Nursing Classroom Education: The big bang of powerpoint slavery - page 3

by Floridatrail2006

10,037 Views | 48 Comments

I have recently graduated and having a fair amount of time on my hands (jobless, thousands of applications filled out and resumes polished) I wouldn't mind giving an open, honest opinion of educators and the practices. There... Read More


  1. 0
    Quote from dt70
    Electronic format captivates your attention better
    .
    I agree as long as electronic methods are used properly. I wonder if the powerpoint issue is really rooted in technology boom. Nursing instructors are attempting to cater to the young people, like myself, who has grown up into the technological word. However, maybe, the instructor isn't versed enough to make presentations and lectures, as you say, captivating. There may be a generational issue here as well and technology being an issue. The more I think about this I want to hear an educators point of view. Or, maybe, someone to point me into the right direction to understand this better. There must resources and research about nursing education as well as nursing instructor difficulties.
  2. 0
    I'm with you OP! If I wanted to just read the book and power points, I would stay home and just read the book and power points. Unfortunately attendance is mandatory in nursing school. I can't just sit in the comfort of my home at a desk and read my book on my own at my leisure instead of going to class. I love being read to, but that's usually before I'm ready to go to sleep. I don't understand how anybody thinks that reading the text and power points, which obviously haven't been reviewed prior to reading them to the class, is supposed to help anybody learn or ever successfully pass a test.
  3. 0
    It's good to know that others felt the same way in lectures. My mind would drift off shortly after lecture started. I guess I'm okay after all. Something needs changing within the method of teaching. Thanks for the post.
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    My first semester was exactly as you described. Starting with the second semester I enrolled as a hybrid student. I only show up on campus for tests, labs, etc. I do not attend any in class lectures because I can listen to the lecture online and follow the Power Points without having to drive all the way to class.

    One reason I think the instructors follow the Power Points so closely rather than teaching from their own experience is there is a real difference in NCLEX and "real world" nursing. They are trying to teach what will be on the NCLEX.
    marycarney likes this.
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    I taught for 9.5 years in a BSN program. Most of the textbooks if not all of them come with the PowerPoints. The idea if faculty are going to use them is that they edit them to fit the learning needs of the students. They were never meant to be used the way you all are describing. How sad! But then I know faculty that walked out of lecture if the students had not read and if no one had questions would walk out. I disagree with that. My job was to prepare a lecture. The university I worked at would give workshops so faculty could improve their teaching. One I attended was called, "DEATH BY POWERPOINT" which is why I never used powerpoints in lecture, nor movies either. I would make the powerpoints available online to students as some like to printout the handout to take notes. Sadly I don't think anyone evaluates if faculty is doing a good or bad job!!!
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    I had the same problem the first two semesters with wanting to die of boredom with the powerpoints. I'm a second career nurse, and my first experiences with college and grad school were before the powerpoint days. What I had to start doing was pretend that the powerpoints didn't exist, and I approached class as a time to listen and take notes. I pretended they weren't reading from a slide, and I wrote what I heard- making my own connections- physically- to link the notes together. When powerpoints were in front of my I was a completely inactive learner, making that one switch helped me. Then, my review time later was spent with my notes and the powerpoints to see how closely my notes had matched what they were trying to emphasize. I was also the annoying student in class that asked questions relatively frequently when I wanted clarification of something.

    I don't know about other fields but for me science and nursing were both the same- the academic learning is a basis for gaining employment, and then that's where I learned how to "be" that professional. (well, I'm still working on being a nurse- only three months into my first job)
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    I've taught in both ADN and BSN programs (one of each). I taught in the ADN program right when PowerPoint first became available, and I never bothered to use it. I found I was able to be much more creative with plain ol' traditional "overheads" (remember those?) to illustrate my lectures, and various kinds of experiential activities in the classroom (directly related to applying and "using" the content we were studying). When I took a job teaching in BSN program years later, I found that it was an explicit expectation of the program and of the students that I would use PowerPoint. I got so much complaining from the students early on that I didn't have everything outlined on PowerPoint slides for each lecture that I finally succumbed to the peer pressure and started using PP (although I still supplemented with other kinds of A/V content and experiential activites).

    My own experience was that the BSN students I had were the biggest objectors to my introducing different teaching/learning styles in the classroom, and the most insistent that I do everything just the way they were used to being "fed" material. (Ironically?, my ADN students years earlier had been not just willing but eager to go wherever I wanted to take them in the classroom and explore different ways of "playing with" the course content. )
    llg and Tait like this.
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    While I will preface that the overall tone of this thread is negative and blaming, I do understand the frustration.

