E. Navarro-Illana1, K. Whittingham2, M. Narayanasamy2, K. Hjorthaug Urstad3

1Universidad Católica de Valencia (SPAIN)
2University of Nottingham (UNITED KINGDOM)
3University of Stavanger (NORWAY)
Clinical skills is a fundamental area of learning for nursing students internationally and tends to be resource, time and staff intensive. There is evidence of significant issues with clinical skills learning and application internationally. To address this, 3 Universities, University of Stavanger, Universidad Católica de Valencia and University of Nottingham have collaborated on 2 EU-funded projects to determine the extent and mechanisms through which materials in this area could be jointly developed and shared.

This paper reflects on the scoping of joint resource development in the complex area of clinical skills. The paper presents challenges when reusing materials from one partner to another are presented and possible mechanisms by which these can be addressed to maximise benefits of internationalisation of higher education to assure consistent, high quality standards.

The first project known as DIMEANE (Development and Implementation of Interactive Mobile e-learning apps for European Nursing Education), focused on reuse of materials, known as e-compendiums that had been developed for use on a fully online nursing programme in Norway. Many of these had a focus on clinical skills underpinning nursing practice. The e-compendiums were developed by the e-learning department at the University of Stavanger and disseminated to teams in Spain and the UK for translation and repurposing for their respective nursing students. Following on from this, the second and current project known as DIGISIM, seeks to take this further by identifying and sharing a range of materials from all 3 partners. This project is fully focused on the area of clinical skills.

Reflections on nurse lecturers’ experiences of the scoping and translation process were gathered during international networking events. Reflections focused on: what was learnt during the scoping translating process; were some of e compendiums more difficult to amend than others (e.g. biology vs. nursing compendiums); what would be recommended for further collaborations developing international e-learning resources?

Whilst there were considerable similarities in the requirement for clinical skills learning between the different countries, there were also significant differences. The scoping of content development acted as a platform to critically appraise these differences and the rationale behind them. Sometimes they reflected the set requirements of the regulatory regimes in the partner countries, but other times they simply represented differences in language, terminology, culture and context of practice that could be resolved through discussion and finding commonality. It became apparent that for several of the resources it was necessary to make extensive amendments, as the argument was not for homogeneity but for transferability. Following the amendments there was concern regarding clarity of the ownership/authorship of the resources. In some situations, this led to reticence of faculty lectures to use the resources due to concerns about credibility, quality and consistency.

Future projects should consider allocating the production of specific materials to each partner organisation, ensure a clear trail of provenance and consider the transferability of the resource from the outset. Often, smaller portions of the overall materials were reusable and therefore keeping each resource small and granular supports the reuse.