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Developing our online Refresher content for Midwives

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Developing our online Refresher content for Midwives

By Ruth King, Midwifery Advisor, Education Unit


Back in early 2017 the Education Unit started the process of reviewing the content we have previously made available for midwives wishing to refresh their knowledge particularly in the areas of Antenatal, Labour and Birth and Postnatal care.  These courses were originally developed in partnership with Queensland Health, Allison Shorten PhD, RN, RM, FACM and Julia Monaghan RN, RM, MHM, GradCertTerEd (Antenatal) and NSW Health and Heather Gulliver (Labour & Birth and Postnatal). Delivery was in an online format with midwives choosing to access the course content as and when they identified a gap or need in their professional development.

Reviewing content and requirements

Times (research and some practices) have changed since the courses were originally written and so we have undertaken a thorough review of the content to ensure that the most recent evidence and best practice guidelines are reflected.  The look and feel of the course material (so the user experience) also required a refresh which has resulted in us engaging with an external course developer to incorporate the new ACM branding along with changes to assessments, activities and navigation to deliver an easy to access and engaging experience.

Engaging members

Late in 2017 we put out a number of expressions of interest for assistance to review the course content (be part of our testing team) and to be the ‘Midwife face’ of the courses as a presenter.  The interest and engagement from the membership was fabulous with more high quality expressions received than we had places for at this time.

Creating a smart and engaging user experience

In early 2018 the development of the Antenatal Refresher content into a dynamic online course began.  Edmore Training are leading this work and we are super lucky to have an amazing project manager Raj Singh guiding us each step of the way as well as some talented technical gurus behind the scenes creating interactive magic from otherwise bland (but interesting) written text.  Huge thanks to individuals who have gifted and shared images for these courses.  Your magical photos are helping to enhance the information by providing pictorial representation and visual enjoyment!

Images

We have engaged a photographer and we have also been using images we have in our files to make the course experience as authentic as possible (as well as related to the content) and not looking like staged settings!

If you think you might have images that would be suited to courses with content focussing on Labour & Birth or the Postnatal period (including neonatal resuscitation, breastfeeding and epidural/spinal anaesthesia) we would LOVE for you to consider sharing them with us for inclusion in our courses – as they say a picture tells a 1000 words.  We would give full credit for the photo to those in the image and the photographer

Testing of the antenatal course begins

As we head into the 2nd half of 2018 it is exciting to see the developments come to fruition.  The testing team are well into the Pilot* review of the Antenatal Refresher course and their considered feedback is being incorporated to ensure that best user experience for midwives.  Our chosen presenter has also undertaken their presentation role with dozens of excellent videos created to complement the written and other visual or static content and activities that are included in each module of the course.

Pilot

This is where the draft course modules that have been developed are placed into our Learning Management System – Midwives Learn – for the testing team to access, as if they were a user (so they get the full experience of how it will work on their computer).  They provide us feedback about navigation and flow, ease (or not) of access, advising if any issues with links or downloads or any interactive activities, and sometime advising suggestions for images or minor content changes).  We then use this feedback to make required changes.

Content review for labour & birth and postnatal underway

The review of the Labour & Birth and Postnatal course content has been completed by our dedicated midwifery subject matter expert with the first review of the content by our Midwifery Education Advisory Committee underway.  Once development begins the content and navigation will also be reviewed and tested by the testing team (either the one we have currently – if their workloads permit – or a new set of individuals).

What next

Keep an eye out in your member newsletter or our social media channels for future updates about course development and releases.  

You may also see calls for people to be engaged in quiz writing or future course development or review teams. We’d love for you to get engaged if you have the suitable skills, passion and time!

Quiz writing

This is an essential element of any online course is a good quiz that can assess an individual’s understanding of the content that has been covered.  We have recently had an EOI out and received some great feedback, but we are always open to more assistance as every person will bring a fresh and different perspective.  Contact us at education@midwives.org.au if quiz writing is your thing or something you would like to try out, and earn some CPD as you go!