SCOTTSBLUFF — University of Nebraska Medical Center nursing and dental hygiene students and faculty gathered in Omaha and Scottsbluff to demonstrate the new learning technology on Monday morning.
UNMC and Western Nebraska Community College partnered to present the statewide learning and collaboration capabilities of the new Interactive Digital iWall.
UNMC faculty and students shared about how the use of the iWall has changed student learning in a positive way.
“So what we’re doing today is the iExcel wall unveiling. This is new to us this year so it’s extremely exciting,” Tiann Colwell, assistant professor in the UNMC College of Nursing, said. “So we started to use it in our classrooms, we’re trying to get away from just lecture-based classrooms. We’re doing more interactive scenarios and case studies. We’re just showing the wall and what its features can do.”
According to a UNMC press release, the Scottsbluff iWall is 8 feet high, 22 feet wide and has nine digital panels. Use of the iWall began in August.
“I’ve used it probably five times with my students,” Colwell said. “It’s great to pull up 3D images, YouTube videos and lab values kind for interaction. They can pull up images and pin them all over, which is kind of fun if they want to think of different things within the scenario.”
Monday’s demonstration was shared between Scottsbluff and Omaha through video chat, which was displayed on a portion of the iWall.
Students from both locations performed a demonstration on the iWall, using a case study of a diabetic woman. The students showed video footage and collaborated on notes and medical history to get the best possible care for the case study patient.
Working individually and sometimes simultaneously, the students exchanged records and showed some of the more complex actions of the iWall.
“We’re very excited about linking Scottsbluff and Omaha using this iWall, using this technology,” Juliann Sebastian, dean of the UNMC College of Nursing, said. “We know now that our students can connect, they can learn together across the campuses in new ways that go above and beyond what we were already doing.
“This gives the students a chance to interact by touching the wall, by pulling down videos, by pulling down information and then making decisions and doing demonstrations right there at the wall just as they get the information,” she said.
Sebastian also talked about the collaborative opportunities the iWall provides, not only across campuses, but across disciplines.
“The other thing it allows us to do is to have students from different disciplines working together so they’re really learning team-based care, they’re learning together,” she said. “I think for the nursing students today and the dental hygiene students to see that they could both use similar information about a patient with diabetes and approach that patient from their different disciplinary perspectives to improve the patient’s health care, I think that’s huge.
Because we know that human beings don’t come in pieces and parts, we’re all whole.”