Malawi Nursing Studies

The Community Systems Strengthening for Equitable Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (COSYST-MNCH) Project is funded by Irish Aid/Higher Education Authority (of Ireland). It involves a collaboration between DCU, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) and the College of Medicine in Malawi, as well as non-governmental (NGO) partners in Malawi to undertake research as well as to develop a blended learning M.Sc in Community Systems Health Research.

About the Project

Objectives & Impact

The decision for the RCSI to work with DCU and the College of Medicine on this project was as a result of successful prior partnerships and recognition of the expertise that we could bring to the project. Dr Anne Matthews, Associate Professor, School of Nursing and Human Sciences is a key member of the global steering committee for the project and is involved with the teaching of both face to face and online modules. Lisa Donaldson, Learning Technologist  has provided the technical direction for the design and delivery of the blended learning programme and ensures the best implementation of educational technologies to achieve a supportive and engaging online environment. Dr Pamela Hussey has also supported and guided the project.

A productive partnership

M.Sc in Community Systems Health Research

The blended learning M.Sc seeks to build capacity on the ground in Malawi for NGO employees to understand, commission and interpret health systems research. Additionally, the programme will continue to strengthen the digital competencies of faculty in all collaborating institutions through comprehensive training and hands on experience.

A substantial challenge in this international collaborative project is balancing the quality and availability of online resources with the constraints of relatively poor Internet and technology infrastructure in Malawi. The project team has overcome these challenges to offer high quality digital learning which encompasses a range of Web 2.0 tools to help scaffold collaborative activities. The use of these technologies embedded in the programme is helping DCU with our partner to make a real difference in Malawi.