A realistic evaluation of an innovative simulation and skills programme to replace placement hours

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

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Due to placement pressures, Northumbria University created a programme of events to replace 150 clinical practice hours with simulation: ‘SkillsFest’. June/July 2022 saw 500 second-year nursing students undertake a 4-week simulated learning programme consisting of skills stations, skills assessment, simulation events, Virtual Reality, and other technology-enhanced learning platforms. The aim was to ensure students had the skills required for progression to year 3, they were able to make up hours and were supported in their assessment of practice.
Methodology and Methods
A research project was approved, using a realistic evaluation approach, to explore and examine the use of the interventions and to evaluate the second-year students, academic staff, Academic Assessors', Practice Assessors’ and Practice Partners’ perspectives of the ‘SkillsFest’ programme and the use of simulated practice and technology enhanced learning pedagogies in replacing clinical practice hours. 190 surveys have been received to date, and interim results of the online surveys have produced some interesting data which is being analysed. The coding and initial thematic analysis is being completed independently and concurrently by the research team before being shared to triangulate results and increase rigour.
Early Results and Way Forward
Although data analysis is still ongoing, initial results demonstrate that there are benefits to continuing the SkillsFest approach. It is anticipated that the data will lead to a better understanding of how simulation can inform and contribute to placement assessment. It will also allow access to the views of students and practitioners and whether they see value in this programme to support practice assessment and student learning. Additionally, useful information may emerge which will enable education providers to understand the key barriers to using simulated practices to support placement assessment and provide valuable insight into how simulated and technology-enhanced practices can be integrated into future nursing programmes.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 5 Dec 2022
EventRCN education conference 2023 -
Duration: 25 Apr 202326 Apr 2023


ConferenceRCN education conference 2023


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