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Monday, 11 August 2008 22:13

Andrew was appointed to deliver the module ‘Social Justice and Health: Power, Politics and Policies’ in the academic year 2008/9 for second year undergraduate nurses. His interest in digital video and new approaches to learning drove him to deliver a module highly populated by YouTube resources during lectures.  Furthermore, the module assessment was changed to a group work project requiring students to create a video that they produced and performed in. This approach was piloted in the first year and despite being subject to some technical challenges, students achieved good assessment marks and gave positive evaluation feedback. During the second year of delivery in 2008/9, the module ran smoothly and both assessments and evaluations were increasingly positive. In 2009 at a CIL event Andrew met and created a partnership with a fellow researcher, Claire Mann, a PhD student with a focus on educational research and overlapping interests in the benefit of technology on the student learning experience. Working in partnership they decided to investigate the benefits of this approach and we were successful in obtaining a small amount of funding for this research. (GRASS fund, School of Nursing, £1000)


The research study undertook a phenomenological approach to measure student approaches to learning, which is well recognised in Higher Education research literature (Prosser and Trigwell 2001). This approach building on the work of Biggs (1979) used the ASSIST questionnaire which is based on Marton and Saljo's (1976) contrast of deep and surface learning, combined with the strategic approach to studying identified by Entwistle and Ramsden (1983). This is a common approach adapted by many others in Higher Education research (Entwistle, Tait & McCune, 2000) and several examples are published in Nursing Education journals (Cowan et al 2004, Mansouri et al 2006, Stokes 2008) The ASSIST questionnaire was administered at the start of the module to measure prior approaches to learning on the Nursing programme and then re-administered at the end of the module to measure approaches to learning in this module. From analysing this data, it was possible to measure the approaches to learning used across the cohort, and to evaluate any changes in approach to learning in this particular module. To supplement the statistical data provided, interviews were conducted to gain qualitative data and feedback on the use of Youtube in the module. The interviews were conducted peer-to-peer using structured questions and answers and recorded onto a form provided. This approach ensured confidentiality of student feedback (from the module leader) and offered opportunity for students to use the research as an opportunity as shared reflection on their learning experience. A wiki was constructed to house all video resources for the module in a central location and encourage additional opportunities for feedback.

The findings from the research were interesting and proved that the use of YouTube helps the move up the continuum from surface to deep learning through offering alternative viewpoints forcing debate and discussion and links between theory and practice. Students also emphasised the benefits of this approach for their engagement. This evidence identifies good reasons to train more staff in practical and theoretical application of YouTube as a resource for teaching and learning. For more information about the dissemination of our work, please follow the link.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 09 November 2010 21:22