Examining the role of technology in learning: an evaluation of online clinical conferencing.


The rapidly expanding use of instructional technology requires faculty openness to new teaching and learning situations. This study compared two instructional methods of conducting clinical conferences for baccalaureate nursing students: online versus face-to-face. Quantitative and qualitative data were collected from 77 students in 10 clinical sections of a senior capstone nursing course. Mean scores for all 11 items on the clinical evaluation tool were higher for students who had conferences online than those in face-to-face conferences. Four of the 11 items were statistically significant, reflecting greater participation and convenience for online participants. Online students also reported greater opportunities to reflect on ethical issues. There were no significant differences in quiz scores between the groups when students were tested on content covered in their clinical conferences. Students identified advantages including opportunities for flexibility and equal participation. Barriers included unfamiliarity with technology and lack of face-to-face-contact. The findings suggest that students can successfully achieve the intended purpose of clinical conferences through an online instructional technique. Ongoing research in the use of technology is necessary to meet student needs, enhance student learning, and support evidence-based practice in nursing education.

Cite this paper

@article{Cooper2004ExaminingTR, title={Examining the role of technology in learning: an evaluation of online clinical conferencing.}, author={Cathy A Cooper and Lois B Taft and Mary Thelen}, journal={Journal of professional nursing : official journal of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing}, year={2004}, volume={20 3}, pages={160-6} }