Towards more authentic simulation-based learning – Nursing students’ experiences

Mari Helena Salminen-Tuomaala, Elina Leppäkangs, Sami Perälä


Background: Nursing students need opportunities for authentic learning in contexts that strongly resemble real-life clinical settings.
Objective: This qualitative study describes final year nursing students’ experiences of simulation authenticity and presents development needs proposed by the students. The study aimed at producing knowledge that can be used by educators and technology specialists to develop simulation pedagogy for acute nursing.
Methods: Eleven final-year nursing students specializing in acute nursing (intensive care and in- and out-of-hospital emergency care) responded to a questionnaire with four open questions in December 2019. Inductive content analysis was used to analyze the data.
Results: The students stressed the importance of their own preparations and living into the nursing role with proper briefing from an expert teacher, supported by a realistic representation of the setting using real equipment, actors, visualization and other multisensory cues.
Conclusions: Students’ subjective experience of authenticity depends on many factors; preparation, awareness of objectives, support from the facilitator and the level of environmental fidelity. Simulations, which reach a reasonable degree of authenticity in the students’ experience, can be considered an effective form of authentic learning.

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Clinical Nursing Studies
ISSN 2324-7940(Print)   ISSN 2324-7959(Online)

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