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A standard operating procedure for developing and hosting a webinar for healthcare professionals new to online teaching
  1. Marije P Hennus1,
  2. Marjel van Dam2
  1. 1 Pediatric Intensive Care, Wilhelmina Children's Hospital University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  2. 2 Intensive Care Center, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to Dr Marjel van Dam, Intensive Care Center, UMC Utrecht, Utrecht 3508 GA, The Netherlands; m.j.vandam{at}

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In the previous decades, distance learning in (medical) education, has taken flight worldwide. Many medical educational institutions have successfully embraced online distance learning (ODL), with online courses now being delivered by a great number of organisations, ranging from community colleges to renowned universities all around the globe.1–4 The current era of physical distancing in light of the COVID-19 pandemic has further underscored the need for online learning programmes for healthcare professionals. Although some medical educators with a degree in teaching may have abundant experience in developing and hosting online training programmes (eg, ODL postgraduate programmes), many clinical teachers, for example, physicians, nurses and other allied healthcare professionals, may feel quite hesitant and out of their depth when faced with the request to provide their lectures or trainings online instead of face to face. Without previous training and/or specific expertise, developing and presenting an engaging e-learning can be quite a challenge. To help overcome this practical dilemma, we have developed a robust standard operating procedure (SOP) for clinical teachers with limited experience in online teaching on how to develop and host an engaging webinar.

A webinar, an aggregation of the words ‘web-based’ and ‘seminar’ can be defined as a presentation, lecture or workshop which is transmitted real time through the internet with the option to interact with the presenter and/or other participants.5 Alternatively, a recording of the webinar can often be viewed at a later moment but does not offer the option of live interaction. Webinar history parallels that of the internet with the appearance of predecessors like real-time text messaging apps emerging at the end of 1980s, followed by web chats and instant messaging apps in the mid 1990s, to the registration of the trademark ‘webinar’ in 1998.6

With today’s available software, it is no longer deemed …

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  • Contributors Both authors contributed equally in creating and writing this article.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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