“Sometimes the students do very well,” says Scotty Gonser, Instructional Support Specialist for the district’s Allied Health Department. “Sometimes the ‘patient’ dies. Either way, there’s usually an ‘ah-ha moment’ where each student says, ‘that’s what I should have done.'”
Debriefings and exercises are recorded on video so students can review the instructor’s advice and their own reactions during an exercise.
“It’s important to understand, however, that as interesting as the simulation exercises may be, it’s the debriefing where the real learning takes place,” Gosner says.
The support staff records all of the lectures students attend, whether they are present in person or attending via video.
“The Sonora cohorts receive pretty much all of their classroom instruction via teleconferencing,” Gonser says. “It saves them 113 miles of roundtrip travel, making it possible for many to attend who otherwise couldn’t. And of course all of the students have the benefit of reviewing the material recorded using the same system.”
Designing the facilities
According to Gonser, there were a number of people involved in the planning of Glacier Hall, from the architect, TBP Architecture, the technology consultant, Charles M. Salter Associates of San Francisco, and CompView Audio Visual, who supplied Cisco equipment and handled the engineering, installation and programming.
“Our use of Cisco systems is all about reliability and support,” Gonser says. “If one of my technicians calls with a problem he can’t solve, I can fix it from anywhere, whether I’m at my desk, online at Starbucks or attending a trade show.”
Instructors can operate the presentation systems from 3.5″ Extron TLP 350MV touchpanels mounted in the front of each classroom or lecture hall, while technicians handle the video conferencing and recording systems using 7″ TLP 700MV panels in the back.
“One thing that makes our SIM labs unusual is that the operator can follow the action as it unfolds, zooming in, say, as a nurse attempts to control a ‘patient’s’ bleeding,” Gonser says. “Whereas many schools’ labs deliver only a static video –if they have video recording at all–in Modesto and Sonora you can really see what’s going on.”