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94 Simulation scenario beta-testing: increasing the fidelity
  1. C Sivakumar1,
  2. S Taylor1,
  3. K Meznikova1,
  4. S Ahmed1,
  5. S Makwana1,
  6. S Kadri1,
  7. A Gopal2
  1. 1Hull York Medical School, UK
  2. 2Hull Institute of Learning and Simulation, UK


Background Undergraduate medical students from the Hull York Medical School are taught to use simulation1 to create and run a high fidelity simulated scenario to teach their peer group about managing simple medical emergencies at Hull Institute of Learning and Simulation through a student-selected component.2 An innovative fast feedback loop was used by students to create, test and improve the scenario over a short time period (akin to software beta-testing). The optimum number of cycles necessary to produce a scenario of strong fidelity and value to the learner was identified.

Methodology The scenario was tested on five occasions, each with a fresh participant. User feedback from post-scenario questionnaire quantitatively and qualitatively assessed educational value and fidelity to identify improvements for the scenario. This yielded a scenario independently assessed on day 5 to be of professional quality and value. Statistical analysis was performed on feedback questionnaires (Mann-Whitney U test), testing for gross global improvement across all numerical domains of the questionnaire (relevance, effectiveness and quality of the pre-brief, scenario and debrief) and comparing them between participants.

Outcomes There was a significant difference between the first(5.3 ± 0.7) and second cycle (8.7 ± 0.5) (p = 0.0002), between cycles 2–3 (9.7 ± 0.5) (p = 0.003) and 3–4 (8.2 ± 1.1) (p = 0.002). However, cycles 4–5 (8.7 ± 0.7) did not show a significant difference in fidelity (p = 0.2). This and qualitative feedback suggests that three cycles are sufficient to achieve a sufficiently high level of fidelity and boost instructor competence.

Conclusion Scenario beta-testing is an excellent method of increasing scenario fidelity and providing high-yield tutor experience, especially if tutors are simulation-naive, and three cycles is suggested as an optimal.


  1. Gopal A, Purva M. A pilot of a simulation scenario scripting workshop for medical students: exposing students to teaching and learning using simulation-based medical education. BMJ STEL 2014;1(Suppl 1):A1–A88.

  2. Fent G, Gopal A, Purva M. Simulation based medical education as a student selected component for medical students. BMJ STEL 2015;1(Suppl 2):A1–A67.

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