At Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing, Baltimore, when one patient has a heart attack, another goes into labor and a third demands attention for a rash, it’s a typical day in the simulation lab.
Students in the Traditional 2013 class have the chance at hands-on experience in caring for high-needs patients, including Harvey the cardiopulmonary simulator, Sim Man, Noelle with newborn, and Sim Baby as part of a landmark nationwide simulation study.
JHUSON is one of 10 schools chosen by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing to participate. In its 117-student class, 103 Hopkins students are signed up to take part in the study that explores the role of simulation in prelicensure clinical nursing education, according to a news release.
The study will examine the use of simulated clinical experiences as a replacement for a portion of the time spent in traditional clinical education. Participation in the study lasts for two years, from fall 2011 through graduation in May 2013. Students are divided into three groups: 50% simulation, 25% simulation, and less than/equal to 10% simulation, which is the percentage in the current traditional curriculum.
Joyce Vazzano, RN, MS, CRNP, a faculty member and the project coordinator, said simulation gives students the hands-on experience without the anxiety of working with human beings and the environment matches their learning style.
“They’re excited to care for multiple patients in one day and look forward to applying theory to practice,” she said.
Vazzano said the debriefing method that is used after each simulation experience has been redesigned for meaningful learning that draws on the effective-, creative- and critical-thinking processes.