Resource Library

The Resource Library contains a collection of higher education learning and teaching materials flowing from projects funded by the Commonwealth of Australia including those from the Australian Learning and Teaching Council.

Results may be sorted filtered by keywords.

9 resources found.

Learning and Teaching Guide: A handbook to support institutions in implementing programs for assisting the development of communication and life skills in veterinary students

Jennifer Mills, Glen Coleman, Michael Meehan, John Baguley
Murdoch University
2009
Murdoch University
Sydney, UQ
Handbook Download Document (4.54 MB)

 

This 80-page handbook provides seven lesson plans, four assessment tools, fifteen supporting materials such as marking rubrics, and a bibliography to support training in communication for veterinary care.  The handbook enables a lecturer to teach skills and insights into empathy – essentially emotional intelligence – for professional veterinary practice, with particular attention to the owner-pet bond.

Teaching a professional skills module for veterinary students?  This handbook is meant for you.  If you are trying to teach professional skills in any field, such as engineering, this handbook can reveal useful insights, though the examples provided will not be directly applicable.

The handbook’s lesson plans are presented succinctly.  They include a one-paragraph review of the literature to justify the need for the lesson as well as a list of steps required to complete the activity.  Detailed resources may be found at the back of the handbook.  This format keeps the lesson plan to a single page, presenting it as an outline to help selection and stimulate thought.

The lesson plans are not provided with an estimate of how long each activity can take.  Nor are there strategies for demonstrating to colleagues why one should include each lesson in the curriculum, though one can follow up with the project principals for these insights.

It will take some effort to integrate these communication activities into science-based subjects, for those who have insufficient ‘space’ in their professional skills modules, or who indeed have no such module.  That said, the teaching strategies are well conceived, with lots of student group discussion and background theory to help the lecturer to understand, and relay to the students, key aspects of the nature of humans and their pets.

Those who are familiar with facilitating discussions will find adopting these materials to be easier than those who lack such experience.  If you are not yet comfortable with facilitative teaching, then you might want to have a colleague who specialises in communication at your side during development and implementation of lessons (e.g., someone from psychology or doctor-patient communication training).  Note that some exercises call for people to role-play clients; so check on resources needed before launching into an element of this curriculum. The bottom line – good stuff, but you may need a coach by your side (or on the phone).

Curriculum Development and Assessment of Methods to Enhance Communication and Life Skills in Veterinary Students

Jennifer Mills, John Baguley, Glen Coleman, Michael Meehan
Murdoch University
2009
Murdoch University
Sydney, UQ

 

This website provides information, links, and resources about how to teach communication and professional skills to veterinary students.  The web pages offer a description of the ALTC project, the opportunity to download outputs such as a workbook, and contact information for key individuals who were involved in the project.

If you are teaching veterinary students, either as a core lecturer or someone contributing to a module on professional skills, the resources provided will be helpful.  The core team, who are from three universities, make a compelling case for the value of this material to veterinary students.

It is evident that the authors have engaged someone in developing these materials who has a strong understanding of human communication and how to cultivate empathy with a client.  The case studies, scenarios, role plays, and suggested discussion topics – offered in the downloadable workbook – have the ring of truth to them.  Background discussion from the project report (and, to some extent, the workbook) cites relevant literature on practitioner-client communication.  Also, evidence is provided documenting the impact of these learning activities on students.

If you are not teaching veterinary students and you are a lateral thinker, you could adapt the materials presented here for another discipline.  I was considering how useful some of the insights provided would be for students in engineering, for example.

In initially using these materials, it would be handy to have a communication specialist looking over your shoulder.  No matter how comprehensive the explanation of learning activities is, you may not ‘hit the mark’ unless you are already familiar with the style of teaching that is required and be comfortable with the issues that may arise in the guided discussions.

Note that not everything on the website will prove to be useful.  The collection of materials, from workbook to conference posters, seems extensive, but it is also eclectic - a bit of a grab bag.  Head straight for the Handbook for useful information.  Turn to the Project Report for more in depth information on how the materials faired in tests with students.

Virtual microscopy for enhancing learning and teaching

Rakesh Kumar, Gary Velan, Patrick de Permentier, Paul Adam, Stephen Bonser, Michael Beal
The University of New South Wales
2009
The University of New South Wales
Final report Download Document (1.88 MB)

Leading for effective partnering in clinical contexts

Professor Debra Creedy, Professor Amanda Henderson
Griffith University
2009
Griffith University
Final Report Download Document (1.31 MB)

Application of a clinical staff development model (Teaching on the Run) to allied health and multi-professional audiences and to rural and remote settings

Fiona Lake, Margaret Potter, Derrick Webley, Chris Norman
The University of Western Australia
2009
The University of Western Australia
CUT, UQ
Fellowship Report Download Document (656.17 KB)

Enhancing Communication and Life Skills in Veterinary Students: Curriculum Development and Assessment of Methods

Jennifer Mills, John Baguley, Glen Coleman, Michael Meehan
Murdoch University
2009
Murdoch University
Sydney, UQ
Final report Download Document (218.38 KB)

