The Charles Darwin University vHospital®: Creating an Authentic Virtual Learning Environment for Undergraduate Nursing Students

The Charles Darwin University vHospital®: Creating an Authentic Virtual Learning Environment for Undergraduate Nursing Students

Gylo (Julie) Hercelinskyj (Gylo (Julie) HercelinskyjCharles Darwin University, Australia) and Beryl McEwan (Charles Darwin University, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-114-0.ch014
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Abstract

This chapter presents an overview of an innovative teaching approach in an undergraduate nursing degree at Charles Darwin University (CDU). The authors describe the development and initial integration into the first year clinical nursing subject of a virtual learning space using a case-based approach to address some of the issues associated with an externalised Bachelor of Nursing program. In addition, the use of the CDU vHospital® in supporting early role socialisation into nursing and professional identity of first year nursing students will be explored. The findings and outcomes of formal and informal evaluations of the resource are also presented. Lastly, the authors identify recommendations for future development and areas for potential future research.
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Introduction

In an externalized nursing program, it is a challenge to facilitate an awareness of, and engagement with, the complexity and reality of tertiary education and nursing practice. This chapter describes an innovative teaching approach in an undergraduate nursing degree in Australia designed to enhance the learning opportunities and early professional engagement for students enrolled in a program by distance learning. Through the presentation of an exemplar case, the development process and initial integration of the Charles Darwin University Virtual Hospital® (CDU vHospital®) into the Bachelor of Nursing program as a web-based learning platform is described and the benefits and relevance for students and the program are discussed.

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