Developing Simulated Learning Experiences

Picture of Kathleen Atchison
Grading in Simulation
by Kathleen Atchison - Monday, April 25, 2011, 12:45 AM


I'm looking for some information from those who are using simulation in a school setting.  I would like to know whether or not simulation is part of students course grades  If not, why not  If so; for what course, what measures are used, and what percentage of the grade are simulaton exercises. 


Picture of Marjorie Scheikl
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Marjorie Scheikl - Wednesday, April 27, 2011, 7:00 AM
We do count simulation into course grades but the grade is not based on performance. The grade is made up of preparation assignments, participation and following dress code, presence in debriefing and post simulation surveys or reflections.

Picture of Suzie Kardong-Edgren
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Suzie Kardong-Edgren - Wednesday, April 27, 2011, 11:15 AM

I am glad that the grading, if it must be done, is based on those items. However, there is research to suggest that many of our younger age students are not developomentally able, no matter what we do, to really "reflect deeply." We also recognize those students as the ones who do the assignment, but one can tell when reading it that there is no real or deep understanding of the content or the goal of said assignment. That deeper more mature understanding may come later but for some, it may never come. With your other additions to the grading rubric, I do not think a student would be penalized too badly for this missing depth of understanding.

I would hope that those who "grade' have all been formally educated in some standardized fashion in debriefing and simulation education. And that there has been norming for inter-rater reliability. Or that one faculty member grades EVERYONE, so they see the full gamut of behaviors exhibited in a scenario.

I am sure the students understand when a scenario is formative and not graded and when there is a formal summative assessment going on?

Picture of Kathleen Atchison
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Kathleen Atchison - Wednesday, April 27, 2011, 12:58 PM

Thank you for sharing your ideas.

We have student led debriefings where students reflect on what happened in the scenario.  There is research about how reflection helps people to learn and it is the basis for our debriefing sessions. 

We find that students do learn from watching and reflecting, and they perform better each time, even with respect to the higher level items and even in scenarios that they never actually participated in themselves. 

Our scoring system contains 5 higher level items that require a deeper understanding of the situation and 40 beginning level items, such as safety checks.  We have a staff of 7 FT simulation faculty each who conduct 25-60 simulations/week.  They have all be trained and mentored, by me, in the methodology and we conduct regular inter-rater reliabilty testing.  I do agree with you that qualified faculty and assurance of reliable evaluations is necessary.  They are key to our success.

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Re: Grading in Simulation
by Cheryl Landis - Thursday, May 19, 2011, 4:53 PM

I am very interested in your scoring system. I teach practical nursing students and would love to see how it could be adapted to this level of learner. So far we have not graded simulations with the exception of a post op check off, which is not really a group scenario. Would you mind emailing me. Thanks!

Cheryl Landis MSN RN

Clinical Simulation Coordinator

Lancaster Co. Career and Technology Center

Willow Street, PA 17584

Picture of elizabeth tipps
Re: Grading in Simulation
by elizabeth tipps - Wednesday, August 3, 2011, 1:29 PM
Would you please share your tool one more time!   Your help is greatly appreciated.
Picture of Eileen Sikinger
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Eileen Sikinger - Thursday, December 13, 2012, 9:16 AM
I am also interested in your grading system can you send me your rubics.

Picture of Jennifer Mefford
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Jennifer Mefford - Thursday, September 12, 2013, 11:11 AM


Can you please share your grading system with me. Thank you!!

Picture of Michelle Olech
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Michelle Olech - Thursday, June 2, 2011, 2:17 PM
Hello Suzie,

I am interested in the research regarding developmental level and reflection. I would appreciate any references you can provide for this literature?

Thank you!
Picture of Smitha Joel
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Smitha Joel - Tuesday, August 28, 2012, 2:14 PM
thanks, the discussions were very helpful
Picture of kathy gendron
Re: Grading in Simulation
by kathy gendron - Saturday, April 30, 2011, 5:28 PM
We are grading the students in HPS in their last semester. At this time I have them do a self evaluation on themselves and I review and adjust the grade accordingly. We have a rubric I would be glad to share with you if you tell me where to forward.  As far as the grade:  it is 7% o their clinic grade. They do 4 scenarios but are only graded on the 2 that they play a major role in (the primary or secondary nurse). They are evaluated on a prep paper (which is their ticket into HPS), assessment of patient, labs, etc, critical thinking, skills and technology, communication and teamwork.  We have only done this for 2 semesters and to be honest it is hard to objectively evaluate the students when we are running the scenario, being the patient, etc. We are continually evaluating how to improve our grading in HPS. Ideas are always welcome!
Picture of Linda shubert
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Linda shubert - Saturday, April 30, 2011, 8:44 PM

We also are looking to develop a scenario specific to the last semester students that will be their only graded one. I would be very much interested in looking at your grading rubric.

