The week I found out 140 characters is not a lot to work with…by @NurMilenkovic

I had the great opportunity to curate the @nursingSU twitter account for a week (07.11.16 – 13.11.16). I thought it would be something really easy and simple to do, you know – browse twitter like I already do with my own social media. Boy, was I wrong! The twitter account has quite the following and vast amounts of notifications came with it. I was far from prepared for that bit, although I did feel very popular for a week! During my time as curator, I was on my first week of placement and was lucky that I worked 8:00 till 16:00, so my “twitter times” corresponded quite nicely with my bus journey, which made the dreary, rainy, coffee-deprived morning so much more enjoyable. I am fairly new to twitter, having started an account purely to be able to participate in a day out that my module (@ICYPN) in year one had organised. I had always understood that it was a sort of micro-blogging, where you could say what was on your mind at that moment and share it with the world. I was also aware of the 140-character limit. What I was not aware was my stubbornness not to use shorthand or abbreviations, which meant that half my time was spent trying to essentially manage a word count. As the week went on, I think I improved at getting straight to the point, and using the various options available on the site (retweeting, quoting, and simple replying to tweets), who knows, this might be a skill that may come in use in documentation in nursing notes, staff don’t have the time to write a paragraph per entry right? During the week, I was also able to have some very interesting conversations with people from around the country, I found out that London PAD documents do not have a section to take into account reasonable adjustments of the students, and that nurses nation-wide were ready to get up in arms to defend their profession when belittled and told they should “stay practical” rather than pursue PhDs. I found it difficult to get students to engage with the account on a regular basis, but I definitely got plenty of input from staff nurses, health care assistants, WeNurses accounts, and PEFs. I think my favourite discussion was during a #NurChat on the student and mentor relationship (took place on 8.11.16). Despite forgetting to include the hashtag in half of my comments during the chat, I was able to gain some great insight on what both students and mentors expect from the relationship – Students want assistance and guidance in both skills and knowledge about the placement, mentors would like the student to have done at least some background reading about their placement rather than showing up completely green. @NurChat has created a timeline of the chat, which I strongly urge you to have a look at as there were some great tips. Finally, I thought that during my time as curator, I would add a small personal touch with #ClosingThoughts, partially to summarise the most important thing I learnt that day either on placement or during my tweeting, and partially to simply “log off”.

And so, my #ClosingThoughts for this experience? 140 characters more than enough to get a message across, you just need to be smart about how you use them.

Nur Milenkovic

By salforduniversitynursing Posted in Blog

‘Not only have I gained confidence, I’ve had fun’ by @lynseymarieCYP

A reflection on curating @nursingSUni by student nurse @lynseymarieCYP

Before curating the nursing Twitter account, I was very nervous. I’ve tweeted and had my personal account for a while, and during my first year of the course I created a professional account. I didn’t really know what to tweet. I started off with tweeting about lectures and excitement about placement and other tweets from professionals. Tweeting on the School’s account seemed very daunting to me as there was a large audience, majority professional and I did not want to ‘mess up’ or seem like I did not know what I was doing. Having such a wide audience of active users was the best as it allowed voices to be heard, discussions to be made, learning to be shared.

Working as a trio as well helped me as I felt there was not as much pressure in terms of what to tweet and being on my own. We were able to build on what was said before, a topic that we could continue discussions on and voice questions and thoughts we felt were important and wanted to share with the community, which was particularly helpful during the Safeguarding Workshop we had as it allowed us to share key points/views we felt everyone should be aware of.

Over the week I felt that I had grown in confidence. I enjoyed all the opinions and discussions being shared as it allowed me to learn more and see how social media is an outlet that we can use in a positive way. As well as this it allows professional contacts to grow, updates on new articles and research being released, conferences to be announced among so many other things. I understand the role that it plays in supporting us all and feel this is something that I want to do again at some point in the future.

Not only have I gained confidence, I’ve had fun and been able to participate and help create good discussion (all whilst being able to add something to my CV). I would recommend it to anyone and everyone!

