Development and impact of a MOOC for antimicrobial stewardship

Development and impact of a MOOC for antimicrobial stewardship

A short summary of the research paper ‘Development and impact of a MOOC for antimicrobial stewardship’ which appeared in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Written by Sally Bradley, E-Learning Manager, British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

The University of Dundee and the British Society of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC) developed a course called Antimicrobial Stewardship: Managing Antibiotic Resistance to address the global need for education to support antimicrobial stewardship in low and middle income countries.

This was the first course from the university and BSAC and it ran for the first time in September 2015. Having been successfully received, it will be starting its ninth run on 5 February 2018. To date, there have been over 40,000 enrolments on the course with participants from all healthcare professions across the globe.

The course was designed by the lead educator, Professor Dilip Nathwani, OBE and thirteen specialists in antimicrobial resistance and stewardship.  The course is six weeks long with each week exploring different aspects of stewardship.  A mixture of steps were used to ensure participants understood key elements within the course including quizzes and written assignments to ensure their understanding.

The participants were asked to complete a survey sent out to them on our behalf by FutureLearn to assess the impact of the course on their clinical practice.

  • At this time, a total, 32 944 people, 70% of them healthcare professionals, from 163 countries joined the course from Europe (49%), Asia (16%), Africa (13%), North America (9%), Australia (8%) and South America (5%).
  • Between 33% and 37% of joiners in each run completed at least one step in any week of the course and 219 participants responded to a post-course survey.
  • The course was rated good or excellent by 208 (95%) of the participants, and 83 (38%) intended to implement stewardship interventions in their own setting.
  • A follow-up survey 6 months later suggested that 49% had implemented such interventions.

The University of Dundee and BSAC are delighted with the uptake of the course which has now been translated and launched in Chinese with Spanish and Russian versions due to launch early in 2018.

Measuring the impact on clinical practice remains a challenge, however.

Read the full research paper written by Jacqueline Sneddon, Gavin Barlow, Sally Bradley, Adrian Brink, Sujith J Chandy, and Dilip Nathwani in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Research insights