Event Title

Formative Research on an Instructional Design Theory for Virtual Patients in Clinical Education: An Electronic Fetal Monitoring Skills Development Case

Location

Marder

Format

Podium Presentation

Start Date

26-1-2013 2:10 PM

End Date

26-1-2013 2:40 PM

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Patient contact is the favored strategy for increasing diagnostic expertise. However, changes in clinical education, notably the 80-hour resident duty week, have narrowed trainees’ opportunities for case exposure. Online interactive cases, virtual patients (VPs), may help fill this gap. Design and development heuristics have been advanced, however there is no instructional design (ID) theory of VPs.

PURPOSE: Our aim is to develop an ID theory of VPs to enhance the development of diagnostic skills in medical trainees. Intrapartum EFM data interpretation serves as an initial instructional case for theory development.

METHODOLOGY: Formative research will be used to refine an existing ID theory, Goalbased Scenarios (GBS), to address the needs of EFM novice learners. Residents, midwivesin- training, and nurses will interact with an experimental EFM VP that exposes learners to both branching logic and game technology-based VP platforms. Both objective and perceptual data will be captured and analyzed.

RESULTS: Based on preliminary work, the potential of game technology to reduce the determinism inherent in branching logic VPs and provide more nuanced options for exploring decision-making paths enhanced its preferability. However, the meaningfulness of diagnostic and intervention tasks afforded, both in terms of clinical relevance and learners’ own health care roles, was seen as more fundamental to VP design.

CONCLUSIONS: Situationality is intrinsic to ID theory-building. The theory emerging from this research may be informative in the design of VPs teaching processes similar to EFM interpretation.

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Jan 26th, 2:10 PM Jan 26th, 2:40 PM

Formative Research on an Instructional Design Theory for Virtual Patients in Clinical Education: An Electronic Fetal Monitoring Skills Development Case

Marder

INTRODUCTION: Patient contact is the favored strategy for increasing diagnostic expertise. However, changes in clinical education, notably the 80-hour resident duty week, have narrowed trainees’ opportunities for case exposure. Online interactive cases, virtual patients (VPs), may help fill this gap. Design and development heuristics have been advanced, however there is no instructional design (ID) theory of VPs.

PURPOSE: Our aim is to develop an ID theory of VPs to enhance the development of diagnostic skills in medical trainees. Intrapartum EFM data interpretation serves as an initial instructional case for theory development.

METHODOLOGY: Formative research will be used to refine an existing ID theory, Goalbased Scenarios (GBS), to address the needs of EFM novice learners. Residents, midwivesin- training, and nurses will interact with an experimental EFM VP that exposes learners to both branching logic and game technology-based VP platforms. Both objective and perceptual data will be captured and analyzed.

RESULTS: Based on preliminary work, the potential of game technology to reduce the determinism inherent in branching logic VPs and provide more nuanced options for exploring decision-making paths enhanced its preferability. However, the meaningfulness of diagnostic and intervention tasks afforded, both in terms of clinical relevance and learners’ own health care roles, was seen as more fundamental to VP design.

CONCLUSIONS: Situationality is intrinsic to ID theory-building. The theory emerging from this research may be informative in the design of VPs teaching processes similar to EFM interpretation.