Solutions Lab 11 – Teaching clinical skills and professional competencies online

Has the closure of the physical campus had an impact on the way you teach specialist skills and professional competencies? Have you lost physical access to labs, clinics and equipment or have the WIL/placement opportunities for students been restricted?

In this session, Karly-Rose McLaren (SHBS) explains how a great initiative to give students virtual access to specialist software has inspired her team to re-imagine the WIL elements of the course, opening up new and exciting opportunities for students, staff and industry partners.

The Radiation Therapy profession requires students to be proficient in computer-based treatment planning for oncology patients. This presented the Medical Radiations team with a huge challenge at the start of this semester because the specialist software is normally only accessible via a limited number (40) of computers on the Bundoora campus or in the hospital setting.

Working in collaboration with ITS, the team successfully developed a solution which allowed students to login remotely (via VPN) for their tutorial classes. They also utilised Microsoft 365 tools to set up a booking system which ensures that self-directed learning sessions are made available to students in a fair and consistent way. This has not only given students 24/7 access to essential learning resources, helping them to progress on the course, but has also eased the administrative burden on staff.

This new online approach has inspired the course team to create new virtual components of the WIL (work integrated learning) rotation for 2nd and 3rd year radiation therapy students. Working in collaboration with industry partners, they have been able to change the way hospital placements are planned, organised and assessed.

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