Nursing is an evolving profession. One does not understand the gravity of scope until ensconced in its matrix. Skiba (2015) in Emerging technologies centre: On the horizon: Implications for nursing education, prepares the reader for future trends in nursing education. A short-range change of 1-2 years would be a blended learning environment driven by the online learning model, exclusive with the instructor and student in charge. This would include a redesign of the learning environment to include technology. The next change would occur in 3-4 years or rather mid-term which focuses on the measurement of learning. The use of quality data, analytics and measurements to determine learning outcomes and target active, at-risk and student success are long overdue. The rainfall of technology warrants the measurability of educational success, in particular in nursing, where the final exam, the NLCEX is based on subsections of successes and weaknesses. Nursing education would move towards a learning dashboard model which has been prevalent in healthcare for decades. Finally, Skiba (2015) examines long-term nursing education trends which involve ‘advancing cultures of change and innovation and greater cross-institutional collaboration’ (p.267). This longitudinal view examines innovation and change across nursing institutions.
Skiba (2015) goes onto highlight three challenges to the above trends in nursing education. A challenge termed ‘solveable’ (Skiba, 2015, p.267) examines blending informal and formal learning processes through digital literacy. This concept is a leap from the traditional classroom setting, creating an online learning experience that is driven by digital literacy. Another challenge in nursing education is the difficult category focusing on personalized learning and complex thinking strategies (Skiba, 2015). As the world becomes more complex, so does student’s understanding and knowledge base. Education cannot be boxed but must be tailored to the learner. The final challenge is termed ‘wicked’ (Skiba, 2015) focusing on rewarding the teacher and recognize the challenge of educating in a world that is dynamic. Nursing education is moving more towards a MOOC (Massively Open Online Courses) model and away from traditional teacher-classroom settings. Challenging the learners self-direction and the educators ability to educate. These challenges are real and not limited to this article.
Nursing education has been, historically, skill-based, and teacher-led. A shift to the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) model for teaching is new and scary to the traditional nurse educator (Skiba, 2015). Along with digital literacy includes digital safety. As with any new advance, nursing education will have to prepare for breakdowns, limited access, viruses, and breaches. It is not time to abandon traditional classroom education for student nurses, the slow integration of technology into the learning environment is more than a trend, more a reality.
Skaba, D.J. (July/August, 2015). Emerging technologies centre: On the horizon: Implications for nursing education. Nursing Education Perspectives, 35(4), 263-266. nursing tech