Date of Conferral
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
It has become progressively difficult to find suitable clinical placement for nursing students. To help meet this need, local schools of nursing are turning to high-fidelity simulation manikins to substitute for clinical experience. There is a lack of research that explores recently graduated nurses' perceptions about the efficacy of simulation experiences. Guided by the constructivist theory, this qualitative case study identified how recent RN graduates viewed simulation experiences and whether associate's-degree RN program graduates and bachelor's-program RN graduates viewed simulation differently. Nine recent graduates participated in individual face-to-face interviews. The data were coded and grouped into 5 major themes in order of frequency: (a) environmental and technical factors, which included factors such as equipment working and videotaping; (b) preparation for nursing tasks, referred to assessments, procedures, and emergency situations; (c) human factors, such as the importance of the instructor, other students participation, and working in groups; (d) communication, which included communication with doctors and patients among others; and (e) caliber of the equipment, which was referred to by the level of fidelity of the manikin. On comparison of the codes and themes, the perceptions of the bachelor's- degree participants were similar to the perception of the associate's-degree participants. A white paper, that identified the items the recent RN graduates perceived as valuable, was created. This white paper can be used to begin dialogue that may allow schools of nursing to increase the effectiveness of the simulation experience or validate its applicability in the real world setting. This study may contribute to positive social change by inspiring faculty of local schools of nursing to re-evaluate their simulation laboratory experiences for efficacy and applicability to real world nursing.