BSC’s Center for Lactation Education offers a large variety of distance learning courses. They can be completed entirely at the student’s home and community. Distance education programs at the Center are based on adult learning theory; learning is facilitated by the staff, with the student as an active learner. All courses are organized sequentially so that students acquire knowledge and skills in a manner consistent with their growth in the subject area. Course work is completed at the student’s home through role play activities, learning activities, audio-taped role play scenarios, and a written final exam. Students are required to complete outside reading that will assist them in completing assignments.
How Does Distance Learning Work?
In today’s health care climate, there is an increasing need for support personnel with specialized training in lactation. Many hospitals and health care institutions are recognizing this growing trend. Your distance learning through the Center for Lactation Education will enable you to continue your current pursuits and receive the training necessary to become a part of this exciting field. Through the Center, comprehensive professional lactation education is available to health professionals and peer counselors around the world.
You will gain advanced skills and knowledge for your career as a lactation consultant. As a professional lactation consultant, you will be qualified to educate and counsel breastfeeding mothers, handle special breastfeeding problems, develop breastfeeding support programs, and train health care providers. You may pursue employment on the staff of a hospital, clinic or physician’s practice; or you may choose to establish your own private practice. You may also seek certification through the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners.
Distance learning through the Center is competency-based. Programs provide a comprehensive review of breastfeeding management and serve as ideal preparation for the certification exam. Special emphasis is given to counseling skills, communication techniques, the health worker’s attitude and approach, and modifying policies and practices to promote successful breastfeeding. Graduates of our Lactation Consultant Course have achieved some of the highest scores on the IBLCE exam.
Upon acceptance into the Center, you are assigned an instructor who will guide you through your learning for the duration of your course. The nature of the course results in close interaction via correspondence and telephone with students. Instructors develop an awareness of the student’s capabilities, strengths, and weaknesses. They mentor students throughout the time the student is in the course, providing free consultations on breastfeeding management issues the student encounters with mothers and babies. Students frequently send practice-related questions along with their course work. Instructors respond to these questions and provide supplementary information as appropriate.
You will send your first assignment within six weeks of the date your program is sent to you. Subsequent assignments will be sent on a regular basis, allowing no more than six weeks to lapse between any two assignments. Submitting assignments within the six-week time frame will help you to finish within the established time.
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Evaluation of Student Progress
Student progress and satisfaction in the course are carefully monitored by the student’s instructor. Students will have the opportunity to redo the work necessary to meet minimum standards. By the end of the course, students must have completed all course work satisfactorily before being eligible to take the final examination. Some course work is graded on a pass/fail basis.
Instructors provide detailed feedback to all students to guide them through the course. Remediation is provided for any student who needs it. In order to ensure that all students perform to a minimum standard, activities must be completed and documented in a standard format that lends itself to consistency in grading. Point values are printed following each activity and instructors indicate the total points received. Instructors are given answer keys which provide standardized responses to student work. Instructor responses cover all objectives within the particular lesson. The written final exam and the final role play activity test comprehension of the material and achievement of the course objectives.