University of Cincinnati Medical Center Distributive Learning Collaboratory for Health Professions

Overall Vision
Action Plan

Vision for the Future

In 2005 most of our "traditional" undergraduate students were born in 1987 and most of our medical or senior graduate students were born in 1982--all after the PC/digital revolution was well under way! For these people the use of technology for learning is the norm and not the exception. The use of technology to support all our life needs is so embedded in our world culture that it is difficult to imagine a non-digital world, especially for learning.

Distributed learning opportunities are the norm. In 2005 the UCMC Distributive Learning Collaboratory won a national recognition award for the quality content and production of its distributive learning services and products. The UCMC Distributive Learning Collaboratory for Health Professions web page is internationally known as one of the best sources of content for multidisciplinary education of health care professionals. The site is a clearinghouse for a wide range of self-contained modules that are easily searched and accessed. The modules, all using the same template design, can be used to "build" courses for any level of training. The modules can be "layered" to allow different levels of information depending on the needs and expertise of the trainee. Students accessing the site design their own training. The Collaboratory faculty are recognized as a "seal of excellence" for both the content and the quality of the educational design. The UCMC Distributive Learning web site has become a "portal" to distance learning in the health care area.

The UCMC, coordinated through the Distributive Learning Collaboratory for Health Professionals, offers a number of educational services and products to people world-wide. Some of the educational services include: bachelor, masters, and advanced degrees, certificate programs, continuing health care professional education programs, on-demand (non-degree/certificate based) and personalized tutoring services.

The Collaboratory is the repository for electronic educational content taught at any level at UCMC. The faculty use the instructional design expertise at the Collaboratory to convert their educational content into structured modules that optimize learning and contribute to the larger content resource base. Each module has the same "look and feel" of the Collaboratory and can be combined with other modules to construct an instructional package designed to meet the instructional objectives of the faculty. Multidisciplinary teams of faculty work together to drive the Collaboratory to take full advantage of new technologies while delivering quality content.

The faculty drive the content of the Collaboratory resources and constantly review and renew the content modules. The Collaboratory provides support in the areas of instructional design, hardware/software support, faculty education, research and development, and program evaluation. The educational products that the faculty produce and the extent of their use by others (as evidenced by web site hits and web searches of faculty members' names) are integrated into the Reappointment, Promotion, and Tenure guidelines of all academic departments at the medical center. Specific distributive learning goals are incorporated into the vision statements of each college at the medical center.

The Collaboratory's primary role is that of "enabler." This role is accomplished at several levels. For the faculty who are leaders in the use of IT the Collaboratory provides a laboratory and resources to allow faculty members to experiment with new tools or teaching strategies. Hardware/software and educational experts remain at the cutting edge of their respective areas and work with faculty to push the Distributive Learning envelope. For faculty who represent mid-level, or average, IT users the Collaboratory offers technical and educational support as well guidance and training in some of the leading edge developments in Distributive Learning. For new or low-level IT users the Collaboratory works aggressively to educate and support these faculty while urging them to increase their use of available technology and educational strategies. The Collaboratory maintains a very dynamic atmosphere as a result of ever-changing technology and its application to health professions education. The data collected as part of the research and evaluation functions provide feedback to the Collaboratory, the faculty, and used internationally as they are published in peer reviewed journals. The goal of the Collaboratory-as-enabler is to free faculty from the technical aspects of IT and Distributive Learning so that they can move forward with new instructional/educational ideas. The distributive learning concepts are so embedded in the University of Cincinnati Medical Center that they have become the norm. Many people teach their courses using distributive learning, but do not use the Collaboratory directly, however, they use the resources that the Collaboratory has accumulated.

In addition to the enabler role the Collaboratory is also the focal point for pedagogy at UCMC. Teaching and learning theory are critical components of the development of distributive learning materials. Instructional design experts as well as senior fellows at the Collaboratory help faculty integrate sound learning theory into all of their courses. The Collaboratory offers seminars on a variety of relevant topics to all faculty. In many ways the Collaboratory is "virtual" meaning that it collaborates with and uses of the services/resources of a multiple number of internal UCMC and UC organizations to the success of all the organizations.

The Collaboratory promotes collaboration across disciplines and colleges. The Collaboratory functions as a bridge to connect faculty who are working and teaching in similar areas in an effort to share resources and expertise. The Collaboratory works to promote a multidimensional view of education by drawing from the rich educational traditions of different disciplines and integrating them into new course designs and offerings.

Translated Into "Capable of' s"

Action Plan

Distributive Learning Collaboratory

Action Plan - Revised 6/8/00


Action Items


Due Date


Web Site

  • Fact sheet/picture
  • Templates; UC clipart
  • Links to learning resources
  • Plug-ins
  • On-line training links
  • On-line journal links
  • Faculty bio’s
  • Software updates
  • Listserv links
  • Microsoft update links
  • Connection to other UC Web sites

Bill Fant will update web page.

Bill, Jack, Lou Ann, and Kathleen will find and review content

Jack will e-mail Ralph to request an account for Bill.

Populate the site as much as possible for Dr. Harrison’s retreat presentation.

Style guidelines are needed for web sites.

Rules for use of logos

Talk with PR about templates

Leslie’s committee working on populating web site (6/21).

Vision Statement

  • Remove "Action Steps"
  • Add timeline

Jack will update document


Replace vision statement with Action Plan on Web Site.

Resource Committee

  • Short-term products (eg., Powerpoint)
  • Tools for using PowerPoint
  • Higher Level Skills and Reources

Leslie Schick chairs a group to develop these resources

End of Summer



  • New quotes for servers
  • New quotes for work stations
  • Novell Server Project
  • Budget approval and account set-up
  • PC-based solution to video conferencing

Bill and Ralph

Bill will experiment with PC-based video conferencing and report to the group.

Novell server project should be complete by September.

A-323 is being processed

Faculty Projects

  • Write-ups of faculty projects
  • Lieberman, Internal Medicine, Nursing Pharmacology Course, Molecular Pharmacology in COP, Digital Camera project

Sandy can update group on use of the digital camera.

Nursing lost a faculty member

Check with Sandy on Digital Camera Project


  • Search Engine Seeding
  • E-mail faculty
  • Present at faculty meetings, curriculum committees, grand rounds, etc.
  • Newsletter (on-line)
  • Connect to RPT guidelines
  • Seek out submissions

Ralph will look into Search Engine Seeding


  • University committee recommendations
  • Moving faculty/student information into courseware database
  • Get examination copy for review

Ralph will coordinate movement of faculty and student information

Jack e-mailed Fred regarding examination copies of Blackboard

June 1


June 5

Blackboard has been recommended as the university’s courseware application.

Rollout scheduled for Summer through Fall

Future Funding

  • Foundations
  • Commitment from Dr. Harrison
  • Fund small projects through research and training grants in cooperation with faculty
  • Kellogg Foundation


  • Faculty bio’s
  • Course catalog for East Campus colleges
  • Research resources (eg., genome, other data)
  • Feedback (wish list) from faculty/students
  • Virtual knowledge blocks
  • Depository (students/faculty)

Mary Heider and Joe Stoner are working with Ralph to make COM electives and Audit Project available on-line



  • External access
  • Need to decide what information is available to whom

Branding Committee will discuss and make recommendations

Video conference room

  • Coordinate technology choices
  • Follow-up with Laura Fidler

Meeting with Bill Fant, Ralph Brueggeman, Trish Trangenstein, Mark Faulkner, Tom Ridgeway

Jack e-mailed Laura Fidler regarding the room for video conferencing equipment.