Instructional simulations are “when students use a model of behavior to gain a better understanding of that behavior” (Blecha et al., 2012) Simulations are
often used to help students understand real-world issues about society, economics, nature and the environment, and science (Blecha et al, 2012).
Simulations are often implemented into medical education and included within the game-based learning literature. High-fidelity simulations paired with game
dynamics and competitive game elements can increase student engagement and enhance learning (Epper, Derryberry, & Jackson, 2012).
According to Blecha et al (2012), simulations can be used to teach scientific methods and reflect on and extend knowledge. This happens through “deep
learning” with engaging simulations like model building and experiments,
data sampling, and outcome prediction, as well as extended discussion and reflection.
Porter (2004) supports the learning effectiveness of simulations in students’ ability to apply learning to real-life situations and understand concepts
more quickly (as cited in Blecha, 2012).
Blecha et al (2012) suggests three things when considering using simulations in the classroom:
- Instructor preparation is crucial and often time consuming
- Students must actively participate
- There must always be follow-up discussion
In a critical review of simulation-based medical education research, McGaghie, Issenberg, Petrusa and Scalese (2009) recommended the following best
- Deliberate practice
- Curriculum integration
- Outcome measurement
- Simulation fidelity
- Skill acquisition and maintenance
- Mastery learning
- Transfer to practice
- Team training
- High-stakes testing
- Instructor training
- Educational and professional context (p. 52)
- Issenberg, B. S., Mcgaghie, W., C., Petrusa, E. R., Lee Gordon, D., & Scalese, R. J. (2005). Features and uses of high-fidelity medical simulations that lead to effective learning: A BEME systematic review. Journal of Medical Teacher, 27(1), 10 – 28. doi:10.1080/01421590500046924
Related Evaluation and Assessment Resources
- Blecha, B., Haynes, B., McBride, M., Riley, T., Rowell, K., McDoldrick, K.,… Simkins, S. (2012) Teaching with simulations, Pedagogy in Action: the SERC portal for educators. Retrieved at http://serc.carleton.edu/sp/library/simulations/index.html
- Epper, R. M., Derryberry, Al, & Jackson, S. (2012). Game-based learning: Developing an institutional strategy. Educause. Retrieved from http://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/ERB1208.pdf
- McGaghie, W. C., Issenberg, S. B., Petrusa, E. R., & Scalese, R. J. (2010). A critical review of simulation-based medical education research: 2003: 2009. Medical Education, 44, 50–63. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2923.2009.03547.x. Retrieved from http://chua2.fiu.edu/nursing/anesthesiology/courses/ngr%20msn%20rsh%20project/mcgaghie%20sim%20lit%20review%202003-2009%20meded%20jan%202010.pdf
Posted by: Eron Drake
Original Posting Date: 10/27/14