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Nursing Simulation Lab

As part of the Marjorie K. Unterberg nursing curriculum, students are required to participate in simulation.

Simulation is the art and science of re-creating and mimicking real life clinical environments  to assist nursing students with experiential learning related to prioritizing,  demonstrating procedures, decision-making, and critical thinking skills.

Simulation is a technique, not a technology, to amplify real experiences with guided practices, immersive in nature, that evokes or replicates substantial aspects of the real world in a fully interactive fashion.

Simulation picks up where the classroom leaves off. It makes the classroom experience come alive. Students can refine their individual and team skills well before touching a real patient.

Simulation is unique in that it fits all types of learning styles. Students are actively engaged, and it helps students to  build mental models. It provides for curricular integration, repetitive practice, multiple learning styles, clinical variations, and range of difficulty level progression.


Prior to the simulation, students are provided with a patient assignment and objectives. They also receive a Situation Background Assessment Recommendation (SBAR) nursing report on the patient that they are about to provide care for. They complete an online virtual simulation activity, evaluate the electronic health record of the patient and complete other appropriate readings and Assessment Technologies Institute (ATI) active learning templates.


Students also participate in reflective learning by facilitated debriefing of scenarios and video feedback.

Photo of Instructor and Students during a Nursing Simulation Laboratory session

Benefits of Simulation

  • Simulation creates a realistic clinical environment where active learning can occur.
  • Simulation uses multi modal learning: it is visual, auditory, cognitive, and psychomotor in nature.
  • Simulation provides no risk to patient safety.
  • Simulation is immersive and experiential; errors can be reviewed and students can learn from them in a positive way.
  • Simulation increases student confidence and lowers student anxiety in their first experiences caring for another person.
  • Simulation provides a much deeper understanding of the subject matter, engages students in different roles, and adds aspects of critical thinking as patient status changes.
  • Simulation allows for experimentation and error.
  • Simulation is implemented in alignment with nursing curriculum.
  • Clinical skills acquired transfer directly to improved clinical care and improved patient outcomes.