Thursday, October 18, 2007
Developing 'community' in a formal education program
I tried to 'attend' an online seminar/lecture led by Derek Chirnside as part of the course I am taking part in. It was at 7.30 last Monday. The advantage of being able to 'attend' an event like this is obvious: I do not have to stir myself away from my cosy home. The downside, I discovered, is that one has to negotiate family obligations at the same time, like cooking the dinner. Consequently, I am having major problems trying to remember what was said for this reflection (which is a course requirement). So I am going to cheat and say that I agree with Carolyn's reflections. Like Carolyn, the main thing I got out of the session was the discussion about open and closed 'classes'. I agree that we would need a mix of open and closed resources/forums because we have legal, professional and ethical expectations about disclosure of information. We would not expect midwifery students to disclose their experiences with a woman or midwife in an open forum that anyone on the Internet could look at-we may open ourselves up to charges of breaching the New Zealand Privacy Act. Nevertheless, there is much to recommend the sharing of resources that can be accessed by students and midwives anywhere online. After all, midwifery knowledge can hardly be copyrighted by one individual school of midwifery.
My main thoughts from the evening are:
1. How can we teach students to share information online in a professional way that protects confidentiality but encourages deep reflection and learning ( this needs to be applied equally to face-to-face interactions)?
2. How can we protect our intellectual property (and meet institutional requirements) yet share it in a way that promotes sharing of knowledge and invites collaboration?
The example I gave about how the open/closed forums could be run is this:
in an open forum I would share information and facilitate discussion about post partum hemorrhage (excessive bleeding after a baby is born) - PPH;
in a closed forum, we would explore the students' individual clinical experiences of PPH.
Any thoughts about this?