COLLES comprises an economical 24 statements grouped into six scales, each of which helps us address a key question about the quality of the on-line learning environment:

Relevance How relevant is on-line learning to students’ professional practices?
Reflection Does on-line learning stimulate students’ critical reflective thinking?
Interactivity To what extent do students engage on-line in rich educative dialogue?
Tutor Support How well do tutors enable students to participate in on-line learning?
Peer Support Is sensitive and encouraging support provided on-line by fellow students?
Interpretation Do students and tutors make good sense of each other’s on-line communications?
Underpinning the dynamic view of learning is a new theory of knowing: social constructivism, which portrays the learner as an active conceptualiser within a socially interactive learning environment. Social constructivism is an epistemology, or way of knowing, in which learners collaborate reflectively to co-construct new understandings, especially in the context of mutual inquiry grounded in their personal experience.

Central to this collaboration is the development of students’ communicative competence, that is, the ability to engage in open and critical discourse with both the teacher and peers. This discourse is characterised by an empathic orientation to constructing reciprocal understanding, and a critical attitude towards examining underlying assumptions.

The COLLES has been designed to enable you to monitor the extent to which you are able to exploit the interactive capacity of the World Wide Web for engaging students in dynamic learning practices.


What is a Colles Fracture?

A Colles fracture is a common type of wrist fracture that can adversely affect the range of motion within your wrist in a variety of ways and cause undue amounts of pain, although there are several treatment and therapy methods that are known to be effective at treating this type of injury. When you have been diagnosed with this type of fracture, it’s important to be aware of all of the treatment options at your disposal so that you can select the one you believe will work best in your specific case.

What is a Colles Fracture?

This is an extremely common type of fracture that occurs when a bone within your forearm becomes broken. This bone is referred to as a radius bone and is situated around your wrist. There are two main bones within your forearm with the radius bone being the largest of the two. With this type of a wrist fracture, the end of the bone that’s right around your wrist becomes broken, resulting in a situation where your wrist can bend in odd ways. When you’ve been injured by this type of fracture, you will experience a substantial amount of pain that’s often accompanied by swelling in the area around your wrist that’s been affected by the fracture. When the bone remains fractured, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to grip anything with the hand, which is why it’s essential that you obtain treatment for the fracture as soon as possible.

The two groups of people who are most affected by this type of fracture include children and older people, the former due to soft bones and the latter due to brittle bones. Although this type of fracture can occur for any number of reasons, it most commonly does due to a fall when the hand is outstretched, which means that the force against your wrist is sudden and substantial. It’s also likely that you will suffer from this injury if you have been previously diagnosed with osteoporosis. This is among the most common fractures that can occur in the body, as around 15 percent of people suffer from this type of fracture at some point in their lives.

Diagnosis of the Fracture

In order for you to receive the treatment that you need to get rid of the pain and swelling associated with this type of fracture, it’s first essential that you have the fracture diagnosed, as this is the only way for a doctor to identify the best treatment plan for your specific case. There are several types of Colles fractures that you should be aware of before having the fracture diagnosed, as understanding the extent of the fracture is necessary towards obtaining the right treatment.

An open fracture is one that occurs when the bone has actually broken through the skin, while a comminuted fracture is the result of a bone breaking in over two places. An intra-articular fracture is displayed by the bone breaking directly into the wrist joint, while an extra-articular fracture is diagnosed when the bone has broken but the joint itself has not been adversely affected. Once it has been determine which type of fracture you’re suffering from, you will receive the appropriate treatment that should alleviate your pain and mend the broken bone. The extent of your treatment largely depends on the severity of the fracture. For instance, if the bone has broken through the skin, surgery will likely be necessary to fix the issue.

Colles Fracture Nerve Damage

When you suffer from this type of fracture, you may experience Colles fracture nerve damage, which occurs when the nerve endings in the area where the fracture took place become irritated. Recent developments within the medical and scientific communities have lead to the usage of stem cells for the treatment of nerve damage. When the nerve becomes too damaged, it’s impossible to cure the issue completely, although certain treatments can mitigate the pain. While conventional medications such as pain relievers and antidepressants have long been used in the treatment of nerve damage as a means of relieving pain, they are also known to create a wide array of serious complications that range from respiratory failure to dysphasia.

On the other hand, stem cell injections have the ability to transform into any kind of cell in order to promote healing and regeneration to the nerves that have become damaged without the issues that occur when using conventional medications. The stem cells that are used with this therapy can be extracted from a variety of locations throughout the body, including the hip bone, iliac crest, and around the belly area. The stem cells that are removed from your body are then processed and re-injected into the affected area. If you suffer from Colles fracture nerve damage, stem cells will be able to rejuvenate, replenish, and repair the surrounding area while also providing you with a reduction in the amount of inflammation and swelling that’s occurring around the wrist. This therapy is exceedingly safe, as the removal and injection of stem cells occurs with the usage of local anesthesia to ensure that you don’t feel any pain.

