- •Online virtual simulation is comparable to traditional simulation methods.
- •Students reported that virtual patients were more realistic than standard actor patients.
- •Students reported increased engagement with learning.
Virtual reality technology can range from bedside learning to computerized tools accessed exclusively online; yet there is little evidence of the effectiveness of online virtual simulation for teaching diagnostic reasoning to health care providers. To address this gap, an examination of virtual simulation encounters in the online classroom was undertaken to inform education of a variety of health care providers, including nurse practitioners, registered nurses, and physicians.
Arskey and O'Malley's (2005) framework was the methodology used to conduct the scoping review.
Twelve studies published between 2008 and 2015 were identified from a search of 14 databases. The study sample included physicians and medical students (seven), baccalaureate nursing students (two), associate degree nursing students (one), and providers from other fields such as pharmacists, physiotherapists, sports medicine, forensics, and veterinarians.
Online virtual simulation was comparable or superior to traditional simulation methods where increased engagement with learning occurred in a safe environment with convenient access.
To read this article in full you will need to make a payment
Purchase one-time access:Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
One-time access price info
- For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
- For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'
Subscribe:Subscribe to Clinical Simulation In Nursing
Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
Already an online subscriber? Sign in
Register: Create an account
Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect
- Clinical decision making: A pilot e-learning study.The Clinical Teacher. 2013; 10: 51-55https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1743-498X.2012.00629.x
- How can educators use simulation applications to teach and assess surgical judgment?.Academic Medicine: Journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges. 2012; 87: 934-941https://doi.org/10.1097/ACM.0b013e3182583248
- Teaching diagnostic reasoning: Transitioning from a live to a distance accessible online classroom in an Adult Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Program.Journal of Nursing Education and Practice. 2013; 3https://doi.org/10.5430/jnep.v3n12p125
- Scoping studies: Towards a methodological framework.International Journal of Social Research Methodology. 2005; 8: 19-32https://doi.org/10.1080/1364557032000119616
- A collective vision for post-graduate medical education in Canada.2012 (Retrieved from)
- Educational strategies to promote clinical diagnostic reasoning.The New England Journal of Medicine. 2006; 355: 2217-2225https://doi.org/10.1056/NEJMra054782
- Development and pilot of case manager: A virtual-patient experience for veterinary students.Journal of Veterinary Medical Education. 2014; 41: 225-232https://doi.org/10.3138/jvme.1113-151R1
- Registered nurses education in Canada statistics 2013-2014.Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing, Ottawa, ON2015
- Nurse practitioner education in Canada national framework of guiding principles & essential components.2012 (Retrieved from)
- Computerized virtual patients in health professions education: A systematic review and meta-analysis.Academic Medicine: Journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges. 2010; 85: 1589-1602https://doi.org/10.1097/ACM.0b013e3181edfe13
- Information and communication technology to facilitate learning for students in the health professions: Current uses, gaps, and future directions.Online Learning. 2014; 18 ([Electronic version])
- Virtual worlds in nursing education: A synthesis of the literature.Journal of Nursing Education. 2013; 52: 391-400https://doi.org/10.3928/01484834-20130610-03
- The future vision of simulation in healthcare: Simulation in Healthcare.The Journal of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare. 2007; 2: 126-135
- The use of virtual patients to assess the clinical skills and reasoning of medical students: Initial insights on student acceptance.Medical Teacher. 2009; 31: 739-742https://doi.org/10.1080/01421590903126489
- Using virtual patients to teach medical ethics, medical law and medical professionalism.Medical Teacher. 2012; 34: 674-675https://doi.org/10.3109/0142159X.2012.689450
- Effectiveness of a virtual patient program in a psychiatry clerkship.Medical Education. 2012; 46https://doi.org/10.1111/medu.12020
- Exploring nursing students' decision-making skills whilst in a Second Life clinical simulation laboratory.Nurse Education Today. 2011; 31: 699-704https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2010.03.010
- The replacement of “paper” cases by interactive online virtual patients in problem-based learning.Medical Teacher. 2009; 31: 752-758
- Virtual-world hospital simulation for real-world disaster response: Design and validation of a virtual reality simulator for mass casualty incident management.Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 2014; 77: 315-321https://doi.org/10.1097/TA.0000000000000308
- Virtual reality-based assessment of clinical reasoning ability.Medical Education. 2014; 48: 1123https://doi.org/10.1111/medu.12559
- The effectiveness of simulation activities on the cognitive abilities of undergraduate third-year nursing students: A randomised control trial.Journal of Clinical Nursing. 2012; 21: 3475-3484https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2702.2012.04257.x
- Death is not always a failure: Outcomes from implementing an online virtual patient clinical case in palliative care for family medicine clerkship.Medical Education Online. 2013; 18: 22711
- Evaluation of virtual reality training using affect.International Journal on E-Learning. 2012; 11: 209-218
- Computer-based or human patient simulation-based case analysis: Which works better for teaching diagnostic reasoning skills?.Nursing Education Perspectives. 2014; 35: 14-18
Published online: June 07, 2016
© 2016 International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.