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Virtual worlds for chiropractic education feasible or foolish






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  • Good morning. Today I will be discussing the feasibility of using virtual worlds in chiropractic education based on a project completed at NWHSU this year.
  • This slide depicts just a few of the virtual worlds currently available. A virtual world is an interface that allows users to interact using text or chat in a computer-based 2D or 3D simulated environment populated by avatars.
  • Second Life is the virtual world most commonly used for educational purposes and it also supports a significant and growing health care education presence2.
  • Why virtual worlds? The 2007 HorizonReport predicted that virtual learning spaces would impact higher education and be adopted on a wide scale basis within the next two to three years… While this wide scale adoption has not yet occurred, the use of virtual worlds in education is growing considerably.
  • A number of health care professions currently have a virtual educational presence in Second Life including PharmacyPharmacy case histories in a virtual worldUsing their Second Life avatars, UNC-Chapel Hill Pharmacy students visit a virtual representation of Greensboro’s Moses Cone Family Practice Center. There, they learn the location of the exam room and waiting room and the layout of the building. They view videoclips demonstrating a successful and effective patient interview. Another pharmacy student, whose avatar has the role of patient, is given all the information they need to effectively play their role. The patient is invited into the exam room for a consultation with the pharmacy student who takes the case history. The interview is conducted with the voice chat feature of Second Life, allowing the students to talk to each other in real-time as if they were conducting a real interview at the Family Practice Center. At the conclusion of the interview, the “patient” leaves the Exam Room, and the pharmacy student proceeds to a quiz station wherehe or she takes a quiz to assess the effectiveness of the information obtained during the case history interview. Once the review is completed, the results are e-mailed to the pharmacy instructor to assure him or her that the student has completed the modulesuccessfully.
  • Many medical education institutions including the Indiana University School of Medicine
  • Nursing as shown in the postpartum simulation created by the University of AucklandPostpartum simulation scenarioThe entire floor of the central building has been dedicated to the simulation, andincludes a lecture area complete with whiteboard, a round-table discussion area fordebriefing, and the medical simulation itself. The simulation comprises asingle hospital room, but it is surrounded by a one-way curtain (see in, but not out)that prevents participants from seeing people in the observation seating area. Thesimulation requires student nurses to interview a patient in the bed (played by theinstructor) and to make appropriate clinical decisions following the discovery ofprofuse bleeding (fig. 11).
  • Dentistry at Texas A&M and the University of MarylandUsing an online 3D virtual world called “Second Life,” Drs. Hutchins, Wathen and colleagues have begun to develop a grand rounds dental experience. They envision inviting clinicians in various specialties to present important, evidence-based issues as the subject matter of each grand round. Basic science faculty will participate to provide foundational support for the integration of the subject matter. The format to be used will include several short segments modeled after the Burton and Roth grand round format (New England Journal of Medicine 340:1516, 1999).U of M http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7tvdySF0J1sA US dental school is opening the doors of the first-ever 3D virtual dental education facility.students will be able to ‘experience' aspects of dentistry, ranging from lessons in dental hygiene practices to infection control and anatomy.
