Columbia College students learn nursing 75 miles away

Columbia College-Lake of the Ozarks

Nov. 28, 2013

Video conferencing allows local students to attend nursing classes with lecturers at the main campus in Columbia.

By Spree Hilliard
Lake News Online

As the complexity of technology increases so does the way society uses it. Columbia College began utilizing technology in an unique way in recent years that has allowed students on the main campus and the Lake of the Ozark campus receive a comparable education.
Photo courtesy of Columbia College


"In-class lectures in the nursing program utilize interactive audio/visual conferencing. This lecture method allows nursing students to participate in classes at the same time as their nursing counterparts at other campuses. The primary instructor, a full-time nurse faculty member with expertise in the course content, telecasts the lecture," said Columbia College officials. "The receiving site has a full-time faculty member or clinical instructor monitoring and facilitating classroom activities, advising students, grading examinations and homework, and handling classroom situations or questions."

The Columbia College Nurses Network also known as CCNN began in August 2011.

"The program is doing very well. Licensure pass rates are well above the 95th percentile. Students are being placed in jobs and doing very well in their first employment opportunities," said Nursing Department Chair Linda Claycomb.

Columbia College faculty say that no matter if the students are in a classroom with a live professor or are watching the teacher via telecast that education is the same.

Even though there is always a learning curve when it comes to technology Claycomb says the students have adapted well so far.

"There is always a learning curve with new technology. Instructors need to learn how to adapt instruction to this methodology and students need to adapt their learning. Our students are great," Claycomb said. "Although some students may prefer a different method they recognize the importance of the faculty expertise in their learning. Students and instructors interact regularly and have excellent relationships."

Claycomb did not release any specifics on future plans for the program but did say that the nursing faculty is looking forward to offer further nursing degrees in the future.

The Lake of the Ozarks nursing program began in 2005 as part of a partnership with Lake Regional Hospital. Since the program started, more than 90 alumni have gone to work at Lake Regional. As of today, more than 220 nurses have graduated from the lake campus with a nursing degree.