration and global partnerships

Learning Objective 2: critically evaluate the potential impact of the research project on contemporary nursing education


The purpose of this research is to help students and faculty identify their e-learning needs and implement e-learning strategies into their learning and teaching activities in effective, meaningful and sustainable ways. This poster will outline the development of a collaborative research project that has been implemented between four post-secondary/tertiary institutions in Australia and Canada following a call for collaboration, triangulation, and scholarship development in 2010.


This action research project uses a mixed-methods approach to collect and analyze data to answer the research questions. There are three project phases: collection of data through an online survey completed by faculty and an online survey completed by students; collection of data through focus groups with faculty and focus groups with students, and; validation of all data sets through triangulation techniques. The project will be conducted over three years to allow time to sufficiently analyze and triangulate all data sets from the international sample.

The project will explore the following variables: a) perceptions of quality e-learning courses; b) challenges of e-learning courses; c) prerequisite knowledge and e-learning skills; d) learning styles and e-learning, and; e) characteristics of quality e-learning courses.   


Data collection begins in January 2012.  Preliminary data from online surveys may be available for dissemination at the conference.


Due to the increasing use of e-learning strategies across the globe, the significance of the MEL Project is extensive. Recommendations that emerge from the study have the potential to influence e-learning best practices in nursing education, the social sciences, the arts and humanities, and beyond.