  • We started our investigation of this question with a focus group of students who suggested that perhaps SL could be used as an elective option for for fulfilling some of their clinical education observation hours with a site that just happens be a virtual one instead of in real life. A focus group was formed to begin exploring this possibility9. Students were intrigued by the concept, but were concerned about time and technology constraints. They also expressed an unwillingness to substitute a virtual world experience for hands-on electives. As an alternative, the focus group participants suggested that certain Second Life interactions could be presented as options for fulfilling clinical education hours. Based on this feedback we decided to use Second Life to simulate a clinical patient interviewing experience. A virtual world chiropractic clinic could expose patients to diverse patient populations not otherwise available in the typical patient interviewing curricula. Students could interact with geriatric patients, or patients with disabilities, and could interview real patients with real histories in real time. The use of avatars offers some degree of anonymity for the patient, perhaps making them more willing to share their health histories for educational purposes
  • I then created a virtual chiropratic clinic in SL. I have had two courses in SL but do not consider myself an expert and I have no coding experience. So this process is definitely possible for the average educational institution. Clinical Rotations are required, 'one-time' observations at various chiropractic sites around the metro area. ThisVoluntary Clinical Rotation
  • During the winter of 2010 5 students volunteered to conduct a virtual interview with a geriatric patient in Second Life.Moodle was used to disseminate information such the patient intake forms completed by the real patient. Instruction manuals were developed to guide students through the process of downloading the software, creating a customized avatar, and interacting with the virtual world. An avatar was created for a 72-year old real-life patient with multiple health care issues, and the patient was trained to use this avatar
  • Each student’s avatar met the patient’s avatar in the virtual clinic and conducted the interview using voice chat. Following completion of the interview, students completed a survey comprised of multiple choice and open-ended questions regarding the experience.
  • MoodlePatient intake forms, instructions, Second Life User Manual
  • Upon review of data collected from the student surveys, several common themes emerge
  • The students found that the real-time chat dialogue was valuable- “…I could hear his voice and he responded to questions in a way that was not just a script”,
  • Technology was an issue both in terms of the time required to become proficient as well as difficulty in getting the technology to run reliably. A powerful computer with an up-to-date video card and a fast broadband internet connection are required for optimal performance. IT department are not trained in this software and haven’t budged for support. Sound can be particularly problematic on many levels from using integrating microphones to issues with university firewalls. Time to learn!In a typical educational setting the problems with using Second Life for teaching and learning are related primarily to technical issues. The software is free, but must be downloaded. Institutional IT departments may resist installing and providing support for this program. Sound can be particularly problematic, and may be blocked by firewalls. When voice chat is used on campus, a sound-proof space must be available., and university firewalls are frequently an issue. In addition, participants require a significant amount of time to learn how to navigate and interact in-world. During the current project we experienced issues with all of the above.
  • Students also had difficulty viewing the avatar as a “real” patient, expressing that the lack of body language obscured an important part of the clinical interview. They found that “not being able to see the person, inspecting them, watching for visual cues” was challenging. Overall, these students felt that they would rather interact with a patient in the real world. There are a number of other issues that make Second Life challenging to use in the chiropractic educational setting including the very nature of chiropractic itself. As a profession, we pride ourselves on our low-tech, high-touch approach to patient care. Second Life offers the opposite to this type of encounter, which may make it difficult for the chiropractic student to consider a patient encounter in Second Life as anything but insincere. These students had difficulty suspending disbelief enough to truly see the patient behind the avatar, and were frustrated by the inability to communicate through body language.
  • Another challenge is the very nature of chiropractic itself. As a profession, we pride ourselves on our low-tech, high-touch approach to patient care. Second Life offers the opposite to this type of encounter, makingit difficult for the chiropractic student to see this type of patient encounter as anything but insincere.
  • So, back to the original question. Is it feasible to implement and use Second Life at a chiropractic institution. Yes- at least at our institution and on a small scale basis.
  • However, does this necessarilymean that chiropractic educators SHOULD begin using virtual world technology?
  • Is it simply enough to say that if other health care professions are teaching in virtual worlds, we should follow suit?
  • Are we going to find that as enrollment of Millennials increases, demands for cutting edge experiences such as these will also increase? If so, will we be ready?
  • It is my opinion that we really need to continue to explore the possibilities inherent in virtual education. Technology is improving every day. The project I have described is just one possibility in a multitude of educationaloptions available in SL. Based on our student surveys perhaps patient interviewing with upper level students isn’t the best way to proceed intitially. Perhaps we should explore other options.Weneed to think creatively about how we could use these virtual workspaces to enhance the chiropractic educational experience. if not patient interviewing then perhaps a virtual x-ray positioning lab, student dialogues with disability groups10, integrated clinical experiences offering our students interaction with others from across the world. The possibilities are limitless.

