Here is the first article that I will be reading and posting. Please click the link to review the article and keep posted for comments/discussions.
Online CME has become a HUGE part of CME as well as general continuing education.
This article looks at the growth of online CME among physicians, but also looks at some of the downfalls that it may have. I think that online CME is can be categorized as a fairly ‘new’ addition to the world of CME. Although the internet is widely used today I think that online CME is just starting to take off. This article talk about the really phases that online CME is in as well as analyzes the different types of online CME that exists.
When I think about online CME, I cannot think of a better way to obtain additional education. For me the online component is what makes is so desirable. If I look at my life and what I do on a day to day basis, online CME sometimes would be the only choice that I had to obtain additional training or education. Working two jobs, volunteering in the community and having and extremely active social life doesn’t leave tons of room for school or education, but the option of online education makes this possible for many other individuals such as myself. I can review and research things on my own time at my own pace. Attending conferences or CME sessions may not always fit into the schedule of a busy physician, but online CME courses gives them the opportunity to still obtain additional education and training within a schedule that conforms to their lifestyle. I think that that is the ultimate benefit that online CME provides.
Although there seems to be many beneficial notes to online CME, I also concur that there can be a negative to this aspect of continuing education. Obtaining all of the training/information online takes away from the personal contact that one might obtain my attending a course or workshop. There may not be someone to answer a question that arises unless there is an online LIVE chat at the time. Yes, I am sure that most online CME allow for a Q & A or comment section, but how apt will physicians be to take the time to contact the provided of the course? I am would think less likely than they would to just raise their hand and ask a question in a live forum.
I tend to think that many people may not absorb the information as well in an online CME than they would in a conference type environment. This also goes back to the type of learner that one may be. Some visual, some auditory and some both; I would think that one would choose the type of learning environment that suits them best.
In summary I think this article touches on the value and growth of online CME. I agree with the many benefits that this type of CME has to offer, but often wonder if traditional CME will ever be able to be completely replaced. I tend to think that there will always be traditional CME available for those who prefer it and would tend to think that all forms of CME will continued to be used by physicians and other healthcare professionals.