    As someone finishing their MSN-Ed I have been preparing ppts for class and did a few for my practicum experience with new grads in an acute care hospital setting. Personally I LOVE preparing ppts. I love the challenge of creating something visually stimulating. However, I can not stand sitting through a lecture where someone reads from the ppt. I love nursing, learning, etc etc, but there is something mind-numbing and painful about a dry, lackluster, blue background ppt presentation.

    My goal with ppt is to creating something stimulating, with bites of information to support the conversation of the topic.

    Some of the things ppt can do in a classroom is:

    Give students something tactile to write on.
    Give students something visual to look at.
    Give instructors something that moves conversation along. For example, when I get done discussing a patient scenario or if students get off track with questions, you can always advance the ppt. This draws the student attention back to the fact that there is content to be explored.
    Reminds the instructor of the direction of the class.

    The hard part of nursing education, as others have stated, and really with any educators is passion, ability, and skill. I have a friend who can explain complicated chemistry to anyone. That is a gift. I feel I have always been blessed with an ability to educate, which is why I am continuing my education down that path.

    Nursing education has a particularly hard slant in my opinion when it comes to teaching. There is a rare integration of science and humanity in nursing that often leaves nursing students feeling like their education is worthless. "Oh I just learn rote crap" or "I want to take care of patients, not write care plans". Integrating the two does, as you stated, involve sharing patient stories in my opinion. I didn't understand CHF until I watch a patient sit tri-pod over her table, gasping for air.

    Anyway, back to the point, ppts are intended to support a strong speaker and should be used accordingly, however many also use them as a crutch. While this is frustrating, nursing is about lifelong learning and being able to acquire information through class and your own power. Evaluations are intended for a reason, and even through my MSN I still gave viable feedback. LEt your instructors know, in a respectful way, the details of your frustrations. Don't just say "powerpoints are boring" say "During the med-surg lecture on CHF I felt it would be more helpful to veer away from the powerpoint and provide more patient centered examples from practice."

    If you pick up Patricia Benner's book "Nursing Education: A Radical Call for Change" you will see that nursing faculty on all levels are aware that no specific program (ADN, diploma, BSN) are doing everything right. There are a lot of strengths from each program that need to be combined to bring nursing education to the level it needs to be at. Pretty soon nursing students will be in classes with students of RT, PT, and MD so that the whole process of interdisciplinary care and teamwork can be taught at the most basic of levels.

    Tait
    Floridatrail2006 and elkpark like this.
  9. 0
    Quote from HM-8404
    My first semester was exactly as you described. Starting with the second semester I enrolled as a hybrid student. I only show up on campus for tests, labs, etc. I do not attend any in class lectures because I can listen to the lecture online and follow the Power Points without having to drive all the way to class.

    One reason I think the instructors follow the Power Points so closely rather than teaching from their own experience is there is a real difference in NCLEX and "real world" nursing. They are trying to teach what will be on the NCLEX.

    BBM: ^^^ THAT is exactly the problem - teaching to the test as opposed to the student and their real-world needs. I foolishly signed up to be a super-user for our latest technology roll-out. The 'instructor' for our four day class was A) not a nurse and B) did not use the technology in her work. It was 'death by powerpoint'. She covered what the technogeeks THOUGHT we needed to know, but in no way was the instruction practical.

    As a wannabe educator (although staff development is my 'thing') I think I understand the problem, but am not so sure of the solution.
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    I loathe PP, mostly because I have been able to create fun and engaging presentations much better with Keynote, the Apple presentation product. I always get great reviews with 'em, too. I have hardly ever seen a PP presentation of any kind that didn't have technical glitches or broken effects; that this is still going on after it's been on the market for so long is appalling. And BORING.

    When I taught in BSN and ADN programs, I used overheads, too, because it was easy to write on them and have the whole lecture hall see better than if I were writing on the board. But the best thing I did for my students was give them a note-taking outline. This had the main points (but NOT all the whole content of the lecture), some questions to think about and answer as we went along, and lots of white space for them to fill in-- with notes, doodles, pictures from the slides, whatever. Then they could take it and use it to make more notes from any other source-- texts, journals, study group-- they loved it. Nobody else did this for them.

    It took some extra time and trouble, but as I was always fond of asking, "Why do we care about this?" Because, in this case, we want the students to learn it.

    In my case, I also went to a lot of presentations at professional conferences to see how somebody else presented familiar material. I learned a lot from other folks like that.
    Floridatrail2006 likes this.


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