Additional Colles Fracture Treatment and Therapy Options

Along with the stem cell therapy mentioned previously, there are a wide range of treatment and therapy options that can be used in the treatment of this type of fracture, although the kind of treatment you are provided with largely depends on the severity of your fracture and the symptoms that you’re experiencing along with it. The treatments available to you can be divided into four categories, including home treatments, non-surgical treatments, surgical treatments, and physical therapy. In order to identify which Colles fracture treatment would work best to alleviate your pain and allow your fractured bone to heal, it’s important that you speak to a doctor, as they will be able to provide you with all of the information that you require.

When considering home remedies for this type of fracture, it’s important that you only attempt to use this type of treatment for immediate pain relief and to minimize the amount of side effects you experience. The first thing you need to do when when you’ve suffered from a fracture is to wrap the wrist in a splint and elevate your arm to the height of your shoulders in order to reduce the amount of swelling you experience. Your next order of business should be to place an ice pack or frozen bag of vegetables on the affected area, which helps to alleviate pain and reduce swelling. If you have over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, both of these are known to alleviate the pain that you can experience from these kinds of fractures. Move your wrist as little as possible and make sure to set an appointment with your doctor as soon as you can. If the pain is too severe, don’t wait for your doctor’s appointment, but instead focus on getting to an urgent care center.

A variety of non-surgical treatments might also be open to you in the event that your fracture isn’t too serious. When visiting your doctor, they might place your wrist into a splint or light cast in order to allow the fracture to heal on its own, although these fractures can take quite some time to heal properly. If the fracture has caused the bone to be situated in an incorrect placement, it’s possible that the bone will need to be straightened, which is done just before your wrist is placed into a cast. The casts or splints used with minor Colles fractures are typically kept on for at least a few weeks.

If the fracture is severe in nature, whether the bone has broken through the skin or has been fractured in several places, you may need to consider your surgical options, which will usually be recommended by a doctor if the surgery is absolutely necessary. During a standard surgery to correct one of these fractures, you will typically be placed under general anesthesia before the bones are straightened and held together with some type of appliance. These bones can be held together with standard pins, an external device, or screws and a plate. Following the surgical procedure, you will typically be required to wear a cast or splint during your recovery. As for physical therapy, this treatment is typically used for minor fractures during the recovery period, as this form of therapy can be useful in helping you regain your normal range of motion in the wrist.

Continued Recovery

A Colles fracture is a very serious type of fracture that can take a long time to fully heal. Although these fractures can be minor in severity, the pain may not completely dissipate until more than a year has passed since the injury. The amount of time you wear a cast or splint after your surgery all depends on your age. Children are typically recommended to wear their cast for 6-8 weeks after surgery for this type of fracture, but adults usually only wear the cast for around 2-3 weeks as the joint must be mobilized. After the cast has finally been removed, you can typically resume light or moderate activities within a month or two. You should wait to resume more intense activities until 4-6 months have passed since the surgery took place.

It’s important to understand that this type of fracture will have residual side effects even after surgery or another form of treatment, such as stem cell therapy. The wrist will typically feel stiff for a couple of months after the procedure, but many people will experience a dull pain or ache for 1-2 years after the surgery has occurred, which is why it’s always recommended that you treat your wrist with care if you’ve suffered from a fracture in this area. The risk of developing carpel tunnel syndrome is also heightened with this injury, as nerve damage in your wrist can lead to this condition.

How to Prevent This Type of Wrist Fracture

Given how easy it is to experience one of these fractures, it’s not always possible to prevent it from happening, but there are a variety of steps you can take to lower your risk of suffering from this type of fracture. For one, it’s important that you eat properly and get all of the nutrients you need for your bones to remain strong and healthy. To maintain a proper diet, make sure that your diet is filled with enough calcium or calcium supplements, the former of which you can get in large quantities from dairy products that are low in fat as well as dark green and leafy vegetables. If you go outside on a regular basis, it’s likely that you receive the Vitamin D that you require from sunlight. If not, standard supplements or foods such as salmon can provide you with these nutrients.

Another way to keep your bones strong is by exercising on a regular basis, as regular exercise helps to strengthen both your bones and muscles. Since these fractures typically occur from a fall, keeping your bones strong helps to reduce the possibility of you falling suddenly. Jogging is a useful and easy exercise that goes a long way towards strengthening the bones in the lower portion of your body to avoid falling, while weightlifting exercises will make your wrist bones stronger. A simple prevention method to consider is the usage of a wrist guard. These are small bands that you can place around your wrist when exercising that will help to protect your wrist from damage when you fall.

Now that you know all about this type of fracture and the Colles fracture treatment options available to you, it’s important that you seek treatment immediately after you’ve suffered from one of these fractures, as it’s possible for the damage to worsen if the fracture is left untreated for a lengthy period of time.