AO NA’s Online Learning Story: A Commitment to Education and Quality
19 October 2020
23,000 active learners, over 1200 hours of instruction, 55,000 views on YouTube, and participants from 80 countries! These numbers speak volumes about AO NA’s commitment to education. These numbers tell the story of the extensive number of hours surgeon volunteers have contributed working with AO NA staff to make all this a reality.
We pivoted just like all other organizations in response to COVID and the continued need for training residents and fellows and provide updated evidence and information to the surgeon community. April 8th launched the first online live synchronous learning session, and the AO CMF NA surgeons did an excellent job moderating discussion while delivering pragmatic solutions to challenges in practice.
Live sessions developed and delivered by all other clinical divisions followed quickly behind. Surgeons were committed to making these learning experiences true differentiators, brainstorming innovative approaches to teaching and using technology to promote engagement and active learning. ZoomTM has served as an effective platform and, after seven months, continues to meet the needs of both faculty and learners.
AO NA has now established an online footprint that we hope will continue to grow. In September we launched Totara, our new learning management system which has enabled us to deliver our pilot blended learning programs.
For the staff, pivoting to online education came rapidly. They only had two weeks to assess what we had, plan, and prepare for the launch in April. All processes related to learner registration, participation, accreditation and claiming of credits, marketing, and program planning had to be evaluated and modified to support online learning processes. The staff was able to adapt and successfully support the faculty. We learned every step of the way and hope to continue to evolve and grow to further increase the scope of our online activities.
There is more to come in 2021. We are planning a regional approach to blended courses, online curricula, online case consultations, as well as VR modules and high-fidelity simulators. Stay tuned!
We could not have achieved any of this without the commitment and support of all our faculty. We are extending a heartfelt thank you from all of AO NA and especially the Education Team!