By salforduniversitynursing Posted in Blog

Sure, you’ll make a mistake once in a while… by @LukiKnowsBest

This is a bit delayed from my week curating as I’ve had my head in books and articles revising for my upcoming exam.
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I’ve used Twitter in a personal capacity since January 2009 and am a big proponent of social media being a big part of social change and having being introduced to the network that nurses have started building across social media in my first year. Hearing how much passion @levylass and @wlasinclair talk about how social media can change nursing and the way in which is can assist teaching inspired me to get more involved in it. Don’t shy away from social media for fear of doing wrong. Sure, you’ll make a mistake once in a while; that’s how you learn and you sure as hell won’t make it twice.

Before curating the account, I started exploring the community @WeNurses and started getting involved in the tweet chats that they hold. I learned that they’re a fantastic opportunity to not only be social with nurses and other practitioners I wouldn’t normally be able to come into contact with but to share resources and evidence based best practice in order to build my own knowledge. Following this I was happy to volunteer for the WeGetTogether (#WGT16) as a student volunteer and had a wonderful day talking with different practitioners who all had the same passion for social media and healthcare. DuringScreen Shot 2016-05-23 at 06.44.56 my curation, I made specific time to be involved in the tweet chat held by @Wenurses on Reflection and was able to discuss and share my thoughts and resources to others. I was particularly happy that I got positive feedback on my contributions sharing simple tips and models of reflection I use and make get some new followers from this chat.

My week was centred around my first branch specific model and was very excited to share my passion for mental health whilst using the account. I believe mental health and mental health nursing is unfairly stigmatised by not only the public but by other nurses/students as well. When in the start of the year discussing which branch we were from and disclosing that I was doing mental health it brought about comments such as “that’s scary, don’t the patients all attack you” and similar comments along the same theme. It’d be untrue to say that mental health clients are not going to become aggressive/violent but the same could be said of any patient. Any aggression stems from their own anxiety and fear reacting to their illness in the same way that someone with a physical illness reacts to their pain. As student nurses we owe mental health service users exactly the same compassion and care that we would offer a patient who is suffering from a physical illness but sadly this is not always the case. I’d hope, in some small way, that discussing mental health themes and addressing and challenging this stigma through tweeting from the @nursingsuni account and my own that it can in some way bring about a change even in a few people’s minds.

I’ll leave you with a quick thank you to Wendy, Moira and Neil for their support and a favourite quote of mine from Margaret Mead

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

A warm welcome to our guest curator @clarentina

Clare has volunteered to curate our @nursingSUni twitter account for the week commencing 23rd May 2016. We love having guest curators to build our networks. Here’s a little bit about @clarentina 

I am aScreen Shot 2016-05-21 at 09.01.07 second and final year student living in South London. Sound a bit weird? Let me explain. I am one of a small bunch of student nurses who are studying nursing after completing a first degree. I graduated from the University of Manchester (@OfficialUoM) in Cell Biology in 2009 and spent four years working for Anthony Nolan (@anthonynolan) helping to match donors with patients in need of a bone marrow transplant. After an amazing four years I decided I wanted to play a more frontline role and applied for nursing. I started my PgDip Adult Nursing at @lsbu_hsc in 2014 and am due to graduate in September 2016- hoping to take up a newly qualified nurse post at @uclh.

I love nursing but I have also seen plenty of ‘the other side’ as I live with type 1 diabetes. I am routinely cared for by fantastic staff who inspire me for my future career. Type 1 diabetes makes working on the ward a bit tricky, but I muddle through. As such, I am interested in patients living with long-term conditions and co-write a blog, When I’m not nursing, I love running, and am trying to run a mile every day in 2016. How that fits in with long days remains to be seen!

The first day of my curation of the Twitter account will be the first day of my final placement so wish me luck! I’m looking forward to chatting to other student nurses around the country.

My week curating @nursingSUni by @stu_vichowson

My week curating @nursingSUni by Student Nurse Victoria Howson Screen Shot 2016-05-20 at 13.10.46I have used Twitter for a few years personally, but never really used used it to contect with people other than my family or close friends. When I started my Nursing degree in September 2014, I remember my Fitness to Practice lecture and how to use social media professionally and I also remember the lecturer telling us about how Twitter is a good way to connect with other professionals in the Nursing world and other health care professionals. It was after this lecture that I created my student Twitter account @stu_vichowson and I haven’t turned back since!

