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Varying levels of fidelity on psychomotor skill attainment: a CORTRAK product assessment
  1. Laura Gonzalez1,
  2. Annette M Bourgault1,
  3. Lillian Aguirre2
  1. 1 College of Nursing, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida, USA
  2. 2 Orlando Regional Medical Center, Orlando, Florida, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Laura Gonzalez, University of Central Florida, College of Nursing, Orlando, FL 32816, USA; laura.gonzalez{at}


Background A task trainer is defined as a model that represents a part or region of the human body such as an arm and an abdomen… generally used to support procedural skills training. Concepts for consideration when selecting a task trainer include fidelity and cognitive load. Insertion of small - bore FTs in acutely ill patients continues to be a high - risk skill. The most frequent complication is insertion of the F T into the pulmonary system, which can lead to pneumothorax, pneumonitis and death. Training consists of placing the FT under electromagnetic visual assistance in a task trainer.

Objective This study describes assessment of two task trainers that are used to simulate assisted feeding tube (FT) insertion. Simulation is an excellent approach to close the learning gap and ensure competency. Study selection: This study used a prospective observational design. Participants (n=20) were registered nurses considered to be superusers. They were randomly assigned to order of the task trainer.

Findings and conclusions The findings suggest the learners preferred the low-fidelity task trainer. The clear Anatomical Box scored higher overall (18.35/21) when compared with the human-like task trainer (16.5/21). A higher fidelity task trainer may seem attractive; however, with a lens to cognitive load theory, it may hinder the early learning process. Fidelity requirements vary depending on the training task. Recommendations from this study include: initial instruction should focus on the psychomotor steps for the FT insertion process. The high-fidelity human torso is recommended for performance, final competency and ongoing competency maintenance.

  • feeding tubes
  • tube placement determination
  • electromagnetics
  • task trainer
  • fidelity
  • cognitive load
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  • Contributors LG is the primary author (lead) for this manuscript. It has not been submitted elsewhere. Coauthor AMB contributed to the methodology and background. Coauthor LA is responsible for clinical nurse subject matter and work on hospital processes.

  • Funding This study was supported by Halyard Sales, LLC (HYH), Alpharetta, Georgia, USA.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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