Track

Research Proposal / Online Learning

Proposal Abstract

This research explores the effect of simulation on graduate nursing student learning in an online distance education program. Simulation research has shown increased student confidence and knowledge after participation in activities that promote critical reasoning skills and approximate real-life situations. Most online courses accomplish this through asynchronous case study forum discussions. Faculty noted decreasing forum participation, and instituted online simulations to apply course concepts and improve critical thinking skills. This panel session showcases various online simulation formats, technical platforms, and presents student reactions and outcome data. Participants will also generate ideas for implementation of simulation activities in their courses.

Proposal Description

This research answers the question: What is the effect of implementing simulation activities in a graduate online learning environment on student satisfaction and Community of Inquiry (COI) scores? Frontier Nursing University (FNU) espouses a COI model of teaching based upon teaching, social, and cognitive presences. Traditionally faculty rely on asynchronous forum discussions to address these presences and provide learning activities that promote critical thinking. Faculty noted diminishing student participation in these activities and sought to implement novel student activities to apply course concepts while improving critical thinking skills. Simulation improves these skills when activities approximate realistic situations, so faculty instituted online student-to-student, student-to-faculty, and student-to-standardized patient simulations as course assignments. Student evaluation data and course COI scores were analyzed with quantitative descriptive and qualitative content analysis. Student comments supported simulations as valuable to improving critical thinking skills in a safe yet life-like environment, positively influencing the acquisition of advanced communication skills, and as being valuable to learning in the distance learning environment. Course COI scores reflect satisfactory means in all three presences. Our work supports evidence that simulations enhance student learning and acquisition of professional roles, and may be applied in various forms across online courses in other disciplines to provide face-to-face critical thinking opportunities and to promote critical reasoning skills. This panel will present different online simulation formats, share “lessons learned,” and discuss audience feedback about online simulations. Exemplar student simulations will be shared to illustrate various methodologies. Several different technological platforms for delivering online simulations will be described and demonstrated, along with pros and cons for student engagement, learning, and assessment. Questions will be encouraged throughout the presentation and audience members will use worksheets to begin to design a simulation for use in their own online courses.

Session Format

Panel Session

Location

Room 2

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

 
Mar 29th, 3:00 PM Mar 29th, 3:45 PM

Simulation in a Graduate Online Learning Environment

Room 2

This research explores the effect of simulation on graduate nursing student learning in an online distance education program. Simulation research has shown increased student confidence and knowledge after participation in activities that promote critical reasoning skills and approximate real-life situations. Most online courses accomplish this through asynchronous case study forum discussions. Faculty noted decreasing forum participation, and instituted online simulations to apply course concepts and improve critical thinking skills. This panel session showcases various online simulation formats, technical platforms, and presents student reactions and outcome data. Participants will also generate ideas for implementation of simulation activities in their courses.