Background The use of simulation has grown in prominence, but variation in the quality of provision has been reported, leading to calls for further research into the most effective instructional designs. Simulation Using Team Deliberate Practice (Sim-TDP) was developed in response. It combines the principles of simulation with deliberate practice, therefore, providing participants with opportunities to work towards well-defined goals, rehearse skills and reflect on performance whilst receiving expert feedback. This study aimed to compare the effects of Sim-TDP, versus the use of traditional simulation, on the performance of second year adult nursing students.
Methods Using a longitudinal quasi-experimental design, the effects of the two approaches were compared over a 1-year period. Sixteen groups, each containing an average of six participants, were randomised into an intervention arm (n=8) or comparison arm (n=8). Data collection took place at 3 monthly intervals, at which point the performance and time to complete the scenario objectives/tasks, as a team, were recorded and analysed using a validated performance tool.
Results The independent t-tests, comparing the performance of the groups, did not demonstrate any notable differences during the three phases. However, in phase 1, the independent t-tests suggested an improvement in the Sim-TDP participants’ time spent on task (t (14) = 5.12, p<0.001), with a mean difference of 7.22 min. The mixed analysis of covariance inferred that the use of the Sim-TDP led to an improvement, over time, in the participants’ performance (F(1, 5) = 12.91, p=0.016), and thus, an association between Sim-TDP and the enhanced performance of participants.
Conclusion The results suggest that Sim-TDP, potentially, optimised participant performance, while maximising the use of Simulation-based education (SBE) resources, such as simulation facilities and equipment. The model could be of practical benefit to nurse educators wishing to integrate SBE into their programmes.