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Simulators and the simulation environment: getting the balance right in simulation-based surgical education.

Research paper by Hazim H Sadideen, Karim K Hamaoui, Munir M Saadeddin, Roger R Kneebone

Indexed on: 01 Sep '12Published on: 01 Sep '12Published in: International Journal of Surgery



Abstract

Simulation occupies a central position in surgical education. It offers a safe environment for trainees to develop and improve their skills through sustained deliberate self-practice and appropriate feedback. This review explores the role of simulators and the simulation environment in light of educational theory to promote effective learning.Information was obtained from peer-reviewed publications, books and online material.A simplistic perspective frames simulation as a means of gaining technical skills on basic models by offering a safe alternative to carrying out procedures on real patients. Although necessary, that aspect of simulation requires greater depth to satisfy the growing demand for alternatives to traditional clinical learning. A more realistic view should frame simulation as a means to gaining mastery within a complex clinical world. In order to strike the balance on simulating an ideal clinical scenario, alignment of the simulator and the simulation environment in the appropriate context appears crucial.