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Wanna Play

John Golden

System Office

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   Instructional Innovation is a Priority at
   Lone Star!

Innovation is in!

Economists tout innovation as the single most important factor to remaining competitive in a global economy and the signs are everywhere: Department of Education grants of $650M to foster innovation, the White House's push for a "green economy," and every day inventions like the "Korean Taco" all speak to a world of creativity and inventiveness.

The Office of Technology Services established a "Chancellor's Faculty Technology Innovation Grant" (CFTIG) in 2009 to support pioneering faculty in the development, deployment or implementation of new and emerging technologies into teaching and learning to increase student success. Last year's winners will present to Executive Council during the upcoming EC retreat. Here are highlights of the inaugural faculty winners:

High Fidelity Simulation: Pathway to Success, Access & Effectiveness

Marguerite Tamasy PhD, RN, ACNS, BC (LSC-North Harris) Marinela Castaño MSN, RN (LSC-North Harris)

Simulation, the art and science of recreating a clinical scenario in an artificial setting, has been an integral part of health science curriculums for decades. But "high-fidelity" simulation – the use of a computerized, interactive manikin that can be programmed to provide realistic patient responses and outcomes – is altogether changing the learning landscape because of its increased level of sophistication and realism. While Lone Star's nursing programs have used life-sized adult high-fidelity manikins for years, this CFTIG grant brought SIM baby to LSC-North Harris. Able to cry, breathe and produce a heartbeat, this baby allows students to perform assessments and make decisions in a controlled environment. As one student said, "Simulations are real eye openers. It helps us to be better prepared for clinical. It is especially helpful to those of us who do not have children. As students, we are more hesitant to work with babies and children."

Thin Client Virtualization of Desktops

Kim Hubbard, professor Computer Information Technology (LSC-CyFair)
Margaretha Johnson, professor Computer Information Technology (LSC-Kingwood)

The term "thin client," coined in 1993 by Tim Negris of Oracle, has been defined by HP as…"computing devices that function as an access device on a network" and which "connect over a network to a server where the bulk of the processing takes place. The user has no hard drive and applications run from the server, not the desktop, for greater security and efficiency. This CFTIG grant brought thin client computing to two campuses, LSC-CyFair and LSC-Kingwood, and positions Lone Star to expand system-wide once the pilot results are in. As CIT professors Hubbard and Johnson recently explained, "Thin client virtualization also provides a seamless fit into Lone Star's Green profile by tremendously lowering energy costs at the desktop level." It also allows faculty and students to stay current with IT trends and more quickly explore new and emerging technologies. This technology is being considered for computer labs and classrooms, not for individual users.


Innovative use of Technology at the bedside to improve nursing OUtcomes through the use of handheld technology in Clinical and Hospital settings

Licia Clowtis, professor Associate Degree Nursing (LSC-Montgomery)
Gordon Carruth, professor Computer Information Technology (LSC-Montgomery)

What do Yale, the University of Tennessee, UVA, UT-Austin, Washington State University and LSC-Montgomery have in common? They all use personal digital assistants (PDAs) as reference tools for students. This CFTIG grant uses video technology to capture students performing skills correctly in a lab setting and placing the videos on the students' personal iTOUCH for viewing at the bedside with patients during their clinical work. The PDAs also give students immediate access to information on drug-drug interactions, medical complications and other important health-based applications. While the pilot isn't final yet, professors Clowtis and Carruth are already seeing positive results. One significant and unexpected benefit learned through this initiative is that it provides instructors with the opportunity to socialize students in the utilization of technology. It's critical our nursing students know how to use technology while maintaining good bedside manners and practices. Once completed, this successful project has the potential to scale to other nursing programs within LSCS, as well as other health-based programs.

Interested in applying for a CFTIG grant? $250,000 is available for 2010-2011 and all full-time and adjunct are eligible to apply. Submissions are due on or before January 14, 2011 and no late submissions will be considered. More information and the application can be accessed via: