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EMS NOW: Understanding the Trainee

EMS NOW - a weekly highlight of emergency medical services

EMS NOW: Understanding the Trainee
By Matt Comer, EMTP
 "...we have probably all been intimidated by one thing or another in the world of EMS..."
 We have all been trainees at one time or another in our EMS careers. We know firsthand the difficulties and hardships of having to be the new guy / girl. Everything is new and simply completing a rig check is a task requiring concentration. Likewise, we have probably all been intimidated by one thing or another in the world of EMS. Maybe it was learning CPR, suctioning an airway for the first time, or maybe it was just talking to a stranger about their medical history. As field training officers or FTOs and clinical educators we must be able to remember what it was like to be in that stage of our EMS career if we wish to be successful in training. We must be able to meet the trainee where they are in their EMS career in order to facilitate successful training. Identifying with the trainee and realizing they are not a veteran EMT like ourselves; is the first step in becoming a great FTO.

The next step is to understand how the trainee will learn so that we can teach them appropriately.  Learning styles have been well studied in many areas of instruction including EMS. There are three domains of learning: Cognitive, Affective, and Psychomotor. Over the next few months we will post articles that focus on understanding and applying teaching styles which encompass all three domains. So let me quickly define the three domains individually.

Involves knowledge and the development of intellectual skills. Includes the recognition of specific facts, patterns and concepts.
the manner in which we deal with things emotionally, such as feelings, values, appreciation, enthusiasms, motivations, and attitudes.
physical movement, coordination, and use of the motor-skill areas. Development of these skills re-quires practice and is measured in terms of speed, precision, distance, procedures, or techniques in execution.
(Definitions according to Bloom)

1 comment:

  1. Rich- good thoughts here. I think that it is also important to keep in mind that amount of technology and requirements that have been introduced to the field over the past 10-20 years. When I first started, paramedicine was still young and now there are EMT-B's giving nitro. With the evolution of the practice, has to come an evolution of the FTO as well.


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