Thursday, January 28, 2010

Week 3: The Sudden Explosion of E-books and E-bookreaders

Week 3: January 25, 2010:

This week, I read an article on an ebook initiative that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has for the state of California. In order to reduce a large deficit, the governor is working on launching an eBook project that moves from traditional math and science textbooks to eBooks. (Office of the Governor (2009, May 6). Gov. Schwarzenegger Launches First-in-Nation Initiative to Develop Free Digital Textbooks for High School Students. Press Release, Sacramento, California. Retrieved November 29, 2009, from

The Pros of the Proposal:

• An eBook is good forever; it doesn't need to be replaced, if damaged. Traditional books can get wet, torn, lost, etc.
• It saves the school money from reprinting the book every few years; many textbooks are reprinted with new editions for very minor edits. Publishers make thousands of dollars off of these new editions when very little, if any, content was modified.

The Cons of the Proposal:
• With all of the up-front costs for technology, servers, and training, savings will not be seen for a few years so it's more of a long-term savings than a short-term savings to address the deficit in California.

• How are they going to accomplish this in California? What about the kids that cannot afford even a school lunch... how will they obtain an e-reader?
This will be interesting to see how it plays out. Maybe this will set a precident for schools and ereaders. Here is a You Tube that speaks to this proposal:

On another note, a peer in my class shared the following research article about how undergraduates in Economics, Literatures, and Nursing students use e-books when they study.
Since I teach nursing, I have found that most of my students are fine with ebooks if the book is something that they will only use for a semester or two. However, if it is a large comprehensive Medical-Surgical text, the students seem to prefer the actual text.

I have also found that some of the courses really do not require text books but rather current relevant articles from professional magazines. Some aspects of medical treatments and particularly medications change so fast that texts can become outdated quickly and article are more accurate and current.

Many nursing programs also require students to have PDAs of some kind to download pharmacology texts, diagnostic references, and other resources to take to the clinical setting. It is less bulky to take a small PDA for referencing rather than a huge book bag full of textbooks.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

Week 2: January 18, 2010

Week 2: Digital Literarcy Skills

In the document: "Are they really ready for work?" by Cassner-Lotto and Wright (, I reflected it from a different viewpoint: "Are they really ready for college and nursing school?"
It seems that many of nursing students either directly out of high school or with a pre-existing associate degree in nursing (from a junior college such as Ivy Tech).... all seeking to obtain their BSN (bachelor of nursing) are just not prepared to write professional or communicate professionally.

A required course that all undergraduate nursing students take is a Professional Communication course in which many aspects of communication are covered. Sometimes the students think it is an English class at times. Of course it is not but some of the verbal and written (email / forum discussions) language is hideous and embarrassing. One assignment that has turned to be fun but has heightened the awareness of poor verbal communication is a Grammar Forum in which students are to observe others in their workplaces or classrooms during the week and she any type of 'bad grammar' via the forum. They do have great stories to share.

I also am concerned with issues about texting language. I also had a student in the fall send me multiple emails with texting slang and expected me to take her seriously. I tried to talk with her about how unacceptable this was especially when requesting something from her professor but she really never got it. Needless to say she was not as successful in the course as she could have been if she had just adjusted her language.

The library and searching for appropriate research / scholarly work is an issue for me too. Because there is so much out there on the web and of course one can google or 'bing' anything, educating college students about what is acceptable and appropriate sources for writing at a higher level.

I found a few great sites that I am using with my beginning nursing students about writing and appropriate sources:

Please feel free to explore these... maybe they can be helpful.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Week 1: January 11th

Welcome to my first blog. While I am doing this for an assignment in R685: The World is Open with Web Technology, my personal focus with be how all of this fits with nursing education. I am a Clinical Assistant Professor of Nursing for Indiana University School of Nursing. I am always seeking ways to improve the quality and delivery of nursing education.

The focus for the first week of the course is Neo Millennial and Web 2.0 Learners. One of the articles we read this week is called:
Oblinger, D. G. (2008). Growing up with Google: What it means to education. Becta: Emerging technologies for learning, 3, 10-29. Retrieved April 10, 2008, from

Cool Resources that I liked for the Week 1 include: Which is a trailer for a PBS documentary for Digital Nation and discusses how technology may bring people and families together. This is a new version of 'Did You Know 4.0'. I did share this one with my online students this week in a Professional Nursing Communication course.