“We are all teachers and learners”

My sister applied for the nursing program, and one of the questions on her application was:  “What is something that everyone has in common?”

As I was blanking, she told me her answer:  “We are all teachers and learners, at some point in our lives.”

I was so impressed with her answer because I would not have thought of anything so insightful so quickly!

It really got me thinking how right she is.  Though I am a teacher now, I am learning so much, all the time.  I am learning how to play soccer.  I am learning how to be a mother (this is probably the hardest thing I’ll ever learn).  I am learning in the PIDP.  I am learning how to mentor students.  There are so many hats I wear, and while that can be overwhelming itself, it is also so rewarding to keep learning.  I think if I could be a professional learner of random knowledge, that would be my dream job 🙂

What’s amazing as well is when I can see students in the class excited about learning.  There is a lot of practical learning in Medical Radiography and students bounce around before lab and say how they are excited to be in lab.  Though this definitely weans as they approach midterms and finals, I know they are still happy to be a in program that they enjoy.

This site breaks down various roles that instructors can play:


Though broken down into 10 different roles, the first 9 are really just specific ways to teach (or mentor) peers or students.  The 10th role is that of a learner. As Harrison and Killion (2007) put it, “learners model continual improvement, demonstrate lifelong learning, and use what they learn to help all students achieve”.  How important to emulate this, and hopefully show our students that learning extends past the classroom.


Trends in IT and Adult Education from my classmate’s perspective

It was a pleasure having a Skype call with my PIDP 3100 classmate Mike Jaswal. He is in the field of IT for the RCMP. We started off by reflecting on how we were teaching the same as we were taught: lots of lecturing, little practice or application, no feedback. I have taken 3 other PIDP courses, and I mentioned how the PID program has been really eye opening for me, and I’ve gained skills and strategies that has made my classroom something I am proud of. (Though I still have so much more to learn.)

Trends in Mike’s Field
AI is a prevalent theme in the IT world. Mike gave two examples of AI that IT is currently interested in: microchips and cryptocurrency.

In Sweden, volunteers have had microchips implanted into their wrists.  Straight from a sci-fi movie, the microchips are used as ID readers and currency.  People can pay and ID for a bus ride or a coffee with a scan of their wrist.  Though microchips increase convenience, there are privacy issues related to this.  The microchips are more easily trackable than any credit card, and therefore are subject to information and privacy management issues.  Just like Facebook, Google Home, and grocery rewards cards, microchips track information from the user for targeted marketing by providing data to specific organizations. What are organizations doing with this information? Who is accessing it? The cost of convenience may be personal information and privacy.

Crytocurrency is also a trend that is of interest in Mike’s field of IT.  Crytocurrencies, like bitcoin, are digital currencies, not managed by the government and used by private corporations.  The banks and government want more control as currently it is usually used by parties that want to hide transactions.

The theme is that AI can aid people, but can also be invasive.  So invasive in fact, that situations sometimes beg the question: where does AI stop and the human begin?  Mike also emphasized that some AI is starting to take over lower level jobs, and we agreed that this drives adults towards higher education.  This is impactful for us as educators because it reinforces the idea that rote learning will not benefit students in the long run. We should embed outcomes which include higher order critical thinking skills.

Mike mentioned that the challenge in his classroom is to stay current with technology. The lifecycle of a tech product is about 9-12 months and some applications are updated monthly.  Since most people have their own tech product (eg. smart phone) it is important to incorporate that knowledge into the classroom.

Mike’s Trends in Adult Education

We also talked about what Mike was seeing in adult education.  He noticed that current education is repacking in a different format.  Meaning that the content is mostly the same, but an emphasis is placed on the context of learning.  Adult learners come with lots of experience which needs to be addressed, so they expect to be engaged in the learning process (pedagogy vs. andragogy).  With a lean towards the practice of andragogy, teachers must let learners apply their previous and new knowledge with relevant exercises.

Thanks Mike for a really interesting conversation!

Here’s a great video about the microchips in Sweden:

Trends in Adult Education

When researching trends in adult education, there were several themes that repeatedly came up.  One major theme, artificial intelligence (AI), provides education that is more realistic, accessible, and further reaching.

Halpin’s (2018) example of students visualizing a heartbeat through VR technology brings a realistic simulation that was not possible before.  In my colleague’s class, students virtually walk through an operating room. The benefits are obvious when students can virtually experience the workplace while in the safety of the classroom. Including digital technology into my classroom gives students the opportunity to gain computer science skills necessary for almost any workplace.

As technology becomes available on phones and in computer labs, costs decrease to make AI more accessible for every student (Viceland, 2017).

Furthermore, as students virtually experience different occupations, they start to see the possibility of making that dream come true.  (Student: I CAN be an astronaut!)

Vander Ark (2017) also notes how AI can be used to monitor student progress, provide feedback and manage dynamic classroom schedules .  As more and more programs use AI, I will only reap the benefits of this by delivering my class using an online learning platform, such as D2L or Moodle.  

This video published by Viceland, speaks to how textbooks are outdated as soon as they are printed.  We should instead be using technology available that is updated instantaneously.   “The transition from an analog teaching practice to a digital one and now a virtual one, really is going to change what teaching looks like”.


