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Smartphones in Nursing Education


CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing: August 2011 - Volume 29 - Issue 8 - p 449-454
doi: 10.1097/NCN.0b013e3181fc411f
Feature Article

Smartphones are a new technology similar to PDAs but with expanded functions and greater Internet access. This article explores the potential uses and issues surrounding the use of smartphones in nursing education. While the functions of smartphones, such as sending text messages, viewing videos, and access to the Internet, may seem purely recreational, they can be used within the nursing curriculum to engage students and reinforce learning at any time or location. Smartphones can be used for quick access to educational materials and guidelines during clinical, class, or clinical conference. Students can review instructional videos prior to performing skills and readily reach their clinical instructor via text message. Downloadable applications, subscriptions, and reference materials expand the smartphone functions even further. Common concerns about requiring smartphones in nursing education include cost, disease transmission, and equipment interference; however, there are many ways to overcome these barriers and provide students with constant access to current clinical evidence.

Author Affiliations: Vanderbilt University School of Nursing, Nashville, TN (Ms Phillippi); and University of Tennessee at Knoxville College of Nursing (Ms Phillippi, Dr Wyatt).

There were no sources of funding for this work beyond academic employment.

The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

Corresponding author: Julia C. Phillippi, MSN, CNM, 354 Frist Hall, 461 21st Ave S, Nashville TN 37240 (

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.