News

The Changing Scope of Distance Education - An Interview with Darcy Hardy, PhD

February 17, 2015

This article originally appeared in the February edition of the CoAEMSP newsletter. Thanks to Jennifer Warwick at the CoAEMSP for allowing us to share it here!

'Distance education' is quickly becoming a misnomer, according to Dr. Darcy Hardy, who held a seminar with NASEMSO Board members and staff on the topic late last fall. CoAEMSP Executive Director Dr. George Hatch believes her insight and messages were critical enough to the future of EMS education that he recently arranged for a follow-up interview with Dr. Hardy.

"The term 'distance education' doesn't really fit what we do today," Dr. Hardy stated. With the advent of sophisticated technological advances, 'online learning', Dr. Hardy explained, may be a more accurate term to use. Today, online learning provides accessible education "anytime, anyplace, anywhere." This exciting breakthrough means quality education is now accessible geographically, time-wise, and location-wise (such as home, office or classroom). Technology has played a huge role in changing the scope of online learning, and now employs a variety of learning tools including podcasts, audio conferences, video conferences, and chat rooms, along with traditional print materials.


The Fisdap office is closed Friday, February 6th.

February 4, 2015

The Fisdap office is closed today as we host the 2015 Research Summit. If you have a pressing support issue, please email us at support [at] fisdap [dot] net.

Happy Friday!


Mobile Data Entry : Getting Fisdap Done on the RunBy Logan Smestad

January 7, 2015

Fisdap Mobile siteTo all the students out there, this blog post is for you!  Not so long ago, I too, was once a paramedic student and, I’ll admit it, I HATED Fisdap data entry. I especially disliked doing it after the fact, when I was tired, irritable and all I really wanted was for my head to hit the pillow after a long shift.  But there is a way!

With the prevalence of smartphones, tablets and laptops, Fisdap data entry has become even easier even on shift.  One of the best tools I’ve found is the mobile Fisdap site. (Side note: Fisdap has an app that’s in beta for Android phones. You can’t enter your data in the app just yet, but that will be coming soon!) The mobile Fisdap site is a simple and easy to use platform that allows you to quickly enter in your calls on the go.  I found it especially useful after calls once we were at the hospital. 


The Ultimate List of Accreditation LinksBy Nora Vanni

December 11, 2014

Last week, Fisdap’s Mike Bowen attended the CAAHEP/CoAEMSP Accreditation Update and Evaluating Student Competency Workshop in Atlanta, GA. As we heard from Mike, these workshops can be overwhelming, as they consist of multiple days’ worth of information and requirements that educators have to keep track of.

With that said, we’re here to help: over the past few years, Fisdap has compiled a number of resources aimed at helping educators track data and prepare for their site visits. Our software exists to make your life easier and simplify the process of maintaining accreditation.

In this post, we’ve compiled a detailed list of blog posts, help documentation, and other resources that we think could be useful to those pursuing accreditation. After all, accreditation isn’t a rubber stamp: as long as you run a paramedic program, it is something you must continually have on your radar. We hope that, from this list, you can easily find the resources you’re looking for:


Paramedic Readiness Exam 4 Now AvailableBy Mike Bowen

November 12, 2014

Comprehensive Exam shieldWe are very excited to announce the release of a brand new comprehensive exam for paramedic students: the Paramedic Readiness Exam 4 (PRE4).

The PRE4 is a multiple choice summative exam which is designed to prepare students for the challenges of a state or national certification examination.

Exam Development & Pilot

As is the case for all of our tests, we owe a debt of gratitude to so many EMS educators who participated in various phases of the exam development process: item writing, item selection, revision, and test item analysis.


Sign up for the December CAAHEP/CoAEMSP Accreditation Update and Evaluating Student Competency WorkshopsBy Rachael Rosen

November 3, 2014

CoAEMSP NAEMSE logoNAEMSE and CoAEMSP have teamed up to bring this engaging and educational workshop series to four cities this year. The December workshop in Atlanta is your last chance in 2014 to learn about the CAAHEP accreditation process and best practices for student evaluation. Don't miss your chance!