S Halpin. (2018, May 1). Trends in adult learning.  [web log comment]. Retrieved from https://news.nnlm.gov/ner/2018/05/01/trends-in-adult-learning/

Vander Ark, T. (2017, September 1).  10 current and emerging trends in adult learning. Retrieved from https://www.gettingsmart.com/2017/09/10-current-and-emerging-trends-in-adult-learning/

Viceland. (2017).  Beyond the Frame: The New Classroom.  . Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zGGVYT0cMHg

Trends in Medical Radiography

When I googled “Trends in Medical Radiography”, there was articles for days!  Medical Radiography, a field in which x-rays are used to take images to confirm pathologies, is built on technological advances.  Since the discovery of diagnostic x-rays in 1895 by Wilhelm Rontgen, technological advances have been exponential. Two trends that are headlining Medical Radiography are Artificial Intelligence and Global TeleRadiology.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

The fear that AI would take over human jobs is not coming true as originally thought.  What is being seen is that AI can augment the human radiologist’s work. Radiologists have interpersonal communication, quality assessment, and education, all traits lacking when AI works on its own.  Though AI can work faster on its own, diagnostic results are better when teamed with a radiologist using the AI for a second look. AI algorithms provide increased diagnostic accuracy, using molecular markers not perceptible to the human eye.  AI programs can take small amounts of data, usually a result of imaging parameters that reduces patient dose, and equate it to a sample size with large amounts of data. This therefore reduces a patient’s radiation dose and scan time without compromising the quality of the image.  Programs that can detect disease earlier than before results in early intervention and better prognosis. In augmenting the work of a radiologist, AI helps reduce radiologist burnout in a field where resources are decreasing. AI can not only enhance image interpretive skills, but certain applications can also improve department workflow, finance management and process improvement.  Currently, work is on creating ways to monitor the AI’s effectiveness and clinical value, as well as addressing any legal or ethical issues.

Academically, as AI is continually increasing, adapting and changing in usefulness, it will be difficult to keep our students current with the trends.  What we teach in class may be outdated by the time they reach their clinical practicums. The goal will be to encourage adaptability and versatility that reaches their whole career, since the evolution of AI won’t be stopping anytime soon.

Global Teleradiology

One far-reaching goal in Medical Imaging is to increase efficiency.  Not only is time often money, but more importantly time is often life. Third world countries or remote areas often don’t have radiologists on site to report an image.  Images have to be sent to trained radiologists elsewhere in the world. The time to transmit an image, without the loss of image quality is better than ever. Advances in information storage and conversion can sustain the quality of the images no matter how far or remote they need to be transmitted.  Every second counts when faster diagnosis and treatment can lead to a better prognosis.

In the classroom, students should have experience working with “cloud” information storage.  The work of a technologist to competently use this space is paramount to connecting images and patient information to radiologists.  Free cloud spaces like Google Drive can easily be incorporated into activities in the classroom, and encouraged to students for personal use.

Man doctor in futuristic medicine medical concept

Photo credit: https://www.trackactive.co/artificial-intelligence-and-health/


ECPI University. (n.d).  The biggest trends in Medical radiography. [web log comment]. Retrieved from https://www.ecpi.edu/blog/biggest-trends-medical-radiography-weve-seen-year

L Campbell. (2019, January 15). Top 3 diagnostic imaging trends for 2019. [web log comment].  Retrieved from https://www.carestream.com/blog/2019/01/15/top-3-diagnostic-imaging-trends-for-2019/

Palmer, W.J. (2019, January 8).  7 radiology trends that will define 2019. Retrieved from https://www.diagnosticimaging.com/di-executive/7-radiology-trends-will-define-2019

Palmer, W.J. (2018, October 4).   Artificial intelligence in radiology: Friend or foe? Retrieved from https://www.diagnosticimaging.com/di-executive/artificial-intelligence-radiology-friend-or-foe



As an introvert myself, I should have been looking into ways to incorporate the introverted learner as well as the extroverted learner in the classroom.  However, as my tag line for this blog says, I am a novice teacher and there is still so much for me to learn! Susan Cain’s TedTalk “The Power of Introverts” helps us understand what an introvert is and how they process the world.  She states that though society encourages extroversion, introversion is also a powerful approach to ideas and should be nurtured as well.

One of Susan’s ideas that I really liked to incorporate introverted personalities into group work was to allow people to brainstorm on their own first, and then after some time, bring their ideas forward to the rest of the group.  This allows introverts to feel comfortable in their own space, and stimulates extroverts when everyone comes together.

Some SETs to accomplish this include:

Facebook Groups for Educators

I was looking through facebook to see if there was a page for educators, and look what I found!



It’s a great resource for education courses and inspirational messages to get me through those tough days!  It’s always great knowing that there are others going through the same journey as me, and I can have support from so many different places.

“Artifacts” SET

I had the opportunity to view Bryan Webb’s digital project in PIDP 3250.  In the project, he talks about a Student Engagement Technique (SET) called “Artifacts”.  Because x-ray images are all digital and viewed on a screen now, it can be difficult to incorporate tactile activities for learners who thrive on doing and touching.  Serendipitously, I was given 2 boxes of x-ray films that were no longer in use at the hospital. I immediately wanted to use these somehow in the classroom.  Bryan’s project about the “Artifacts” strategy gave me some great ideas. They will be great for students to hold and handle to while learning about the history of x-ray.  Students will also be able to turn the films upside down and backwards when debating why one image is more optimal than another.  The opportunity for students to get their hands on x-ray films will be an experience unique to the classroom.