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Bringing school back to work: Hypertext case studies in microbiology

Peta Edwards and Robert Fox
Curtin University of Technology
In 1990, the first accredited tertiary telecourse in Australia went to air in Western Australia. The telecourse was produced to teach microbiology externally to registered nurses. The telecourse consisted of 20 hours of television with integrated print based study materials, a computer managed test bank and practical laboratory workshops held in regional centres.

In 1993/94 an additional component will be added to the unit: an interactive hypertext computer program in clinical case studies. Evaluation of the microbiology unit has highlighted the need to give practising nurses academic activities that are seen as highly practical and immediately useful to their everyday work. The HyperCard case studies attempts to meet this need. The student is given a choice of patient scenarios within six body areas: urinary tract, respiratory tract, gut, blood, cerebrospinal fluid and genital tract. The student is asked to make a series of decisions based on the patient scenario. The decisions they make take them down a consequential pathway. The case studies are supported by, and interlinked with, a relevant database, a quiz and a tutorial with each card offering feedback on the decisions made by the student. Currently, the program is being trialled by nursing students. As part of the course of their studies, students have been asked to write their own patient scenarios which will be included in later versions of the program.

This paper aims to demonstrate the prototype of the program, outlining the problems encountered and solutions found.

Authors: Peta Edwards, Lecturer in the School of Biomedical Sciences, Curtin University of Technology, GPO Box U1987, Perth WA 6001. Tel: 09 351 7517 Fax: 09 351 2342 Email: Peta_Edwards@qmcc.curtin.edu.au

Robert Fox, Senior Lecturer in the Teaching Learning Group, Curtin University of Technology, GPO Box U1987, Perth WA 6001. Tel: 09 351 7329 Fax: 09 351 2777 Email: Fox_rmk@cc.curtin.edu.au

Please cite as: Edwards, P. and Fox, R. (1994). Bringing school back to work: Hypertext case studies in microbiology. In C. McBeath and R. Atkinson (Eds), Proceedings of the Second International Interactive Multimedia Symposium, 135. Perth, Western Australia, 23-28 January. Promaco Conventions. http://www.aset.org.au/confs/iims/1994/dg/edwards.html

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