Sunday, 7 January 2007

User Education

We have been looking into getting our staffs' computer skills up to a more appropriate level and have decided to implement an eduction plan. The plan is to execute testing to evaluate the skill levels of the relevant users and to then assist them in becoming more computer literate until all users are at a certain base level when we finally implement a full PACS system. I have done some looking on the internet for training material and found that there is not too much out there that you can get for free. My search did however bring me to a training system called moodle.

Moodle is an open source training system that allows educators to create their own online curriculum, online test, assignments and much more. The system runs on open source technologies. You will need a web server (IIS or Apache), MySQL Database and PHP. These products are freely available on the internet or you could get WAMP which is a package with Apache, MySQL and PHP.

Moodle is relatively simple to setup, please just note that you need a newer version of PHP and MySQL. (BE CAREFUL when upgrading your web server, I managed to mess up my Mambo installation and had to do some fixing, but it is all good now.)

Please note that moodle is just a system for training, it does not include any training material. The setup of the moodle server will be relatively quick compared to the actual content population of the system.

Moodle does however offer some advanced features that could be useful in a large Radiology practice looking at implementing a PACS system.

Key Benefits to Radiology Practice:
  • Online Content, tests, reports, etc.
  • Accessible from any computer on the network
  • Accessible at any time of day
  • Easy setup of tests
  • Instant online statistics
  • Get users used to using computers
  • Update content from central location (No more old notes floating around, etc.)
To conclude I will keep you all posted on the progress of our moodle installation, it is still in its infancy and is nowhere near implementation yet. I do however feel that there are some amazing benefits to this system that far out weigh traditional classroom type of user education.