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Salem State University Adopts PrepU for Nursing Program

Students at Salem State University's (SSU) School of Nursing will have a new way to gauge their comprehension of course materials comes this fall. Instructors for the nursing program have decided to adopt Lippincott Williams & Wilkins' (LWW) PrepU following a successful pilot program with students in the school's Nursing Fundamentals course.

PrepU, an adaptive learning platform, aims to improve student comprehension through the use of customized online quizzes. Each quiz automatically adjusts its questions to suit the student's learning levels, according to previous responses. At the end of each quiz, students receive direction on relevant textbook material that they can use for further review.

Paula Burnett, assistant professor at the nursing school, coordinates the undergraduate program for the 700 nursing students at the university. Burnett credits the online quizzing tool for boosting test scores and helping students navigate their way through the challenging curriculum.

"Last semester, students who answered more questions scored higher on the course final exam than classmates who used the tool less," said Burnett in a prepared statement. To encourage students to use the tool, Burnett includes questions from the quizzes on her exams. She plans to continue using the quizzing tool in the coming year. "Next semester, I plan to use PrepU for pre-class quizzes, so I can understand student comprehension and adjust my classroom teaching."

SSU first implemented PrepU in the fall of 2011, with 80 students in its Nursing Fundamentals course. The school extended the pilot to the following spring, with an additional 100 students. The university will continue using PrepU this fall in the Nursing Fundamentals course but will also incorporate the quizzing software into its Health Assessment and Adult Health classes. The university has also adopted LWW's textbooks to "ensure consistency with PrepU," as well as DocuCare HER, the company's simulated electronic health record teaching tool.

About the Author

Kanoe Namahoe is online editor for 1105 Media's Education Group. She can be reached at knamahoe@1105media.com.

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