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How do we evaluate the need to use apps as teaching interventions, and how do we incorporate apps into a teaching program?

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As nursing professional development (NPD) specialists, we are always looking for ways to disseminate knowledge. Many of us have turned to mobile device software applications (or apps) created for this new technology as a way to offer or facilitate education.

If you have determined that an app will be part of your teaching strategy, you need to decide how you are going to incorporate it. Here are some factors to consider:

  • You should identify the purpose of the app in relation to learning objectives.
  • If there is a cost related to using the app, who is going to assume the burden of payment? Have you incorporated this cost into your budget? Is the app a mandatory part of the learning experience or simply recommended? If only recommended, you need to ensure that all learners, even those who do not access the app, receive similar information. If they don’t have access to the app, how will learners achieve learning objectives?
  • How are you going to assess if learners have access to the app? Will this be a prerequisite to the class? How can you make information available to learners who do not have access to the app? You need to evaluate if access to an app is essential or just nice to have.

-Adrianne E. Avillion, D.Ed, RN