Picture of Deborah Bambini
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Deborah Bambini - Sunday, May 1, 2011, 8:29 AM


I would appreciate your sharing of the rubric. We do not currently grade during simulation but are exploring the possibilities.


Deb Bambini

Picture of Wendy Grbach
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Wendy Grbach - Sunday, May 1, 2011, 11:49 AM

Hi Kathy,

We too are using an evaluation method during most simulations that correlates to the students current clinical evaluation, as Sim time is part of clinical time.  I would also appreciate your rubric to review. 

Thanks so much and have a great day!


Wendeline J. Grbach, MSN, RN, CCRN, CLNC

Curriculum Developer for Simulation Education

UPMC Shadyside School of Nursing

Pittsburgh, PA

Picture of Joyce Howard
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Joyce Howard - Monday, May 2, 2011, 8:47 AM

Please forward a copy of your rubic with me.  We currently use a tool that was developed with a collaboration of a couple of Nursing schools in my city.   The tool includes: Assessment, Communication, Critical Thinking, Technical Skills, and Professional headings with objective points identified under each topic.  We use a Likert scale of 2-0.  Two (2) equals Satisfactory, one (1) equals Needs Improvement, and zero (0) equals unsatisfactory.  You can utilize this tool in in situations were you have a pass/fail or a grade method of evaluation of your students.  Of course, we also include a comment section also.  We evaluate the students as a group and not individually during simulation. Please send your rubic to 

Thank you.

Joyce Howard, MSN, RN

Picture of Erica Alexander
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Erica Alexander - Thursday, December 13, 2012, 12:09 AM
I know this original post is over a year old but I would be interested in your rubric as well. We are also working to develop a grading rubric for simulations.
Thank you.
Erica Alexander
Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing, Quincy, IL
Picture of Erin Rosfeld
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Erin Rosfeld - Monday, May 2, 2011, 11:05 AM

I would be interested in your rubric as well. We've created one for post simulation grading and evaluation of the scenario. It's not an evaluation of their performance, only of their evaluation of the simulation and their plan of care. We're considering grading the simulation performance itself, such as critical behaviors etc. You can email the rubric to

Many thanks!


Picture of Susan House
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Susan House - Monday, May 2, 2011, 1:19 PM
Please send a copy of the rubric to

Picture of Tim Hardy
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Tim Hardy - Monday, May 2, 2011, 4:23 PM

I would also be interested your rubric.


Picture of Nina Goddin
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Nina Goddin - Thursday, March 29, 2012, 3:14 PM
I am in the process of completing a project in the Nurse Educator track for my MSN and in the process of developing an evaluation tool for a simulation. We are encouraged to use a rubric and in my search have not found any applicable tools. The simulation is relevant to my students in the PN program where I teach and I'd love to integrate this technology as an adjunct to their clinical experience. I would sincerely appreciate if you would forward your rubric to help me in my teaching endeavors. You may email at:

Thank you for your consideration,

Nina Goddin, RNC-NIC
Clinical Instructor
Centura Institute
Orlando, FL 32778

Re: Grading in Simulation
by MICHELLE GILBERT - Friday, June 29, 2012, 10:28 PM

I know you made this comment over a year ago but I would be very interested in seeing your simulation rubric also.

Thank you
MIchelle Gilbert

Picture of Jessica Smith
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Jessica Smith - Thursday, August 30, 2012, 12:59 PM
Do you think you could possibly send me a copy of the rubric you use? We're a newer nursing facility and keep growing. We are thinking aboutgrading simulation but are unsure of exactly how to do so.
Picture of Laurie Pufpaff
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Laurie Pufpaff - Friday, September 21, 2012, 10:38 AM
I would love to see your rubric as well. We are trying to develop one. my email is Thank you!
Picture of JoAnne Raatz
Re: Grading in Simulation
by JoAnne Raatz - Friday, September 21, 2012, 11:32 AM

Would love to see the rubric also -    

thank you!

