LSHTM’s new free online Eye Health courses

Open Education in Eye Health (OEEH) was established in response to the growing global need to embed a public health approach to effectively address avoidable blindness and the health training inequalities which exist. Training programmes in eye health, particularly in low and middle income countries (LMIC), are constrained by limited faculty and resources. In addition, public health for eye care is essential for practice within health systems but often is not covered within clinical ophthalmic training curriculums. The pace of change in medical knowledge requires the development of professional life-long learning approaches and resources.

OEEH contributes to addressing this glaring global gap using digital technology and collaborations with global networks of eye health educators, alumni and experts. Our aim is to transform access, quality and cost of education by providing free and flexible access to high quality public health for eye care training opportunities at scale and at the point of need.

So far, 5 courses in key subject areas have reached over 23,505 participants, from 188 countries and territories around the world with two-thirds from LMICs. Open registration enables individuals and eye health teams to experience social learning within the platform, with colleagues, experts and in networks beyond. Over 300 Openly licensed educational resources, created with 110 collaborators from 25 countries, are available to download, reuse, share and adapt for local training needs.

Our Alumni, have been pivotal in supporting content creation, its delivery as educators and facilitators, as participants and sharing with local teams and strengthening professional training at an Institutional level. So far, 70% of our LSHTM eye care alumni become co-lead educators or mentors of the courses taking charge and tailoring the content for their setting to train others at the local level. Overall, the OEEH approach is enabling large numbers of eye health workers, educators and managers around the world to take a purposeful and self-directed approach to updating their own knowledge and delivering relevant professional development to eye health teams in their settings.

The Open Education in Eye Health team was awarded the 2019 Collaborative Award for Teaching Excellence (CATE) which recognises and rewards collaborative work that has had a demonstrable impact on teaching and learning.

Find out more and register for one of our OEEH courses on the LSHTM website at http://iceh.lshtm.ac.uk/oer/

Quotes from Alumni:

“I have started a weekly teaching hour for the whole team which consists of program managers and people in charge of outreach programs and vision. The optometrist presents a concept from one of course video and then I pause the video and we have interaction about the concept in our own context and if required in Hindi. The response has been great with lots of questions regarding the basics. I have found the course as a very useful resource and it is really satisfying to share the concepts with people who are actually working in the field.” Alumnus India

 “I have enjoyed the online courses and use the videos frequently in my teaching with fellows, residents and medical students.” Alumnus USA

 “For Kenya, we began with a need. We have our region and we have these courses. So as educators, as health workers, we identified this was good material that would benefit more people in our region, and what we needed to do was to contextualise it for the users in this region. So that was our need.”

Alumna from Kenya

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