Optometry Students Use Gamified Learning Orientations to Prepare for Clinical Internships

pcc-patient-encounterEach year students enrolled in the College of Optometry’s doctoral program must complete internships in both Optometry Pediatric Services and Vision Therapy Services at our own Eye Care Institute in the PCC. As part of their pre-clinical training this Fall, the students completed their orientation using a more innovative approach – a series of gamified learning tutorials using a combination of Articulate, video and Unity3D. The idea for the gamified learning approach grew out of the last CAPE workshop on gamification in November 2014. One of the attendees was Ida Chung, OD, MSHE, FCOVD, FAAO, Assistant Dean of Learning in the College of Optometry. “For me, the Gamification Workshop opened up a world of possibilities to enhance optometric education, beginning with the clinical education orientation. Gamification is interactive, adaptable, and provides opportunities for practice while student progress is monitored and their learning is assessed. An additional advantage in utilizing a gamified learning approach is that it could better prepare new students for patient care and reduce staff time with repeated orientations.” Following the workshop, Dr. Chung, approached Educational Technology Strategist Jerry Kellogg with a proposal. A needs assessment was conducted in the PCC Eye Care Institute which included interviews with key members of the Optometry faculty and a videotaped walkthrough of the facility. Current orientation materials created in PowerPoint were reviewed, and a blueprint defining the scope, objectives and content of the orientation was developed. It was at this point that a decision was made to create two separate orientations – one for Pediatric Optometry Services and one for Vision Therapy Services – that could be taken independently of each other. pcc-blueprint-excerpt Since much of the orientation consisted of didactic information on rules, policies, procedures and resources, Articulate was chosen as the primary instructional platform. It enabled not only the incorporation of media rich content, but also the level of interactivity necessary to keep self-directed learners engaged. Cherishea Coats, Educational Technology Support Specialist, was assigned to build the nine Articulate lessons that would needed. pcc-ehr-formAs the project moved into the production phase, the various assets that would be needed to populate the Articulate lessons had to be created. With help from Dr. Chung, Chief of Vision Therapy Kristi Jensen, OD, FCOVD, Assistant Professor Kim Walker Delehman, OD, FCOVD, and Chief of Pediatric Optometry Services John Tassinari, OD, FAAO, DCOVD, the necessary images, recordings, and video footage were captured. One set of exercises on the documentation of vision therapy services used screen captures from the Eye Institute’s Electronic Health Record (EHR). Cherishea Coats: “Using Articulate’s simulation feature, we created an exercise could record and score students’ screen movements as they navigated to a screen capture of specific EHR screen or portion of a screen and entered the required information.” Starting with storyboards generated from the project blueprint, Cherishea translated orientation content into the Articulate software and added navigation and interactivity. She also had to integrate the voice-over recordings and digital assets produced by CMS Photographer Mirza Hasanefendic and Interactive Media Designer Joe Marilo. pcc-articulate-matchingpcc-articulate-video                   pcc-consulting-roomA major part of both orientations consisted of familiarizing students with the physical layout of the Eye Care Institute and where to find things such as test equipment, supplies, and forms. For this specific objective, a virtual 3D re-creation of the ECI was created by Educational Applications Designer Jeff Macalino, and populated with photos of the items listed above. “To accurately capture the environment we shot a lot of reference images that were later used to create the virtual version of the Eye Care Institute. Although there was a heavy use of 3D elements in the application, I was able to save a lot of time by using 2D images to show items in cabinets, drawers, and shelves.” A brief prerecorded demo of the exercise can be seen here. Educational Applications Developer Eissa Jamil then used Unity3D to enable students to interact with objects in the scene. The programming allowed students to open doors, cabinets, and drawers; select objects; and add them to their inventory. Students were awarded points for not only finding specific items, but also returning them to their proper location. pcc-posttest-caseUnity3D was also used to create the posttests that would provide the final assessment of student competency. In addition to being case-based, the posttests incorporated a variation of the scavenger hunt exercise. The Articulate lessons, Unity exercises and posttests were ultimately posted and made available to students through a Web page for each of the optometric services. Beta testing with the first group of students began on August 28, 2016. Future plans to expand the PCC Optometry Orientations include more detailed information on specific tests and test equipment, additional video tutorials on how to manage pediatric patients, and simulated operation of specific devices, such as the remote control for a digital display. “I see gamified learning as excellent resource for our students not only for orientation, but as they progress through a clinical rotation, with the potential to provide the students and preceptors with student learning outcomes.” For more information on this project, please contact: ichung-thumb Ida Chung, OD, MSHE, FCOVD, FAAO, Assistant Dean of Learning, College of Optometry, at ichung@westernu.edu.   coats-thumb   Cherishea Coats, Educational Technology Support Specialist, at ccoats@westernu.edu.   macalino-thum   Jeff Macalino, Educational Applications Designer, at jmacalino@westernu.edu.   Related articles: