Design and plan learning activities and/or programmes of study
Appropriate methods for teaching, learning and assessing in the subject area in the subject area and at the level of the academic programme
Simulation in higher education refers to the use of simulated or virtual environments to help students learn and practice new skills and knowledge. This can involve using computer-based simulations, mock-up models, or other types of replicas or simulations of real-world situations or scenarios. The goal of simulation in education is to provide students with the opportunity to apply and practice new concepts and skills in a safe and controlled setting, without the risks or consequences of working with real patients or clients. Simulation can be used in a variety of fields, including healthcare, business, engineering, and more, and can be an effective way to facilitate experiential learning and promote critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
Mimicking real-life situations creates a safe space for learning. Simulation is an educational tool or device with which the learner physically interacts to mimic real life. This representation of a real-life situation or event allows learners to alter or adjust aspects of reality in a way that facilitates learning and practice. Examples of simulation include: role play, standardised patients and immersive interactions with virtual objects.
Simulated experiences help students develop complex skills including:
All simulation is effective
Simulation works when you use:
Simulation supports the development of expertise through scaffolded learning tasks.
The development of expertise is thought to be a result of a large amount of experiential practice. Ideally, this practice takes place in the real world, but for a lot of higher education degrees, this isn't tenable, safe, or realistic. Simulation allows students to engage in practice-based experiences in safe, iterative, and scaffolded ways.
High confidence in evidence presented for the effectiveness of simulation.
In Chernikova et al. (2020) the primary studies were assessed for publication bias. The number of studies analysed is high and confidence intervals are acceptable. There is high heterogeneity, however, the effect size is massive (g = 0.85) meaning any kind of bias doesn't really change the story. Three different domains of literature were assessed, so the result is generalisable.
The more you do simulation the more massive the effect is.
Chernikova, O., Heitzmann, N., Stadler, M., Holzberger, D., Seidel, T., & Fischer, F. (2020). Simulation-Based Learning in Higher Education: A Meta-Analysis. Review of Educational Research, 90(4), 499–541. https://doi.org/10.3102/0034654320933544
Cook, D. A., Hatala, R., Brydges, R., Zendejas, B., Szostek, J. H., Wang, A. T., Erwin, P. J., & Hamstra, S. J. (2011). Technology-enhanced simulation for health professions education: a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 306(9), 978–988. https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.2011.1234