College of the Rockies students, faculty present at national bioethics conference

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Image of College of the Rockies' Bachelor of Science in Nursing students Kyle Tremblay and Sheena Polman holding a large poster.
College of the Rockies Bachelor of Science in Nursing students Kyle Tremblay and Sheena Polman show off the poster they used for their presentation at the Canadian Bioethics Society of Canada’s annual conference in Banff May 22 to 24.

Two College of the Rockies Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) students, Sheena Polman and Kyle Tremblay, presented at the Canadian Bioethics Society of Canada’s annual conference in Banff, Alberta May 22 to 24, along with BSN instructor Stephanie Obara and Instructional Specialist Scott Gerrity.

The group submitted abstracts and presented on the teaching and learning strategies used in their first-year Relational Practice course, specifically the use of electronic portfolios. Both Polman and Tremblay had the opportunity to use ePortfolios as a learning tool as first-year students.

The primary focus of the Relational Practice course allows BSN students to examine the factors that influence and contribute to their capacity to be caring in relation with others. This learning is made more meaningful, both personally and professionally, through the use of ePortfolios.

Students were tasked with building a creative art assignment that demonstrated an aspect of caring within the context of nursing. This art was then uploaded into each student’s ePortfolio before being shared with their classmates. Each student then received feedback from classmates and the course instructor aimed at developing a deeper understanding of the concept at hand.

In their caring art assignment, Polman chose to focus on the sub-concept of moral agency while Trembley explored the ethics of caring for persons with dementia.

“Using ePortfolios was a unique experience,” Tremblay said. “I am a first year BSN student but this is my seventh year of post-secondary. This is the first time I’ve encountered this more concept-based learning style and I found it a great platform for reflection not only in my school work, but in my practice as well. I am confident it will make me a better care provider.”

The Canadian Bioethics Society (CBS) is a national, member-driven, registered charity serving as a forum for individuals interested in sharing ideas relating to bioethics. The theme of the 2019 conference was Embracing the Disruptive Edge of Health Care.

“These two students greatly contributed to the poster presentation and session by sharing the electronic portfolios they had created with interested conference attendees,” said Obara. “In sharing the student perspective and experience, they provided valuable insight into the power of critical reflection for learning and ethical nursing practice.”

“Presenting at the conference in front of educators with Masters degrees and PhD’s was humbling and nerve-wracking but I think it went well and it seemed to be well received,” Tremblay added.

Polman and Temblay received financial support from the College’s Student Leadership Fund to attend the conference.

Learn more about College of the Rockies’ Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.


About College of the Rockies
For more than 40 years, College of the Rockies has provided post-secondary education that meets the needs and aspirations of the people, industry and businesses of our region. Each year, we welcome more than 10,000 full-time and part-time students into a full range of programs, including: skilled trades, university studies, adult upgrading, early childhood education, health and human services, business, office administration, tourism, hospitality, recreation, fire services, continuing education and contract training. Through smaller class sizes, highly-personalized instruction and dedicated support services, our students are primed to succeed in the job market, or in the next stage of their academic journey.


Heather Jackson
Manager, Communications and Marketing
College of the Rockies