NUI Galway Offers Nurses and Midwives New Access to Education

Thursday, 1 May 2008

A new initiative by NUI Galway to provide greater access to continuing education for nurses and midwives has been welcomed by HSE West and the Nursing Midwifery Planning and Development Unit (NMPDU). Postgraduate Diploma courses will be offered to nurses and midwives, for the first time in Ireland, through a combination of online and classroom-based teaching. The University's aim is to accommodate the hectic schedules and work demands of nurses and midwives by allowing them to complete course modules at their individual pace. The Postgraduate Diplomas offered by the School of Nursing and Midwifery at NUI Galway through 'blended learning' include Accident and Emergency, Intensive Care, Oncology, Palliative Care and Orthopaedics. Nora Irwin Area Director NMPDU, HSE West praised the new approach to teaching saying, "This new initiative really supports and facilitates nurses/midwives to access continuing education during this period where release and replacement of staff is difficult." Blended learning refers to a learning experience that combines classroom and online forms of learning (mixing traditional and distance learning). Nurses and midwives will have online access to course details and content at all times and participate through lectures and tutorials, discussion board, online collaboration, e-mail and telephone. According to Mary Francis O'Reilly Director of the National Midwifery Planning and Development Unit, "This is a new departure within the field of nursing and we are delighted that the School of Nursing and Midwifery at NUI Galway is leading the way nationally with this initiative. Nurses and midwives are very busy practitioners and it can be difficult for managers to release staff to attend courses, therefore the introduction of 'blended learning' means that students will now be able to log onto the internet and undertake some modules from the comfort of their own homes. Students will also be able to take stand alone modules and accumulate credits over time". For further details of course available through blended learning contact Dr. Philip Larkin School of Nursing and Midwifery, NUI Galway on 091 492013 or visit the University's Postgraduate Admissions Office website www.go4th.ie
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