Designing a Simulation CenterEnter This Course
The physical simulator laboratory space provides an environment where nursing students and instructors can participate in learning activities to integrate theory and practice, learn safe nursing and decision making skills, and develop critical thinking. Areas that closely replicate the clinical practice environment have been called a variety of names such as learning resource center, simulation learning center, or clinical simulation laboratory (CSL). Whatever this area is called, the center needs to be carefully planned to meet the needs of students and faculty as prescribed by the curriculum while still being flexible enough to support a variety of future healthcare learning activities, all within a reasonable and attainable budget.
The purpose of this course is to provide resources and activities that can aid in planning, creating, and maintaining a simulated setting that mimics any clinical setting where nurses practice. This is where the participant can find tools to help develop a needs assessment, design a CSL to meet these needs, and explore the resources necessary to equip and maintain the lab. Whether looking for ideas for an existing lab, planning renovations, or building a new facility you can find ideas and resources within this course.
- Calculate the amount of space needed/available for simulation within their specific program.
- Discuss the types and uses of audio/visual (AV) and informational technology (IT) equipment in the CSL.
- Identify resources available to assist in CSL design.
- Identify actual and potential financial sources for simulation equipment.
- Justify the benefit vs. cost of simulation equipment.
- Identify funds needed to sustain the CSL.
- Identify faculty and administrative support needed for a CSL.
About the Author
Andrea Dodge Ackermann PhD, RN, CCRN is an Associate Professor of Nursing and Director of Simulation and Clinical Education at Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, NY. She has published her work with simulation in staff development as well as conducted research on learning outcomes using simulation in undergraduate nursing education. She also works as a consultant to health care facilities and nursing programs in designing a simulation center and integrating simulation into staff development and undergraduate nursing curriculum.