Saturday, February 21, 2009

Linking objects to information in the Second Life virtual birth unit

I am feeling that at last I can see the light at the end of the tunnel for the first stage of the Second Life birth unit project. And my feelings of frustration are changing to optimistic excitement. Yesterday, Leigh Blackall, Deborah Davis and I had a meeting which has led to an agreement to the learning activities and time lines for stage 1 of the project.

Lesson plan
I have the responsibility for developing the lesson plan/s for the activities the students will be engaging with in order to meet their learning outcomes which are:
  • demonstrate an understanding of the role of the midwife in the normal childbirth process;
  • demonstrate effective evidence based, midwifery practice guided by a sound knowledge base.

These plans are for self-directed activities that encourage reflection, which will complement the students' formal lessons. The ideas so far are a treasure hunt, writing a reflection, completing a questionnaire, taking part in a discussion in the class Facebook group. What do you think we could get the students to do that will not be too onerous for them, but be a useful activity that will fit the learning outcomes.

There will also need to be a notice board or such like that gives the students instructions.

Deborah and Leigh have responsibility for developing a short video that will act as an advert for the birth unit; something that can be lodged in YouTube and similar places as well as the birth unit itself, and sent around the place by email, or linked into the institutions' learning management systems.

The video will consist of interviews with everyone involved with building the birth unit.

The other really important job that Deborah and I have to do is agree on what objects we need in the unit; decide how they are to be animated, and how they are to be linked to research evidence. We will then need to summarize the evidence in a short paragraph for the students to read.

What will happen is that a student will see a glass of water, for example, click on it and be shown research evidence about hydration in labour. The student will also be able follow links to the information on a web site (probably Wikieducator). This will allow them to 'bookmark' the information. It will also be a resource that people outside Second Life will be able to utilize.

The objects are:
  • Water pool – link to information about use of water in labour & evidence about waterbirth
  • Sink-link to information about hand washing & infection control
  • Gloves – link to information about sterile technique
  • Bed-link to info about evidence of around birth positions & birth outcomes
  • Food – link to evidence about nutrition in labour
  • Glass of water – link to information/evidence about hydration in labour
  • Rope/birth ball/birthing stool – links to information/evidence about positions in labour
  • Toilet – links to info/evidence about maternal output eg why we test urine in labour
  • BP machine-info/evidence about monitoring in labour
  • Pinard – info/evidence about baby monitoring in labour
  • Vomit bowl – info/evidence about dealing with nausea
  • Fridge – information about ecbolics & active management of third stage
  • Object – information about physiological management of third stage
  • Object-information about vaginal examinations
  • Object – info about hands off’ approach to birth
  • Filing cabinet in midwife’s office – information about documentation
  • Mucus extractor - evidence about sucking out a baby at birth
  • Syringe - evidence about the administration of vitamin K at birth
  • Towel rail to warm towels for baby at birth - information about keeping baby warm at birth
  • Cord clamp - evidence/information about timing of cord clamp

Can you think of any other objects we would need in the birth unit that would link out to research evidence?

The birth unit including objects is due to be finished by the middle of March which is when the SLENZ team has its next face-to-face meeting. It looks as if we'll be introducing the first year midwifery students to the birth unit in the middle of June when they start to look at labour and birth.

We'll be having a grand opening which will include a panel discussion about the principles of birth unit design and how that was integrated into the Second Life project. At this stage, a date has not been decided but it will probably be in May. Plenty of time for me to get a new frock and tiara in honor of the occasion!

Image: 'Evan cuts the umbilical cord' Natashalatrasha


Leigh Blackall said...

Glad to hear you are feeling more confident. I am hoping the write ups for each of the objects can be done within the next 3 weeks, so Aaron has a good chance of competing the unit by late March, and we have a chance at finishing the video before our meeting in Wellington. From what I can tell by your list, I think 3 weeks should be enough yes? I'll find out from Aaron and Clare on Monday if its feasible to get a close to finished stage 1 build by March 23 including video with interview audio (I suspect not, but it would be nice).

Anonymous said...

looking good
ideas as requested:
overall assessment of labour - progress & coping - ie: capture fuller assessment - broader focus than VE and BP.
support in labour?
normal transition of baby at birth - physiology.

Anonymous said...

?assessing the perineum post birth? - evidence re healing....

Anonymous said...

also supporting breastfeeding and evidence re timing of first feed - physiology etc...

Anonymous said...

examination of placenta and membranes...

Anonymous said...

biohazard / sharps - safe disposal of equipment & clean up

Anonymous said...

evidence re skin to skin
similar vein as warm towels / prep of environment for birth = prep of resus equipment...

Sarah Stewart said...

All great suggestions, anonymous. I knew I'd forget things. The other couploe of things that need to go on list are light switch and heat control.

Anonymous said...

thinking of second yrs/3rd yrs - they find it hard to integrate the medico legal aspects into the practical side - any potential to help make the links visible by adding a thing (don't have the language)- thatshows where various legislative things fit or apply?
? the competencies, stds for practice, scope, that link to normal birth? or something like that.
Do you think this can be captured?
just had to help a 3rd yr work out how to assess the medico legal aspects of what she's been doing on her placement - it wasn't obvious to her....but it is clearer now - wondering about the potential to weave this in - to make it even more integrated?

Sarah Stewart said...

Good point, and the answer is that I'm not sure at this point - will have to have a think about it. Any suggestions?

Anonymous said...

hmm will have to think about it - is it too amateur to have a wee MCNZ symbol that crops up and signals in various places the relevant bits - other times the nzcom sign might be relevant or the HDC one? etc
answer is I will keep thinking.

Perhaps there could be some universal key/symbol that denotes "medico legal thought" - instead of a whole bunch of separate ones - so students could then start to identify where that stuff fits - or it would at least hit the practice landscape.

The legislative stuff is dull - so this could liven it up a bit for them - or demonstrate its relevance - or it could just dull up the virtual birth space???? Its a balance.....

Anonymous said...

oh - other than overwhelming the second life space with legislation - could just get the symbol to pop up - and then ask the student a legislation type question relevant to whatever is happening - and they can trot off to relevant website and find the correct info?

Sarah Stewart said...

The only other thing I would say is that we have certain outcomes to deal to, so we can't get too carried away with all the different aspects of midwifery practice we would like to include. One of the things we will incorporate into the scenarios is documentation, so that will raise awareness of legal issues, I hope.