- College of Medicine Faculty News
The UCF College of Medicine is establishing itself as a national leader in using educational technology to teach today’s learners, and in June, two faculty members shared their knowledge of digital education to peers across the North America.
Nadine Dexter, director of the Harriet F. Ginsburg Health Sciences Library, and Dr. Bethany Ballinger, associate professor at the College of Medicine, discussed the importance of interactive technology at the Association of American Medical Colleges Group on Information Resources (GIR) Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia June 5-7. The conference is attended by hundreds of other Information Technology professionals from medical schools across the U.S. and Canada.
Nadine discussed the library, which is 98 percent digital, and its use of interactive textbooks and handheld technology to address the needs of millennial learners who grew up using technology and learn by interacting with the material they study.
“There are so many opportunities and so many technologies out there, that we have to embrace some of them,” Nadine said “I want to share with them that they can be successful, don’t be afraid to try something new,”
Despite the availability of handheld devices, many institutions are still hesitant to embark on using the latest technology. As a new medical school with a library built from the ground up, UCF was able to adopt and adapt to new technology, Nadine said. For that reason, she often speaks to other medical schools who are looking to transition away from printed materials, that can be outdated the minute they go on the shelves, to electronic material that can be easily and quickly updated. The wide availability, timeliness and accuracy of online material is one of the reasons the library’s model is “Information anywhere, anytime, on any device.”
“There’s not a definitive line between where IT stops and Library begins,” Nadine said. “It’s all blended together, so everybody needs to be at the table.”
Her goal is to inspire her peers on how technology can improve the learning experience of students, by reaching them in an interactive way that is how they learn best. “Hopefully the take-away is that we are an innovative medical school that is not afraid to try new things.”