This 25-page report details how the project team developed communication skills resources for those who teach professional skills modules for veterinary students.  If you are teaching veterinary students, either as a core lecturer or someone contributing to a module on professional skills, the Workbook that this team produced will be of the most help, and this report can give you additional confidence in using it.  The core team, who are from three universities, make a compelling case in this report for the value of the material to veterinary students.  It is evident that the authors have engaged someone who has a strong understanding of human communication and how to cultivate empathy with a client.  There is discussion of the theory of emotional intelligence and similar factors that one must understand to address deficits in student training that the report identifies in the literature and in surveys of students.  It is interesting to read about what their surveys found to be challenging in client consultations by male students but not as challenging by female students, and vice versa.    Evidence is provided documenting the impact of the learning activities developed in this project on students, and that should provide you with confidence and rationale for employing these materials, as alluded to above.  If you are not teaching veterinary students, and you are a lateral thinker, you could read into the efforts documented here how to create materials for your own discipline.  I was considering how useful some of the insights provided could be in creating teaching strategies to use with students in engineering, for example.  If you would like to understand the study results in depth, it would be handy to have a communication specialist to consult.   Note that not everything in this report will prove to be useful.  There is a collection of research outcomes and theoretical justifications that could be handy as background information, but they are not essential for employing the actual teaching materials, which are in the Workbook.

Paramedic education: developing depth through networks and evidence-based research

Associate Professor Eileen Willis, Mr Timothy Pointon, Associate Professor Peter O'Meara
Flinders University
2009
Flinders University
CSU, ECU, Monash, QUT, UTAS, VU
Final report Download Document (648.91 KB)

Assessment of Physiotherapy Practice (APP)

Megan Dalton, Jennifer Keating, Megan Davidson
Griffith University
2009
Griffith University

A preliminary search of the physiotherapy literature revealed a lack of systematic studies to determine the validity and reliability of instruments for assessing clinical competence of students in physiotherapy programs worldwide (Beckman et al. 2005; Stickley 2005). The project group therefore proposes a method for the development of a standardised assessment procedure that meets the needs of students and educators and provides valid and reliable measurements of student clinical competence.

Specific project aims were to:

  1. develop a competency based assessment instrument to evaluate the performance of physiotherapy students in the workplace;
  2. investigate and refine the psychometric properties of the instrument; and
  3. investigate the viability of using the instrument as a measure of physiotherapy competency in the practice environment

La Trobe, Monash
Final report Download Document (5.22 MB)

The Assessment of Physiotherapy Practice instrument (APP) is a standardised clinical assessment tool with rigorous field testing behind its development.  The APP has been endorsed by the Council of Physiotherapy Deans of Australia and New Zealand (CPDANZ) which has strongly recommended its use in university entry level programs in Australasia. The APP is listed as a validated tool for the assessment of student clinical competence by the Australian Physiotherapy Council in its Accreditation of Entry Level Physiotherapy Programs -- A Manual for Universities. The APP is now used in the majority of accredited entry level physiotherapy programs throughout Australasia.

The resource comprises the Assessment of Physiotherapy Practice Clinical Education Resource Manual and a DVD. The Resource Manual contains a comprehensive description of the APP instrument including desirable professional behaviours and practical performance targets which make up the performance indicators for each of the 20 items as well as detailed guidance for scoring of each item.

The DVD cannot be used as a stand-alone resource. It is provided to support clinical educators in applying the APP and/or for training in assessment using the APP. Prior to viewing the DVD therefore, users will need to familiarise themselves with the APP instrument and its associated performance indicators, as well as how best to use the case studies provided on the DVD.

The resource will be of great value to academics involved in preclinical and clinical education of physiotherapy students, to clinical educators and preceptors in the field and indeed to students themselves as a self-directed learning tool. Because of its standardisation and wide adoption in Australasia, there is a great potential for the APP to be used for benchmarking purposes and for comparison of assessment outcomes in physiotherapy programs which may be quite varied in their design and delivery.

Facilitating the integration of evidence based practice into speech pathology curricula: a scoping study to examine the congruence between academic curricula and work based needs

Dr Leanne Togher
The University of Sydney
2009
The University of Sydney
La Trobe, Macquarie, UoN, UQ
Final report Download Document (816.67 KB)

This resource profiles two surveys that sought to elicit the views of a representative sample of academic staff and clinical educators in regards to the integration and application of evidence based practice (EBP) in speech pathology education. The gaps and challenges of incorporating EBP into curricula and clinical education and clearly discussed. The survey was undertaken in 2009 as a component of a project funded by the Australian Learning and Teaching Council.

The resource, while focused on speech pathology education, will have broader application for a range of health professions where the challenge of integrating EBP into academic and clinical education is a perennial problem. The results of the survey, while not particularly surprising, are illuminative and identify some of the key issues that educators face in creating a culture where EBP is integral to contemporary practice rather than simply another academic 'subject'.

This resource can be accessed as a pdf document as part of the full report of the ALTC project. The full report also provides an interesting contextual discussion of the issues surrounding speech pathology education and EBP.

The strengths, challenges and recommendations sections of this resource will be valuable to those involved in health professional education.

The resource is succinct (14 pages) and written in plain English. Some of the tables included in the report, although relevant, will take some time to interpret.

The authors correctly identify the limitations of the approach taken in this study, ie potentially valuable student perspectives were not sought, and the surveys were based on self-report rather than observational/behavioural measures. The resource also mentions observation of four case studies but provides only limited discussion or analysis of this aspect of the study. However, the complete case studies are available as part of the full ALTC report, as are the surveys.