SF State News {University Communications}

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News Release


SF State School of Nursing opens new technology classrooms

High tech learning environment is expected to expand the range of experiential learning


SAN FRANCISCO, September 16, 2008 -- The San Francisco State University School of Nursing has expanded its facilities to include classrooms with high-tech enhancements including high-fidelity patient simulators. The new Technology Learning Classrooms (TLC) will allow faculty and students to address, practice and observe a full spectrum of clinical scenarios with a variety of levels of simulation.

High fidelity simulators are computerized mannequins that can be programmed to present a variety of health problems. They give nursing students the opportunity to practice responding to crises that do not often occur in traditional clinical health care settings.

Prior to simulators, nursing students relied on events that happened in such settings as clinics and hospitals with real patients. Instructors couldn't plan to train a group of students on how to respond to a heart attack because they had to wait for one to happen. The new facilities will allow nursing faculty to not only plan a scenario involving a patient having a heart attack, but plan it around a class in which each student's response can be filmed, critiqued in the classroom and practiced to perfection.

"Technology makes this an exciting time to be engaged in nursing," said Shirley Girouard, Director of the SF State School of Nursing. "Today the stakes for patients are very high and the role of nurses in safety and quality of care is critical. We have ethical and social obligations to prepare future nurses and graduate level nurses to work in an increasingly complex and technology-rich healthcare environment."

The patient simulator technology, which has existed for about 10 years, continues to advance in sophistication. Girouard said the School of Nursing is pursuing more funding to keep up with advancements in the technology, access more equipment and make further improvements to the classrooms. "The newest generation of nursing students are tech savvy," Girouard said. "They expect a high-tech approach to their education."

The public is invited to visit the Technology Learning Classrooms, meet the students and faculty and observe them working with the simulators on Oct. 1 at SF State. The tour at 3 p.m. in Burk Hall on the campus will be preceded by a 1:30 p.m. talk on the future of nursing education led by Ruth Ann Terry, an executive officer of the Board of Registered Nursing, in the Seven Hills Conference Center on campus. For more information visit www.nursing.sfsu.edu or call (415) 338-0926.

San Francisco State University is the only master’s-level public university serving the counties of San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin. The University enrolls more than 30,000 students each year. With nationally acclaimed programs in a range of fields -- from creative writing, cinema and biology to history, broadcast and electronic communication arts, theatre arts and ethnic studies -- the University's more than 140,000 graduates have contributed to the economic, cultural and civic fabric of San Francisco and the greater Bay Area.

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