Evaluation goal #1 Advance Knowledge in Oncology Care
All de Souza courses include an evaluation component which includes:
de Souza courses follow a standardized syllabus modeled after the University of Toronto academic program “Teaching in Higher Education2” which includes course description, course objectives, modes of learning, modes of evaluation, competencies, required reading and activities, expectations for participation, and course timeline3.
The study group has been offered once a year since 2008/2009 to prepare nurses for the CNA specialty certification exam in Oncology. Each year, more than 100 nurses participated in this program across the province of Ontario. The program started as a synchronous videoconference based group learning over three months in 2008/2009. In 2009/2010, the course became the first curriculum to use the de Souza eLearning system which allows 24/7 access for nurses.
A comprehensive evaluation was developed since the beginning and was guided by the adult learning theory, generational and cooperative learning process. The following evaluations were completed each year: pre-evaluation, midterm evaluation, symposium day evaluation and post study group evaluation.
The pre-evaluation gathered data on learner demographics and their knowledge and confidence level. The assessment of confidence was based on CANO Practice Standards and Competencies for the Specialized Oncology Nurse (CANO, 2006), and the CNA (2007) exam competencies.
The midterm evaluation focused on the progress and the effectiveness of the course, and on eLearning experiences at the de Souza eLearning system since 2009/10.
The symposium day includes problem based learning (PBL) activities and the mock exam. Participants used the day to ask questions on the challenging areas and to work through them with the PBL activities. The mock exam helps to familiarize them on the multiple choice format and to test their readiness for the exam. Participants stated that it solidified their knowledge and provided an opportunity to identify areas for further study prior to the exam.
A similar study group for hospice palliative care took place since 2008/2009 as well. In 2010/2011, de Souza expanded the study group to include pediatric oncology certification.
The oncology study group project was submitted to the 21th CANO conference, received the Hélène Hudson Memorial Lectureship Award, and the lecture note was published at the Canadian Oncology Nursing Journal in November 2010. In 2011, the team presented a comparison of different study group teaching methods between synchronous videoconference teaching and asynchronous eLearning, and examined its impact on learners and on faculty. The presentation was well received at the First International conference on Faculty Development in Toronto in May 2011.