The expectations and experiences of blended learning approaches to patient safety education

Ann B. Wakefield, Caroline Carlisle, Andrew G. Hall, Moira J. Attree

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    E-learning facilitates access to educational programmes via electronic asynchronous or real time communication without the constraints of time or place. However, not all skills can be acquired via e-learning, thus blended approaches have emerged, where traditional academic processes have been combined with e-learning systems. This paper presents qualitative findings from a study evaluating a blended approach to patient safety education. The 3-day face-to-face training in Root Cause Analysis supported by e-learning resources was designed by the National Patient Safety Agency. The study evaluated the efficacy of the blended learning approach, and explored how operational practices in NHS organisations supported staffs' skill in using electronic resources. Data collection techniques included pre and post-course Confidence Logs, Individual Interviews, Focus Groups and Evaluation Questionnaires. Students' views on blended learning varied. Some were positive, while others felt e-learning did not suit their preferred learning style, or the subject matter. Many students did not engage with the e-learning resources. Lack of awareness regarding the e-learning component, combined with inconsistent access to computing facilities may have contributed to this. For this reason a series of recommendations are outlined to guide those wishing to adopt blended learning approaches in the future. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)54-61
    Number of pages7
    JournalNurse Education in Practice
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008


    • Blended learning
    • E-learning
    • Patient safety


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