Beyond the Simulation Lab: Introducing and using Immersive Virtual Reality Simulation
Benefits of Simulation for Nursing Students
What is a simulation for nursing students? How effective are simulations, particularly virtual reality systems, for learners? Read Here!
Simulations have a wide range of applications in different industries, including aviation, IT, engineering, nuclear energy, military, drones, law enforcement, allied health, medicine, and nursing.
Simulation in nursing is a medical activity that replicates or mimics the actual clinical scenario. It involves low, medium, and high-fidelity manikins, role-playing games/gamification, standardized patients, skill stations, computer-assisted activities, and VR/AR immersive simulations.
VR simulations combine computer-generated graphics, AI-based algorithms, and three-dimensional technologies to create a realistic clinical scenario, a medical activity that requires knowledge application and improves students' engagement in the role of a healthcare professional. Read on!
Empowers Nursing Students
One of the most significant advantages of medical simulations is to increase motivation among nursing students and empower them to complete specific tasks in various immersive environments, such as diagnostics, treatment, IV procedures, anesthesia, and surgical assistance. It allows nurses to improve clinical skills, make critical and evidence-based decisions, and observe the outcomes in action.
Clinical simulations improve students' skills and help them retain theoretical and practical knowledge, increasing the overall learning ability and satisfaction levels. A growing body of research evidence shows that immersive VR simulations are a sound pedagogical strategy for nursing students to develop clinical competencies.
In addition, VR simulations, virtual labs, AR apps, and hybrid simulations provide a safe, effective, and immersive environment for nursing students to learn and apply the cognitive skills needed for practice.
Not only do simulations increase knowledge retention, but they also boost students' self-confidence, improve patient care experiences, enhance communication, and streamline psychomotor skills. These skills play a critical role in nursing trainees' professional development.
Experiential learning is one of the most significant advantages of simulations in nursing, allowing students to absorb knowledge, practice repeatedly, and improve their skills in a simulated (real-life-like immersive environment).
Although simulations can't ultimately improve or replace clinical experience, they allow students to maintain experiential learning to supplement their professional development and augment clinical skills.
For instance, high-fidelity simulations enable nursing students to generate, develop, and improve their communication skills. Simulations also increase self-confidence, allowing the learners to make crucial decisions without worrying about harming the patient. Nursing students can also use VR simulations to practice, observe, and correct their mistakes.
Improves Clinical Judgment Competencies
Clinical readiness focuses on developing nurses' judgment competencies in the clinical environment. It involves various cognitive processes, allowing students to think, analyze, and develop sophisticated solutions to address a specific problem.
Simulations help students improve the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required for teamwork, collaboration, and communication in a therapeutic situation. It streamlines their ability to communicate with patients and their families and use evidence-based knowledge to implement safety measures.
Simulations, including VR/AR simulations, have become an integral component of nursing education, leading to improved critical thinking, interprofessional communication, data collection/analysis, medical records management, teamwork, patient management, care prioritization, identifying nursing quality indicators, telehealth, infection prevention/control, and response in emergencies.