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Table 2 Typical statements made by participants by key themes

From: Building capacity for information and communication technology use in global health research and training in China: a qualitative study among Chinese health sciences faculty members

Questions/Schools Guangxi University of Chinese Medicine Guilin Medical University Guangzhou Medical University Kunming Medical University Guangxi Medical University Fudan University
Understanding and perception of the definition of information and communication technology (ICT) The medium of information exchange Technology and life; study and scientific research; technology that brings convenience to people’s lives Apply ICT to solve practical problems; receive information via terminal server; platform for information exchange; disseminate audio and video material electronically; methods to know the world A technology of collecting, transmitting, processing and applying information; technology related to programming; transmission of information collected from different sources The carrier or technology that is related to the transmission of information; technology or information related to electronic computers All ICT related to computer and high technology; the collecting, processing, output and sharing of information
ICT application in routine research Literature review; resource sharing among peers; micro-lectures and massive online open courses; remote diagnosis and treatment in medicine; know the newest tendency in one’s research field Document query; students’ registration system; e-class; catch the trends in one’s research field; two- dimension code which contains extensive information At present, little technology is used for ICT; some relationship between bioinformatics and ICT; document query; the query of food sources; query and set up of databases; remote consultation; video conferences; teleconferences; examination and assay of cells and blood Multimedia classes; network examinations, remote operations; conducting experiments with software; measurement and evaluation of the quality and nutritional components of food; electronic survey questionnaires Relevant websites and public accounts on WeChat to assess trends in relevant research areas; skills on writing papers Data analysis software in epidemic areas; literature review; attain the trends in research field through public accounts on WeChat and websites; sharing of teaching resources; the platform for communication, discussion and mutual assistance among professional groups; surgical robots
Advantages of ICT-related training courses The mode is new and original; it is convenient and time saving; there are extensive contents Learning resources are abundant; contents are original and updated in time; enable participants to learn individually Extensive contents; convenient and time-saving; learning resources are abundant; can arrange the learning time by oneself and review lessons at any time One could learn repeatedly; possible to save costs The communication and convergence between different subjects and different industries can be achieved; learn the trends of research field; practical and pertinent to experimental research; learn what we are interested in Promote educational equity and share excellent learning resources; enable students to know or learn about their field of interest
Disadvantages of ICT-related training courses Lack of interactions and practices; some courses’ contents are out of date Expensive; not updated in time; expensive but of poor quality Poor quality of courses; lack of interactions; difficult to concentrate on the courses Lack of interactions; most courses are full of theories but lack practical applications; information not updated regularly Lack interaction with instructors; insufficient authority and expensive Lack of interactions; lack of continuities; requires students to be more self-controlled; easy to quit
Suggested content for ICT-related training courses To stimulate students’ and teachers’ thoughts Valuable, highly specialised and classified Include how to collect information and how to use ICT in practical applications Theoretical framework and basis of ICT; basic computer operation technology, statistical analysis; courses should be designed according to different majors Novel; timely updated Basic ICT; design different contents according to different majors and different backgrounds; statistical software and Microsoft Office software
Suggested formats for ICT-related training courses Should be varied and combine traditional classes with modern teaching methods Should not rigidly adhere to traditional teaching methods; apply some original teaching methods such as problem-based learning, case analysis Any format; theories and practical applications should be combined Basic, foundation and advanced classes could be designed according to students’ learning abilities Combining lectures with traditional teaching methods; it is not necessary to learn the course material from beginning to the end due to limited time Basic courses for general audience, videos or lectures; forums and discussion groups could be set up when it comes to the professional or occasional knowledge; applications; resource library; case studies
Suggested duration for ICT-related training courses Arrange reasonably according to the course contents and different majors Should be scheduled according to teaching syllabus and course objectives Should not be accumulated for more than 2 days; 16–20 lessons; one session can last 20–40 minutes according to course contents 20–30 class sessions would be acceptable; each session approximately 30 minutes Can be decided according to the research needs Short-period, high efficiency; make use of spare time or weekends
Challenges in ICT-related training courses Copyright; cost control; how to stimulate researchers’ new ideas and thoughts Expensive; hard to access; long duration; not regularly updated Hard to collect effective information quickly; take up too much time; the popularity of the knowledge of ICT; issues on the courses’ fees; process for assessment and evaluation Clash with faculty member’s teaching commitments; teaching methods are not favoured by faculties; whether one can benefit from course Copyright; public understanding of ICT; whether practical issues could be solved; time arrangement; whether the course clashes with faculty time arrangements Time issues: clinicians do not have spare time to attend many courses; the courses should be of short duration but high efficiencient; priorities are always given to free courses
Promotional (marketing) approaches of ICT-related training courses Seek help from administrative staff or renowned professors; promotion would not be a problem if the course is attractive and original Link the course to faculty members year-end assessment and career promotion; demo courses can be provided free at first Emphasise advantages of ICT; link course to faculty promotion; show successful model course; recruit relevant companies to promote the courses; turn to the government for help Coordinated the course with faculty time-tables; example of achievements, as these speak louder than words; show successful cases to faculty Show successful cases and course benefits; cooperate with popular relevant companies Provide course information on the official website of university/school; seek help from administrative staff