Virtual worlds for chiropractic education  feasible or foolish Virtual worlds for chiropractic education feasible or foolish Presentation Transcript

  • The Use of Virtual Worlds in Chiropractic Education: Feasible or Foolish?
    Glori Hinck, RD, MS, DC
    Associate Professor
    Northwestern Health Sciences University
    Bloomington, MN USA
    Project Team:
    Jeremy Thompson, BS
    Lynne Hvidsten, DC, MBA
    Mary Berg, MA
  • What is a virtual world?
    2D or 3D computer-based simulated enviromment
    Populated by avatars
    Text and/or chat communication
  • Second Life
    Most commonly used for educational purposes
    Supports significant health care education presence
  • http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2007_Horizon_Report.pdf
    “… virtual learning spaces will impact higher education and be adopted on a wide scale basis within the next two to three years….
  • Second Life: Pharmacy education
    UNC-Chapel Hill
    Virtual patient interviews
    http://its.unc.edu/InsideITS/insideitsnews/CCM1_010995 5-30-09
  • Second Life: Medical education
    Indiana University School of Medicine
  • Second Life: Nursing education
    University of Auckland
    Postpartum simulation scenario
  • Second Life: Dentistry education
    Texas A&M
    University of Maryland
  • Second Life: Psychiatry
  • Second Life in Medical & Health Education
  • Second Life: Chiropractic education?
    A review of the literature and the Web finds no reference to utilizing Second Life as part of chiropractic education
  • Second Life: Chiropractic?
  • The Use of Virtual Worlds in Chiropractic Education: Feasible or Foolish?
    Focus Group Students
    Concerns re: time/technology
    Suggested elective option for clinical education hours
  • NWHSU Second Life Project
  • Virtual Interview with Geriatric Patient
    Winter 2010
    5 students (T8)
    Avatar created for 72 year-old real-world patient
    Students created own avatars
  • Virtual Interview with Geriatric Patient
    Met in virtual clinic
    Interview using voice chat
    Follow-up Survey Monkey
  • Moodle site
    Patient intake forms
    Second Life User Manual
  • Common Themes…..
  • Real time chat valuable
    “…I could hear his voice and he responded to questions in a way that was not just a script”
    Gained insight regarding the challenges in taking a history from a geriatric patient, “They tend to jump around…they also have a lot of other problems besides the primary complaint they are seeing you for.”
  • Challenges….
    Primary Problem: Technical issues
    Software is free but must be downloaded
    Hardware requirements
    High-speed internet
    IT support
    University firewalls
    **Significant time investment by participants to learn how to navigate and interact within world
  • Challenges….
    “Not being able to see the person, inspecting them, watching for visual cues”
    Would rather interact with a patient in the real world.
    These students had difficulty suspending disbelief enough to truly see the patient behind the avatar, and were frustrated by the inability to communicate through body language
  • Challenges….
    The nature of chiropractic itself…
  • Feasible?
    Image cc- xgray
  • Should chiropractic educators use virtual world technology?
    Imperial College Virtual Hospital
  • Follow the trends?
    Photo cc- treeday77
  • Millennial demand?
  • Recommendations
    Continue to explore virtual chiropractic education
    Technology improving rapidly
    Think creatively
    X-ray positioning, student dialogues with disability groups, integrated clinical experiences
  • Thank you!
    See you in Second Life?
    Dr. Glori HinckGlorious Guisse
  • Second Life
    Second Life (http://secondlife.com/
    Most popular virtual world platform for education
    Computer/web- based simulated multi-media environment
    3-D social network
    Users interact via avatars
    Voice chat/text chat/instant messaging
    Integrate with Moodle via SLOODLE
    Boulos, M.N., Hetherington, L., & Wheeler, S. 2007. Second Life: an overview of the potential of 3-D virtual worlds in medical & health education. Health Information and Libraries Journal. 24. 233-245.