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A doctoral researcher community on Twitter: An actor-network explication of #PhDchat
Jeffrey M. Keefer, Visiting Nurse Service of New York / New York University
Late in 2010, a small group of postgraduate students discussed meeting on Twitter to discuss areas of interest to doctoral students. This developed into the hash tag #phdchat, which began informally with synchronous discussions on Wednesdays at 19.30 GMT, loosely focused around topics voted upon by anybody wishing to participate. The concept expanded to include people, primarily doctoral students, who discussed areas of shared interest such as motivations for doing a PhD or analysing data, along with various technologies of interest. From the time #phdchat Tweets began to be tracked to the time Twitter limited API use a few months later, there were 4,876 individual Tweets using the #phdchat tag. The 10 most active Tweeters using the tag during this period accounted for 52% of all the Tweets, even though there were 362 unique participants contributing at least once during this period.
Blended Simulation Based Medical Education: A Durable Network for Learning?
Armineh Shahoumian, Department of Educational Research, Lancaster University, Gale Parchoma, Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary, Jacky Hanson, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals National Health Service (NHS) Trust
Simulation based medical education (SBME) is gradually becoming an inseparable part of medical and Professionals Allied to Medicine (PAM) education. The demand to use this training approach in healthcare is increasing every year to meet the Department of Health’s Standards for Better Health (NESC, 2008). As an alternative training approach SBME provides medical students and practitioners with near real-life opportunities to practice and improve clinical and non-clinical skills and improve health care services as a result. Although SBME is already a very popular training approach, Kneebone (2005) argues it is “often accepted uncritically, with undue emphasis being placed on technological sophistication at the expense of theory-based design” (p.549). SBME is “a complex service intervention” (McGaghie, 2009, p.50), which includes much more than a series of advanced technologies utilised for simulating an event. SBME is actualised by a network of closely knit human, non-human, and “conceptual and symbolic” (Bleakley, 2012, p.464) actors that work in an interrelated manner “as a basis to promoting learning and innovation” (Bleakley, p.464). It is not just the sophistication of the technology that supports learning but the dialogic relation of all the actors involved in creating the opportunities for learning. What is required to develop a ‘healthy’ and ‘growing’ network that promotes learning and innovation (Bleakley, 2012) or hinder effective learning hasn’t widely been investigated. Bleakley argues that actor network theory (ANT) “serves to repair the historical separation of theory and practice” (p. 465). To understand SBME as a complex process involving technology, people, objects, artefacts, actions, and places, ANT may introduce new insight, “an interruption or intervention, a way to sense and draw nearer” (Fenwick & Edwards 2010: ix) to the phenomenon of SBME. This paper expands the understanding of how actors interact with each other within a network and the practices that support/hinder blended learning in the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (LTHTR) Simulation Centre (SC). Outcomes provide insight into the design of a simulation session, describe the assemblage of a blended learning in SBME (B-SBME) actor network, and illustrate an example of the network effects of mediators’ and intermediaries’ capacities to form alliances between a B-SBME networked assemblage and broader Trust networks.
The uncodings of ANT: Mobilities of digital data
Terrie Lynn Thompson, School of Education, University of Stirling
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