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Learning With Laughter: Implementing Engaging Virtual Simulation During the COVID-19 Pandemic

  • Panepucci, Sharon
  • Roe, Elizabeth
  • Galbraith, Adrienne
  • Thornton, Tina
Published Article
Clinical Simulation in Nursing
International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Publication Date
Aug 23, 2021
DOI: 10.1016/j.ecns.2021.08.022
PMCID: PMC8487443
PubMed Central
  • Innovations in Simulation


Background The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the methods used to develop clinical judgment in the simulation setting. In many cases, virtual simulation has replaced face-to-face simulation but lack of interaction between the students and educators is a limitation. Sample Ninety-six prelicensure baccalaureate nursing students at a Midwestern university participated in the end-of-semester simulation as part of the course. Method Based on the review of aggregate standardized test results, a simulation scenario was developed using a synchronous online format with educators portraying nurses and patients using a fun approach. At three predetermined stopping points, students discussed further nursing actions which were performed by the educators, followed by debriefing at the end of the scenario. Results Simulation evaluation as part of routine systematic simulation program assessment indicated students perceived both pauses for discussion during the scenario and debriefing at the end were valuable in promoting their learning. Conclusion This project is consistent with research which found virtual simulation enhances student learning and clinical judgment. The positive perception of students about the use of humor through implementation of the simulation scenario was consistent with current research related to student engagement and motivation to participate.

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