Twitter is such an excellent way to connect with other students and lecturers that help provide support to you throughout your training and then onto your career. There are also a number of professionals in the Twitter world that can provide you with support and useful information that can help you with your career. @WeNurses encourage you to interact and get involved in their live chats which are a brilliant way to learn and build up your confidence with Twitter and they make you feel part of a big Nursing family. I unfortunately missed the majority of the @WeNurses chat during my week as I had my head stuck in books and journal articles revising for my upcoming OSCE, but even though I do have my assessment fast approaching I felt very well supported during my time curating by the lovely lecturers behind the @nursingSUni Twitter account.

I would definitely recommend other students to get involved and help out curating the account as it has definitely improved my confidence with using Twitter professionally. Anyone who is a bit nervous or new to Twitter should definitely give it a go as there is an excellent support network!

I will definitely be back and tweeting from the account again hopefully soon! I’ve now made it one of my PDP goals!

Thanks for everything!

‘Nice to tweet you’ by @narnill

‘Nice to tweet you’ by Student Nurse Nicola Arnill

Processed with Moldiv

Processed with Moldiv

In October 2014, I was new to Twitter and all things nursing. My Sociology tutor had mentioned Twitter’s advantages for student nurses. I wasn’t convinced. I thought Twitter was for following the lives of celebrities, but I wanted to be the best nurse I can be, and if my trusted tutor said Twitter helps with that, who was I to argue?

It’s October 2015 and I am connecting with other healthcare professionals (including students), hearing service-user voice and acquiring knowledge about services, policies and research informing evidence-based practice. I am still learning ways to benefit from social media in a professional sense, but do we ever stop learning?

Our neighbours came to talk to us about using social media (#SoMe) professionally and fortunately for me I was presented with an opportunity to curate the Salford University’s Nursing School Twitter account. After a year of intermittent use of Twitter, my voice was to be truly heard. And what better way to use this opportunity than to reach out to my colleagues and encourage them to realise the advantages Twitter can have on our nursing knowledge, and contacts, and thus on the children and young people we will be working with, and their families, of course.

My goal was to reach out to students and enlighten them to the potential to share learning and experiences; and build a support network with other nursing students, particularly those sharing a similar placement circuit.  There is a strong likelihood that neighbouring students will be our colleagues in future and communication now could enhance our experience and the healthcare we provide when we are qualified nurses.

I felt anxious about how receptive my colleagues would be and decided to communicate with them via Facebook as they are more familiar with this platform. I shared with them some rationale for joining Twitter and signposted them to ‘Twitterversity’ guidance on using Twitter as healthcare professionals. I offered my support for anyone who wanted to join Twitter but had difficulty navigating, or had little confidence using, the site. I also posted to the 2015 cohort page, not only to include them in sharing and connecting with one another, but also because I feel that there would be a greater interest in Twitter if this was more heavily discussed at the start of the student-nursing journey.

Throughout my week curating, colleagues caught me between lectures, or in seminars, and said they were following but were not sure how to get involved. This felt like a small victory! There were people talking to me who I had never previously engaged in conversation with. I encouraged them to engage by simply ‘favouriting’ or ‘retweeting’ posts that they agree with; and gave details of Nurchat and WeNurses chats. I did not see many of my colleagues engage with these chats on Twitter, but again was approached and informed they had been following. My colleagues were keen, but lacking in confidence using Twitter; which is something I hope my school will address.

I have grown in confidence utilising Twitter and I believe I will continue to benefit from my professional online presence throughout my career; through networking, learning, sharing and reflection. My time curating has introduced me to people who I can seek advice and support from; through followers on Twitter and through my engagement with colleagues in university.

Thank you, Salford, for affording me this incredible opportunity. I hope this is the start of something special. Nice to tweet you.

