Health Educators Need More Tech Training

January 7, 2016 Admin

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From online anatomy atlases and interactive medical websites to entirely new educational platforms, the rise in “e”, or electronic, learning in medicine requires users to successfully navigate different types of technology.

But this is easier said than done, leading many to ask: what’s the best way to address technical roadblocks in medical education?  

It turns out that it may be different for students and teachers.

Previous research shows that increasing the use of educational tech increases learner confidence and achievement, but a recent study found that this “tech confidence” may not be enough for educators.

Instead, instructors need additional targeted training to successfully integrate eLearning tech into the medical setting.

The study, published in the Journal of Multidisciplinary Healthcare, looked at medical professionals who routinely educate peers, students, or patients. Researchers surveyed the educators’ attitudes before and after their first eLearning experience to see how confident and “in control” they felt with the technology.

Confidence was used to measure comfort as a learner, and control to measure comfort as a teacher. Both are required to effectively integrate eLearning tech in medical education.  

After the course, the instructors felt more confident, but less “in control”. This suggests that the educators felt comfortable using eLearning tech for their own edification, but not comfortable enough to integrate it into their teaching practices.

So how can medtech companies increase the effective use of eLearning in health education?

  1. Offer guided training. Self-exploration is a useful learning tool, but not when teaching teachers.
  2. Show your relevance. Forget the “marketing speak” and clearly explain how your product can help your client meet their daily and long-term goals. You may offer cloud-based, interactive surgical training, but what does that mean to surgeons and residents?
  3. Provide continuous support. Whether it’s troubleshooting technical issues or showcasing new product uses, always be available to help and inspire.

To see how the BioDigital Human Platform is leveraged as an eLearning tool in medical education, click here