Learn about eLearning with the NPA
28 Mar 2017
The NPA’s eLearning platform is a fast-developing, interactive and innovative way to carry out training. As the NPA’s eLearning content developers, our job is to convert the current NPA paper courses to an eLearning format, making them available online. This involves adhering to eLearning methodologies and principles and making the training interactive to ensure students are learning in the most efficient way possible. Many of our courses include quizzes, assessments and other engaging activities.
eLearning is preferable for many learners because they have the opportunity to log in and complete their courses online at their own pace, while being able to learn independently. Students are assigned a supervising pharmacist who acts as a mentor should the student need any guidance. The supervising pharmacist plays an important role in the student’s learning journey as they are responsible for reviewing and grading their student’s activity books, and can easily complete this task on the eLearning platform.
The NPA’s eLearning course for Pre-registration Pharmacists is a blend of face-to-face study days and eLearning resources. Throughout the year our Professional Development Pharmacists travel off-site to deliver face-to-face training on topics such as the central nervous and cardiovascular systems. We produce eLearning content to support these study days and our formative modules focus on interaction and engagement, often using visual activities like matching drag-and-drop. We use animation to connect with students- for example, a pumping heart to show the direction of blood flow and an interactive BMI calculator. Along the way, students answer questions based on case studies and complete informative, clinical and calculative tests which do not qualify for an official result but give users an indication of how they are progressing. There are many resources that plug into the course programme which includes webinars, and these can be viewed live by the student or downloaded as a presentation after it has aired.
The content we create is bespoke and we develop it in house at the NPA. We produce original graphics and images for each course, giving our platform a unique flair. These images can then be used by our pharmacists when creating study day training material, creating a cohesive theme. This attention to detail is one of the things that sets the NPA’s training platforms apart from other providers. Our expert team works closely with the NPA’s pharmacists to combine their clinical knowledge with engaging, educational methods. If students have any queries about courses or using the eLearning platform, they can speak directly with our pharmacist course leaders here at the NPA; there is always expert support at hand.
The NPA’s eLearning courses are very competitively priced compared to other players in the industry. eLearning is a cost-effective form of training that saves NPA members a considerable amount of money, and this is due to the fact that travel costs and time spent away from the pharmacy is minimised.
We are excited to be launching the Health Champion course online very soon. This course compromises four modules and is packed with interaction and animation. We could go as far as saying this will be our most dynamic course yet and will showcase the NPA’s eLearning platform at its finest.
Authors: Natasha Bothma and Melanie Lewis