The next workshop is December 4-6 in Atlanta, GA. 

Hilton Atlanta Downtown
255 Courtland St. NE
Atlanta, GA 30303

  • Accreditation Update: Thursday, Dec. 4, 8am-5pm
  • Evaluating Student Competency: Friday, Dec. 5, 8am-5pm & Saturday, Dec. 6, 8am-3pm

Studying for Your EMT or Paramedic NREMT Exam? 3 Tips for Mastering Computer Adaptive TestingBy Rachael Rosen

October 28, 2014

In case you didn’t already know, the NREMT is a computer adaptive test. Computer adaptive testing (CAT) is becoming an increasingly common practice in the world of exams. For instance, the NCLEX (the exam nurses take for their national licensure) also uses CAT1.

But let’s back up and start with what does computer adaptive testing mean? How is it different from a regular computer-based test?

First, let’s define computer-based test. Essentially, this is any test that’s administered electronically through a computer--an alternative to what was historically more common, the paper and pencil test. For instance, Fisdap exams are computer-based tests. There’s a set list of questions (in our case, multiple choice) and the testing software allows the test administrator to randomize questions and instantly grade the test.


Researching Paramedic Student Personalities: This Time, Let's Talk About NeuroticismBy Rachael Rosen

October 16, 2014

Warning Signs: Increased Neuroticism is Associated with Poor Professional Behavior during Paramedic Student Contacts

Mike BowenFisdap’s Director of Testing Mike Bowen worked alongside David Page, a paramedic educator at Inver Hills Community College, author and national speaker, and Luke Stanke, a psychometrician, on an award-winning research project that looked at the affective domain through the lens of personality traits.

In the research project, “Warning Signs: Increased Neuroticism is Associated with Poor Professional Behavior during Paramedic Student Contacts” Bowen examined the relationships between students’ neuroticism scores on the Fisdap Entrance Exam and their preceptors’ ratings of their professional behavior, as outlined in the National Registry of EMTs (NREMT) Psychomotor Competency Portfolio Project (PCPP) and recorded in Fisdap. The results showed a positive correlation between paramedic students' level of neuroticism and their preceptors' rating of their professional behavior. In other words, students with a high degree of neuroticism were likely to show signs of unprofessional behavior. 

This research begs some further questions. How does neuroticism, as a personality trait, impact the paramedic’s interactions with patients, preceptors, or partners? And if a paramedic students tests for signs of neuroticism, will they be a good paramedic? How can educators work with these students to assess their fit for paramedicine and help them coach them through paramedic school and their internship?

I met with Mike Bowen to ask him some questions about the research his team did and learn more about the takeaways from this research, which he reminded me is in its infancy.


Attend the 2015 Research SummitBy Rachael Rosen

October 8, 2014

2014 Fisdap Research Summit

You're invited to attend the 2015 Fisdap Research Summit on February 6-7 in Minneapolis, MN.

Attending the Research Summit gives you an excellent opportunity to work with research experts, statisticians and programmers on a research project that can drive evidence-based changes in EMS education. Many of the research projects that begin at the Research Summit go on to win awards and be published in national research journals.

If you'd like to attend, please fill out our online application by Friday, October 31.


Lab Skills Refresher By Rachael Rosen

July 24, 2014

Our July 23 webinar focused on how to implement Lab Skills in your program's Fisdap account.

Lab Skills (or Lab Practice) is a section of the Skills Tracker that enables you to set goals and track students’ progress toward skill acquisition when they’re in the formative stages of the program.

Lab skills are tracked differently from lab and clinical skills. Lab skills are tracked in a separate interface and do not necessarily include the full patient assessment or narrative that students document for their field and clinical internships.

Lab Skills are also completely customizable. In this webinar, we show you how to set up and configure the following:

  1. Lab practice report vs. Grad Requirements

  2. Quick Eval vs. Skill Sheet

  3. Semester 1 vs. Semester 2


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