Course information

Evidence-Based Midwifery Practice MOOC

This is an international Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) for midwives for continuing professional development (CPD) focusing on Evidence-Based Midwifery Practice. The MOOC is different from traditional online or e-learning courses by being massive and open. Massive means that there is no limitations for the number of participants in the course and that makes it possible for as many midwives as possible from all over the globe to participate in the course. Open means that the course is open access and free CPD for midwives. The MOOC has no sponsorship or other money involved and this means that the content used in the course such as articles, videos etc. will be free and open access resources.

The MOOC will run from 13th April to 24th May 2015 as a six-week course with a workload on 4-6 hours per course module which is the amount of time that you need to be able to read, watch, engage and participate in the learning activies planned in the course. Participants can engage in the MOOC whenever it is convenient for them and can learn at their own pace. We encourage you to engage in the discussions with midwives from all over the world and share your experiences and knowledge to learn together with and from each other. The course modules with the associated content and learning activities will be accessible from the 13th April.

The live presentations from very experienced midwifery researchers will be on fixed dates and times related to the time zones of the speakers. This will be an extraordinary chance to listen to and interact with renowned midwifery researchers. The live presentations will be in an online conferencing system called Adobe Connect and the participants need to register to be able to participate. The live presentations will be recorded and links to the recordings will be made freely accessible after each live presentations.

The MOOC is targeted and designed for midwives and educators in in clinical practice but anyone is welcome to sign up for the course including consumers and students. The MOOC will be in English without translation to other languages so participants need to be able to understand, speak and write English.

At the conclusion of this MOOC the participants will be able:

  • to search for evidence based research for midwifery practice
  • to read and analyse selected results at a basic level in research articles
  • to critique research and to understand the politics behind research
  • to understand evidence based research results in a global context of midwifery
  • to translate and implement research into clinical practice

Module 1: The opening module focuses on orientation in the course and on understanding the role of evidence in the evolution of maternity care. Participants can interact with midwives as peer learners from all over the World in the discussion forum and engage in the learning activities.

Module 2:  This module is about sourcing and accessing the best available evidence, focusing on identifying the most appropriate sources of evidence for clinical practice. In this module we will learn about Hierarchies of Evidence and the identification of the best study designs to inform various clinical questions. Participants will be supported to construct an effective database search strategy to identify the best evidence available to inform clinical questions and to consider the role of clinical guidelines in promoting best practice.

Module 3: Systematic reviews and meta-analysis (such as those conducted in the Cochrane Collaboration) represent the highest level of evidence for questions relating to the clinical effectiveness of various treatments or therapies. This module will focus on understanding the processes involved in a systematic review and meta-analysis and how to interpret the evidence. The participants will learn to interpret (and calculate) an Odds Ratio and a Relative Risk, understand the meaning of a p value and confidence interval and interpret a forest plot.

Module 4: Critical appraisal of evidence is important and in this module the focus is on understanding the importance of and being able to identify key elements in critical appraisal. Participants will learn to identify and utilise tools that facilitate critical appraisal of research studies.

Module 5: This module will focus on the implementation of evidence in midwifery practice focusing on how to integrate evidence-based research in practice and to challenge the status quo. Participants will learn to describe the ways that evidence utilisation can shape maternity services and understand the issues impacting on the utilisation of evidence in practice. Potential strategies will be identified to overcoming barriers to using evidence in practice.

Module 6: In this last module participants will draw on the learning achieved throughout the course and bring a new appreciation for evidence based midwifery practice to bear on issues relating to the evidence base of midwifery at the global level.

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