Action research evaluation of the utilisation of ThingLinkTM  to provide immersive case based learning, and its value on the learners experiences

Hilton, Sarah Jae ORCID logo ORCID: , Howard, Lynn ORCID logo ORCID: , Morris, Karen ORCID logo ORCID: and Rhind, Susan ORCID logo ORCID: (2024) Action research evaluation of the utilisation of ThingLinkTM  to provide immersive case based learning, and its value on the learners experiences. Health Professions Education, 10 (12). pp. 123-121.

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Purpose: Evaluation of an immersive learning tool, ThingLinkTM, to facilitate case-based learning and its value on the learner’s interactivity, engagement, and enjoyment of the module, delivered via self-directed distance learning.

Method: Action research methodology was utilised over an academic year, within which the module utilising ThingLinkTM ran three times. An initial pilot project helped to formulate and revise the questions that were distributed via an online survey, gathering quantitative and qualitative data to identify themes within the areas of investigation. Participants consisted of qualified Paramedics within top-up BSc (Hons) and MSc programmes.

Results: 54 responses were received, providing a response rate of 26%. The exploration of data identified themes and sub themes which were explored in depth providing insight into tool accessibility, user experience, and the impact on learning. Overall, it was found that ThingLinkTM was easy to use and had a positive impact. Negative factors affecting use and engagement centered on guidance provided, accessibility, and internet connectivity. ThingLinkTM increased interactivity, engagement, and enjoyment of the case-based learning experience through the immersive, experiential elements. These allow autonomous gathering, interpretation and rationalisation of data that helps to inform and develop understanding of the patient situation.

Discussion: Findings supported the use of ThingLinkTM to provide case-based learning that engaged students and provided a positive learning experience. However, challenges and areas for development were identified which can inform further development and use of ThingLinkTM. The action research model allows for implementation of changes and further exploration of the impact of these changes within the use of immersive learning to provide engaging and enjoyable learning. The authors believe that this intervention aligns with innovative and creative teaching practices, providing case-based learning reflective of the learner’s work experience, making learning relatable, engaging, and enjoyable, which links to the potential for deeper learning and knowledge retainment.

Item Type: Article
Journal / Publication Title: Health Professions Education
Publisher: Association of Medical Education of the Eastern-Mediterranean Region (AMEE)
ISSN: 2452-3011
Departments: Institute of Health > Centre for Excellence in Paramedic Practice
Additional Information: This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC license (
Depositing User: Sarah Jae Hilton
Date Deposited: 20 Feb 2024 11:34
Last Modified: 27 Jun 2024 15:15


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