2 Nov 2023

How Joan Is Supporting Medical Simulations at Binghamton University

Binghamton University is the best public university in the northeast of the US. We knew they were using Joan devices, but before hopping on a call we didn’t know how intriguing their use case was!

We discussed Joan with Sarah Lynch, PharmD, BCACP, a clinical associate professor and director of skills education, and with Andrea Snyder, a skills education associate at Binghamton University's School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. They explained how they use Joan to help students alleviate worries, save time, and streamline medical simulation scheduling.

The problem: Time-demanding space management

Before moving to the new university building the pharmacy school faced two challenges:

They were a new program without their own spaces. When running medical simulations they needed a dedicated employee to ensure students were entering the right office at the right time. It was a time-consuming logistical nightmare.

They were using printed schedules posted on the door. This method presented a confidentiality issue due to students' tendency to discuss the cases. When schedules were posted in advance, students could see who was scheduled after them and potentially share details about the case which would nullify the surprise factor.

Discovering Joan: A game-changer for the skills lab

When Binghamton University moved to a new building, the pharmacy school had the unique opportunity to design a dedicated skills lab where students could learn and practice.

They created a lot of different specialized learning spaces for the students and they needed a streamlined solution for scheduling and coordinating learning activities.

Dr. Lynch recalls: "I remember my coworker doing a lot of research into utilizing the spaces and stumbled across Joan, which was designed for meeting management. But he recognized it could be a game-changer for our skills lab too."


Streamlining medical simulation scheduling

The new pharmacy skill lab includes eight alcoves that are set up as doctor's offices. These enable realistic simulations as students may or may not know what they're walking into as they enter the room.

Outside of each of these spaces, there is a Joan display that helps students self-distribute for their sessions and enter the office at exactly the right time.

Snyder explains: “These spaces are set up with cameras and microphones. So students need to know exactly when they go into the room and when the cameras are going to turn on for their team.”

That’s where Joan plays a key role. The students might be told to enter at 10:15 AM, but their clocks might not be synced.  Dr. Lynch elaborated: “If they get there too early, we're not going to get that piece recorded and they might not get the points for it. And if they get there too late, they're going to lose time and we're going to delay the session.”

It would be a stressful situation - if Joan wouldn’t be there to streamline the process. Now the students need to get to the lab a few minutes early and then simply wait until their name pops up on the screen. They know they're walking into the right room at the right time.

“They don’t need to wonder which one is the right alcove and when they need to enter. It’s one less thing to worry about which is especially helpful for our first and second-year students,” says Dr. Lynch. 

Additionally, Joan doesn’t show the students the whole list of people who are going into the room after them. This enables an extra layer of secrecy regarding the cases the professors want them to tackle.

Binghamton Univ. School of Pharmacy Simulation Space 1 - Copy_1

Seamless integration with Google Calendar

Joan seamlessly integrates with Google Calendar, a tool familiar to the faculty. That further streamlines the scheduling process of medical simulations.

“Our teaching assistants are different each semester. We don’t want to train them on how to use a brand-new platform they're going to use for a semester. But everyone knows how to use Google Calendar, so we just tell them to schedule student practice there and then the calendar gets synced with Joan. It's really easy and foolproof,” says Dr. Lynch.

Students and faculty appreciate the value of Joan

An educational environment is quite a bit different from workplaces where we most often see Joan being used, so we were wondering how Joan was adopted and accepted at the university.

“Faculty is always happy when you can make their lives easier. So they’re glad they have Joan,” says Dr. Lynch.

For many of the students, Joan is a new kind of tech as they weren’t yet exposed to corporate settings and meeting rooms. However, they catch up fast.

“We have current students giving tours to incoming or potential students. Joan is one of the pieces of technology that they will highlight as being something pivotal to their learning experience,” says Dr. Lynch.

Choosing Joan over alternatives

When moving into the new building there was a possibility of using iPads and setting them up to support medical simulation scheduling. However, as iPads require frequent charging and might’ve been needed elsewhere they weren’t a good solution. The other alternative was using a sheet of paper outside the door like before and dealing with the known challenges.

In the end, the faculty are more than happy they went with Joan.

“It [Joan] is small and simple. It works perfectly to organize our space and keep our simulations flowing. It removes the stress for the students as well as the faculty operating the simulation,” says Snyder.

Joan: Embodied simplicity and reliability 

In summary, Joan's simplicity, reliability, and seamless integration with Google Calendar make it the ideal solution for Binghamton University's School of Pharmacy. 

“You don't have to worry about Joan. I appreciate that. It's not a technology that I need to spend time troubleshooting. And I do this for all our other technology. I've got my troubleshooting tips. And for Joan I don't need them,” explains Snyder.

“You don't have to worry about a ton of plugging things. It’s low maintenance. It truly allows us to use one less person for a lot of these sessions,” adds Dr. Lynch. 

If you’re also looking for a solution that streamlines your booking processes in a straightforward and reliable way, contact our sales and find out which Joan is a perfect fit for your workplace.