The practice of teaching online has a firm place in nursing education. No longer a novelty, online education can be found in most campus-based nursing education programs with web-supported resources, hybrid (mixed online and on-campus) classes, and fully online classes. Even entire degree programs are provided using online technologies.
When I took the job at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, I was expected to teach all graduate classes using online technologies. I know many other academic administrators that expect nurse educators to have the skills to teach online when they start their jobs. So, learning about distance education and online teaching is not for just a select few, it is an essential skill for all nurse educators.
A colleague of mine from another discipline recently started teaching online. He said incredulously, “You know, teaching online is hard…You have to manage the classroom and support students all the time.” Educators who have never taught online often have a misperception that once the content is developed, teaching online is effortless.
The knowledge, skills, and values for teaching online are specialized. Similar to many other specialized abilities, it takes time, practice, and dedication to become an effective online teacher. Rather than struggle with trial and error, educators new to online teaching benefit from hearing from experts in the pedagogy of online teaching.
Distance Education in Nursing (3rd edition) provides current information for nurse educators who want to begin teaching online or those who want to improve their online teaching strategies. Couched in the theoretical literature and evidence-based findings, Distance Education in Nursing guides nurse educators on topics including the transformation of nursing education, faculty preparation, student support, learning objects, clinical simulations, mobile apps, writing in online classes, and quality and accreditation of online programs.
I asked experts to contribute chapters to Distance Education in Nursing so that you, the readers, could hear the best evidence and learn creative approaches to online education. Chapters written by Pamela Jeffries, Marilyn Oermann, Diane Billings, and Jeanne Sewell give you a single source for expertise in online teaching. Interviews with nurse educators in the field provide a glimpse of challenges of and real-world solutions to online education. Collectively, Distance Education in Nursing is filled with pearls of wisdom from those who are leading the way in online education.
I hope you will read the book and find value in its contribution to the practice nursing education.