Student Gambia Visit

Sgl Frontpage ImgEight students from the second year of the Swansea medicine course are off to the Gambia on Monday to visit colleagues in the Royal Victoria Teaching Hospital in Banjul, and to experience medicine in West Africa.
Find out more about the Swansea-Gambia Link and follow the students’ blog and photos on the Swansea-Gambia Link website:

Teaching blog update

I still haven’t blogged my notes from my hip joint musculoskeletal anatomy session last week. Bad me. I’ve written part of it but haven’t finished it yet for a couple of reasons. The first is general busyness and prioritising, but the second is because of a shift in the way that I work.
I can see that the elearning I produce is very helpful to many of the medical students here in Swansea, and also to others worldwide. That’s great – I can produce something that gets used by a large number of people (and that number increases with time, unlike a normal lecture) so my time is well used. Efficiency increases with the increasing number of students helped given that it took a set period of time to produce the thing. The university is looking at elearning across the campus and my name keeps popping up in student feedback, so elearning is appreciated by students. On the flip side, elearning stuff takes a lot of time to produce in preparation, construction, testing and reviewing. As an anatomy lecturer on a medicine degree programme I already spend most of my time on teaching-related work, and producing elearning materials in addition to what is normally required means I’ve had little time for anything else. I think I need to change the way I work, and my production of elearning material will be the first thing to suffer.
I need to dedicate half of my time (or more) to lab-based scientific research. I have small piles of half-written manuscripts and grant applications lying around my office alongside unread printed papers about stem cell biology and synovial joint repair. These are fields that I’m very interested in but a part of my working life that I’ve let slide away over the last 4 and a half years. It’s time to refocus and to split my working time more evenly. This is great for me, but maybe not so great for medical students reading this. I’m not sure though, so we’ll see what happens.
Jo Bishop is now back fully encumbered with the human structure module, which helps me. Changes to the course in September 2009 will also help me. But in the first instance I need to be more strict with my self and my time, so I’ve less time for elearning.
But I will get those notes written up before Monday, when I’ll be talking about how anatomists classify different joints between bones.