Rapid Communication| Volume 77, P6-12, April 2023

The Development and Pilot Testing of Immersive Virtual Reality Simulation Training for Prelicensure Nursing Students: A Quasi-Experimental Study

Published:February 25, 2023DOI:


      • Strategies to optimize learning, engage learners and ensure competency in nurses
      • Scores for the IVR training group were significantly higher for total performance
      • Focus group themes identified that IVR was realistic and provided knowledge


      Nursing schools struggle to increase enrollments due to insufficient faculty and limitations in clinical site placements. New strategies must be employed to optimize learning, engage learners, and provide methods to ensure competency in future nursing graduates. A convenience sample of junior-level prelicensure nursing students (n = 48) were assigned to the immersive virtual reality (VR) group (n = 24) or the hospital-based group (n = 24). This mixed-methods quasi-experimental pilot study examined the effectiveness of an immersive VR simulation training program to replace pediatric clinical practice. The intervention group participated in immersive VR. The control group received the usual inpatient clinical training. Both groups then completed a traditional in-person simulation to compare performance outcomes. Performance scores for the immersive VR training group were significantly higher for total performance compared to the hospital-based training group. These preliminary results offer promise and demonstrate the potential of VR in the future of nursing education.


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