Moodle for Nursing Training – A Collective Effort

Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, nurses and in particular their important role in society and extraordinary achievements have received a great deal of attention. The considerable changes currently being made to nursing training, on the other hand, have gone nearly unnoticed. In early 2020, a new nursing occupation act consolidated the various traineeships for eldercare, nursing, and pediatric nursing into a single comprehensive vocational training model in nursing. In the project "DAPF 4.0 – Digitale Akademie Pflege 4.0" teachers and students are working together to develop a digital platform for blended learning in nursing education, combining both in-presence and digital formats. Professor Dr. Petra Lucht and Sandra Tausch from the Center for Interdisciplinary Women's and Gender Studies at TU Berlin explain how the digital academy is being developed as a prototype through citizen science.


What changes are currently being made to nursing training?

Sandra Tausch: Three primary changes are being made to nursing training right now. In early 2020, a new nursing occupation act replaced the previous eldercare and nursing act. Until now, separate vocational training was offered for eldercare, nursing, and pediatric nursing. These have now been consolidated into a single general nursing traineeship. The move to a single traineeship is intended to ensure new nursing professionals receive modern, up-to-date training and aims to combine theory with practical skills, offer a broader range of job prospects, improve the status of nursing occupations, and counteract a shortage of skilled workers. In short, to account for developments in society and the healthcare system. The various nursing occupations have been combined into a single qualification and title. This requires students to learn the skills to care for people of all age groups and in all areas of care: hospitals, inpatient care facilities, and outpatient care. This new training program must now be gradually implemented at nursing schools.

Widespread digitalization also means that digital media skills will be more strongly integrated into nursing training and teaching. The COVID-19 crisis has increased the pressure while also offering an opportunity to embrace and create digital teaching formats.

How will the Digitale Akademie 4.0 help square the circle?

Petra Lucht: In nursing training, there is not yet an established teaching platform, such as "Moodle" for schools and universities. We want to create the "Moodle for nursing education." The open platform will help instructors to create digital teaching and learning scenarios, as well as promote individualized learning and media skills.

In our research network with the FrauenComputerZentrumBerlin e.V., the Berlin School of Economics and Law, and the two nursing schools "Gesundheitscampus Potsdam der Gesundheitsakademie Potsdam gGmbH" and “Wannseeschulen für Gesundheitsberufe e.V. - Pflegeschulen," teachers and students form a community of practice. We record and address demographic, social, professional, and educational differences. We also provide trainers and trainees with a process-oriented understanding of how knowledge transfer works so that they can increasingly use the digital academy independently and we can slowly remove ourselves from the process.

Can you name a few examples of offers on the platform?

Sandra Tausch: Together with the "Gesundheitscampus Potsdam der Gesundheitsakademie Potsdam gGmbH” and the “Wannseeschulen für Gesundheitsberufe e.V. – Pflegeschulen” as well as the FrauenComputerZentrum, we are developing online tools for blended learning concepts. We then provide the results online as a kind of DIY kit. Our partners, the FrauenComputerZentrumBerlin e.V. and the Berlin School of Economics and Law, are conducting on-the-job coaching offers as well as trainings over the next three years. This helps nursing instructors to acquire skills for using digital technologies and tools. In order to secure the project results and disseminate them throughout Germany, the online platform "Digitale Akademie Pflege 4.0" will be developed during the project with current information about nursing training, a systematic overview of the digital skills needed in nursing training, pedagogical concepts and learning modules, as well as a self-study course, tutorials, good practice examples, and discussion forums.

Why are you integrating citizen science into the Digitale Akademie Pflege 4.0?

Petra Lucht: The Digitale Akademie Pflege 4.0 explicitly pursues a transdisciplinary approach, with all those impacted involved in research and design processes. Nursing training should be closely linked to praxis. We need to know what everyday working life looks like, what we can draw from that, and which skills are necessary and need to be taught in the training program.

Sandra Tausch: We really want the digital academy to actually be used. At the end of the project, we want to have a product that is really needed, not just what experts think is needed. This is why we are developing the online platform together with actual users, allowing us to integrate and consider user needs, desires, and identified problems. Otherwise we would be wasting a valuable resource. Their participation grants insight into what tools they actually use.

Petra Lucht: This means, a technology assessment is already conducted within the project. This requires more time during the development phase, however we benefit from users' immediate involvement. We plan to make the completed prototype available across Germany. We also hope, of course, that the digital nursing academy will have a positive impact on the Berlin-Brandenburg nursing landscape.


Interviewer: Christina Camier


Prof. Dr.

Petra Lucht

Chair Gender in MINT / Feminist Studies in Science, Technology and Society (Feminist STS)

Organization name Feminist Studies in Science, Technology and SocietySociety (Femnist STS)