Assessing nursing students' readiness for e-learning.
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Introduction e-Learning has been integrated and implemented in education and training to the level that it is now a well-established global practice. If used judiciously, e-Learning is a tool that enables active, individual and flexible learning. When integrated into medical education, it offers features that allow lecturers to be not merely content distributors, but also facilitators of learning. Aim The aim of this study was to assess the readiness of students to make the shift from traditional learning, to the technological culture of e-Learning. Methods An observational, cross-sectional, analytical study design was used and data was collected using a validated questionnaire. The sample comprised of all students enrolled in the first year nursing programme at the Durban University of Technology registered for anatomy and physiology in 2013. Informed consent was obtained from each participant prior to conducting the study. Results Three quarters (77/101 76%) of the participants were females. The psychological readiness score was noted to be high in the “could be worse” category (pre-72%, post- 64%). The technological readiness score was noted to be in the “dig deeper” category (pre- 58%, post- 65%) whilst the equipment readiness score fell in the e-Learning “not ready category” (pre- and post- 68%). Discussion The Chapnick Readiness Score Guide was used to analyse psychological, technological and equipment readiness. e-Learning has been identified as a multi-disciplinary field, which is dominated by information technology. Technological and equipment readiness factors of e-Learning are easier to resolve than the psychological readiness factor. Recommendations Although e-Learning could be a key tool in nursing education, a few factors require attention before it can be effectively implemented in this tertiary level education facility.