Teaching with Technology: Using a Wiki in an Undergraduate Nursing Course

Thursday, 25 July 2013: 3:35 PM

Indra Hershorin, PhD, RN
Division of Nursing, Barry University, Miami Shores Miami Shores, FL

Learning Objective 1: The learner will discuss how digital technologies are impacting students learning.

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to develop a wiki for an undergraduate nursing course.

Prensky (2001) proposed that students’ today are “native speakers” of the digital language. They interact frequently with technologies - computers, video games, and the Internet. Nurse educators already challenged with the task of covering increased amounts of content in nursing curricula are given the additional challenge of using instructional strategies that are interactive and cooperative. The wiki tool on the Blackboard course management system can be a useful means for covering content, communicating with students, and facilitating effective collaboration.

From an instructional technology perspective wikis allow faculty to engage in collaborative activities that might not be possible in the classroom. The Blackboard course management system wiki can be used for group projects, collaborative writing, and creating shared course resources. Wikis consist of “pages” that can incorporate text, sounds, videos, mashups, images, attached files and links to others websites.

A wiki group assignment was created for students in a pediatric course to cover the content area injury prevention in children. The 22 students enrolled in the course were assigned to one of five groups. Each group was assigned with the task of researching and posting content for a specific pediatric age group. Pages were created for the students in advance and organized in the Blackboard content area. Guidelines and grading rubric describing the expected content were given to students. The wikis developed were creative and comprehensive. In an informal evaluation using open-ended questions in the class, students responses to the wiki technology for group work was very positive.

Using digital technologies such as wikis in the classroom will not only help nurse educators in meeting the learning needs of todays digital learners but covering much needed content. The use of the wiki tecnnology as a teaching strategy meets the pedagogical needs of the course for students involvement, teamwork, and collaboration.