About the MOOC

About the MOOC

Nursing students in 1895

Nursing students in 1895

Nursing is the largest occupational group in the health sector and the need for nurses will increase over the next decades. As part of the implementation of the Coordination Reform (Parliamentary White Paper No. 47), there is a great need to enhance the competence of nurses in a variety of areas. In present-day health care, professional practice takes place in close coordination across both professions and levels in the health services. In this complex context and with the aim of understanding the challenges involved in today’s health care services, knowledge of the discipline of nursing and developments and changes in the profession are of particular importance. The knowledge of the discipline has developed historically over time and has a 150 year old tradition in Norway. Knowledge of nursing traditions and history reveals that nursing has played an important role in population growth, state power and the welfare of the people. The profession has offered a safety net in times of crisis, but has perhaps not always appeared with equal clarity and significance. There have been many myths about nurses and their discipline and professional practice. Knowledge of international, national, regional and local nursing history will be vital for an understanding of new health challenges in Norway and internationally.

The aim of the project “Nursing goes aMOOC” is to share knowledge and exchange nursing experiences across borders. In addition, the course aims to demonstrate that knowledge of developments and change in the discipline constitutes an important knowledge base in nursing today.

UiT The Arctic University of Norway has unique expertise in the field of nursing history and traditions, both in a Norwegian and Scandinavian context. The research group Patient-centred Nursing Research in the Department of Health and Care at UiT has nursing traditions and history as one of its priority areas with three staff members actively engaged in research into nursing history. They participate actively in a broad-based international network with representatives from several European and American research groups. One staff member is also on the board of the European Association for the History of Nursing, which works to promote the significance of traditions and history as an important knowledge base in the discipline of nursing. A future MOOC project will be a valuable contribution to enhancing and further developing nursing expertise both nationally and internationally. The board of EAHN has agreed to help with the design of the academic content of the course.

The Faculty of Health Sciences has a strong culture of innovative projects to develop academic and pedagogical courses, and “Nursing goes aMOOC” therefore falls within the Faculty’s priority area. The strategic plan “Health Faculty 2020: The future is what we make it!” emphasises that the Faculty aims at dynamic study programmes that meet the principles of the Coordination Reform and the future needs of health care in the region. In this way, the Faculty will develop and enhance flexible study options with a focus on high-quality pedagogy and relevance to tomorrow’s health services. The Faculty will also facilitate innovative teaching methods and novel pedagogical ideas. The Faculty will encourage further development of formal arenas for the mutual exchange of experiences in pedagogy and teaching methodology internally at the University and with external partners (Strategic Plan for the Faculty of Health Sciences 2014-2020).

To reach the target group, the course will be developed as a flexible study option, using technology in new and flexible ways. The development work will take place in close collaboration with HelPed – the Section for the Pedagogical Development of Health Disciplines. This section forms part of the Faculty of Health Sciences, and its aim is to promote pedagogical development. One primary objective is to ensure that online learning and digital media are used where appropriate. The Section also supports university staff in educational development work by providing guidance and help in participating in networks in educational research and development work.

The project team will also be in continual dialogue with the Communications Department of the Faculty of Health Sciences. This department will draw up communications plans in order to reach other national and international educational institutions and will promote the project in relevant media.

The course will be a credit subject at Master’s level. Students will be able to complete the course irrespective of language, time and place. The course will be offered in English.

The project aims to develop new high-quality learning resources adapted to a digital learning arena to enable students to participate independently of time and place. The development of “Nursing goes aMOOC” will provide more effective adapted education which will also reach an international market in a field where the Department of Health and Care Sciences at UiT The Arctic University of Norway has unique expertise.