By salforduniversitynursing Posted in Blog

Nursing and Podiatry….welcoming @veronicaann20 to @nursingSUni

This week we are delighted to have Veronica Newton @veronicaann20 curating our nursing twitter account @nursingSUni. Veronica has recently joined The University of Salford as a Lecturer in Podiatry. Not only is she very interested in using social media to support her teaching, she is really hoping to work more closely with other healthcare professions. This in tandem with our plans to develop the @nursingSUni account has resulted in Veronica volunteering her time and energy to curating the account this week. We know the Twitter nurse community will give her a warm welcome but we also hope that we can share learning and connections too. There’s a lot for nursing and podiatry to learn from each other and this is an ideal opportunity to ask questions and build networks so we hope you will give her a follow and join the discussions.

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By salforduniversitynursing Posted in Blog

We’re trying something new here at @nursingSUni…connecting with our neighbours

We’ve been running @nursingSUni as a partnership account between staff and students since January 2014. We think you’ll agree that it’s been a success, but not wanting to sit still for too long, we thought we’d try something new…

A few weeks ago @wlasinclair and @levylass were invited to our neighbours at the University of Manchester to talk about social media in nurse education. We spoke to a group of CYP student nurses who share a similar placement circuit as our own students and will go on to be employed in the same clinical areas. We thought it would be a great idea for Salford and Manchester students to be better connected in the hope of building networks and cohesive teams for the future. We were very pleased to hear that student nurses in Manchester already followed our account and that they loved the idea of co-curation. They are even in the process of setting up their own similar account. Therefore we have invited University of Manchester student children’s nurse Nicola Arnill @narnill to curate @nursingSUni next week. We hope that by connecting student nurses in this way, it will create a local network of student nurses who can share their learning and experiences.

We hope you will welcome Nicola @narnill as our guest curator next week from Monday 19th October 2015 🙂

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By salforduniversitynursing Posted in Blog

My week curating @nursingSUni by @Lizlivvi

When I offered to curate, Twitter was new

However in September, university was too

So excited by the chance, I gave it a go

Initially nervous but went with the flow.

The welcome I got made me smile all day

Advice was shared, supported all the way

I was connecting with professionals and peers,

Confidence came, away went the fears

My tweets reached an audience so varied and great

It was a privilege to do, an opportunity I’d rate

I learnt so much, made connections, had fun

And as a mum fit it round the school run!

I certainly recommend curating to all

I grew on Twitter, I felt so tall

Communicating on such a grand scale

You can only succeed… create your tale

By salforduniversitynursing Posted in Blog

A week in charge of Twitter by @amieemhxx

A Week in Charge of Twitter By Amiee Hogg (Yr 1 Student Nurse)

I was a little nervous about agreeing to take control of the University Twitter account. I have followed the account since I got my offer last year and I have seen how it has been managed by past students. I felt like I had a lot to live up to and this is what made me feel a little nervous about taking the reins. I was apprehensive about being in control knowing that the university has so many connections with healthcare professionals on twitter. I kept worrying about messing up or saying something that I shouldn’t say. Turns out I shouldn’t have been worried at all. The first tweet I sent out simply stated that it was a week of “firsts” for me and that this was my first tweet for the university. From that point, things seemed to flow. I got involved with chats and tried to engage with other twitter users whilst thinking about different information which I could tweet which would be of interest to those in twitter land.

The thing I most enjoyed about my week on twitter was taking part in the twitter chats. There are so many thoughts, theories and opinions out there and I felt like I learnt a lot. After I had finished one of the WeNurses chats I sat back and read through the evening’s discussion. There were some really interesting points of view and reasons for different approaches to care. I had never thought that twitter could be used as a learning tool. It is not just a social media outlet. It is a place where people care learn from each other, share ideas, develop and most importantly connect with like-minded people.

I tried to engage with users as much as possible and I tried to add a little humour to some of the posts. After all, you have to have a little bit of humour to be a student nurse.

All in all I really enjoyed my week and I would encourage anyone to get involved with taking control of the University’s twitter account. Don’t be afraid to get involved. There is a whole new way of learning out there and a massive support network which you can connect with.

By salforduniversitynursing Posted in Blog