Picture of Linda shubert
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Linda shubert - Saturday, September 22, 2012, 5:48 AM
I would as well.

many thanks
Picture of Jo-Ann Cole
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Jo-Ann Cole - Thursday, December 13, 2012, 3:30 PM

Hi Kathy.  I know it's been a while but I would be interested in seeing your rubric as well.  We are looking at the possibility of grading physical assessment simulations for RN to BSN students.  Thank you.  Jo-Ann

Picture of kathee  long
Re: Grading in Simulation
by kathee long - Tuesday, February 12, 2013, 12:55 PM

We are starting a new nursing program and discussing grading students as well. Can you forward me a copy of the rubric you use? Thanks so much!

Picture of Donna Gloe
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Donna Gloe - Tuesday, April 30, 2013, 9:54 AM
Could you share your rubric with me?
Picture of Debbie Murphy
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Debbie Murphy - Wednesday, May 1, 2013, 7:26 AM
I am sorry this request comes well over a year since you posted. Apparently this is a popular topic. I would like to receive a copy of your rubric as well More importantly, I would like you to post again and let us know how it is going since you have a year or more of experience in grading your simulations. What have you learned in the process and have you made any changes to your procedures? Thank you. Debbie
Picture of Patti LeBlanc
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Patti LeBlanc - Saturday, February 21, 2015, 2:22 PM
I know this post is over 3 years old but wonder if you would share your rubric for evaluation of the simulation experience. I have been doing clinical with second year nursing students and just completed a simulation experience. However, we have no evaluation tool developed. I would like to do one and need some ideas.

Thank you so much.

Patti LeBlanc

Picture of andrea adams
Re: Grading in Simulation
by andrea adams - Thursday, April 4, 2019, 2:43 PM

I am interested in your rubric as well. 

Thank you in advance,

Picture of Jane Williams
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Jane Williams - Thursday, April 4, 2019, 5:41 PM
Hi Kathy,

Not sure if you are still in nursing education but if you are, would you mind sharing your rubric and guidelines for grading in simulation? 

Thank you for your time!

Jane Williams

California State University, Fullerton

Picture of elizabeth tipps
Re: Grading in Simulation
by elizabeth tipps - Monday, May 2, 2011, 5:22 PM
I would also love a copy of your rubric. I have been grading students but much of it has been weighted in prep work and debriefing. All ideas are helpful.
Picture of Kelley Mcafee
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Kelley Mcafee - Friday, June 8, 2012, 8:19 AM
Hello to All,
Our faculty has "created" a grading method using competencies for simulation. We are going to re-evaluate this method next week and would appreciate referencing other tools being used. One question that arises out of this that I could appreciate your feedback on is regarding this...
If you use simulation as a clinical experience and there is a grade associated with simulation, What assessment method is applied to the clinical experience and does this provide consistency in the system?

I look forward to your comments!

Please send any tools to:
Picture of Jean Eaton
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Jean Eaton - Friday, September 13, 2013, 7:54 PM
Hi Kelly,

I am also interested in the scoring rubric. My email address is:

Jean Eaton MSN/Ed, RN
Picture of Denise Maxwell
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Denise Maxwell - Monday, August 20, 2012, 4:06 PM

Would you please share your rubric?  I need to give points for our students' simulation experiences and would appreciate viewing what others have done.  I have just been using a general rubric per the student team to show QI from year to year; now I need to do something for individual students.

Thank you,

Denise Maxwell

Picture of Jessica Smith
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Jessica Smith - Thursday, August 30, 2012, 3:43 PM

I'm the lab coordinator at FSC we're trying to come up with a grading rubric for simulation based upon our student learning outcomes. We're also thinking of having different competency levels dependent upon what classes the students are in. Any ideas??

Picture of Sara Lewandowski
Re: Grading in Simulation
by Sara Lewandowski - Wednesday, April 24, 2019, 4:05 PM


I have 9 years experience in simulation and helped align our pre-licensure curriculum with simulation scenarios to reflect student learning outcomes found in respective courses. The tool I created was from our clinical evaluation tools which are used in the same course for clinical. These tools also reflect the terminology found on the Texas BON differentiated entry level competencies. Part of this grading included the fact that all students participated in debriefing. 

Picture of solange alzamora
Re: Grading in Simulation
by solange alzamora - Saturday, January 26, 2013, 4:25 AM
I am very interested to review the rubric grading system for simulation.
Please send sample to

We created a new curriculum and it is taking shape quite nicely. The more purposeful and meaningful the program is the more the students appreciate it.
Thank you again Kathy.