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28 February 2019

Faculty staff develop short nursing course for Syrian refugees

The course is providing access to higher education for Syrian refugees and disadvantaged local communities in Jordan and Lebanon.

Illustration of healthcare professionals

Julie Bliss, Head of Practice Learning, has been working with the PADILEA team at King's Online to develop a four-week-long introductory course 'Introduction to Nursing: The Role of Nurses Around the World,’ for Syrian refugee students in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region, interested in pursuing a career in nursing or other healthcare professions.

King’s is the lead partner in a project named Partnership for Digital Learning and Increased Access (PADILEIA); the aims of the project are to increase access to higher education for Syrian refugees and disadvantaged local communities in Jordan and Lebanon, via innovative digital learning solutions. 

PADILEIA is supported by UK Aid - Strategic Partnerships for Higher Education, Innovation and Reform. 

A generation of young people have had their education and lives interrupted by the civil war, and refugee students face numerous barriers accessing higher education and the job market, including low levels of digital literacy and English language. PADILEIA's research indicates that nursing, medicine and public health is the most popular field for further study and career aspirations for Syrian refugees in Jordan and Lebanon.

This new online short course looks at the contribution of nurses to the health and well-being of individuals and communities around the world. It explores the different roles nurses play, including their role in public health, and introduces the main principles of nursing. 

The course has been designed to engage disadvantaged students who may otherwise not be able to access online learning; the visual design and animation elements are suitable for low bandwidths, the course has been developed on FutureLearn – a fully mobile accessible platform, and the course is delivered with additional language support. 

Refugee learners have tested the material and provided feedback into the course development through a focus group held in Lebanon by our partners American University of Beirut. 

From September, it is hoped that the course will offer King’s credit to a cohort of refugee learners, to help them access further study, training and job opportunities. The course launches in March 2019.