Developing Digital Stories to Accommodate Multiple Learning Styles in a Healthcare Environment
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Subjectstorytelling; digital storytelling; digital stories; digital storytelling process; healthcare; multiple intelligences; nursing staff retention; nursing staff retention; patient care and safety; cognitive learning theory; learning styles; nursing; educational tools
This project looks at why digital storytelling may be an appropriate learning tool for hospital nurses and if so, how to best develop digital stories to support caregivers’ multiple intelligences. For this project, I developed two digital stories – one from a patient perspective and one from a caregiver perspective. It is through these stories and feedback from nursing staff at a nonprofit hospital in Upstate New York that I was able to learn if the stories I created positively impacted nursing staff by educating them on important topics in patient care and safety. I also use cognitive learning theory to determine where the strengths and weaknesses of digital storytelling lie. This study tested the assertion, supported by related literature, that digital stories are excellent learning tools because they accommodate people’s different learning styles, and this may affect teaching techniques. In healthcare, a world where evidence-based practices are critical, digital stories are being promoted and used to teach nurses valuable lessons that can’t be taught by statistics or research findings (Haigh & Hardy, 2011). Through this study, I was able to recommend to the hospital that they should in fact use digital storytelling as an educational tool. I recommended that they do this using the following methods: hold a digital storytelling contest with nursing staff, use digital stories produced by hospital staff during new employee orientation, use digital stories as educational tools during hospital in-services and education days, gather before and after stories from nursing staff to see if behaviors changed based on the digital story they watched, investigate the benefits and opportunities for reflection and transformational learning provided by the digital storytelling process, and use digital stories as educational tools on certain nursing units while providing other nursing units with written stories to see if digital stories changed behaviors more than written stories.