Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
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Gamification of simulation teaching delivery

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-12-06, 14:53 authored by M Hamza, K Kavanagh, B Keane, J Condren, A Hennessy

Aim Evidence from recent decades establishing the effectiveness of simulation based medical education (SBME) is widespread. While outcomes relating to knowledge and skills acquisition are demonstrated frequently, some negative affective consequences are identified. Some of these detract from the educational potential of SBME. Use of “gamification” and judicious debriefing are solutions worth exploring. This study aims to produce a gamified learning environment for SBME with guided debriefing, and to assess the affective consequences on learners.


A literature review was conducted informing the study design. Gamified elements were introduced to weekly on-site simulation competition by using badges for weekly winners and individuals who excelled at aspects of the activity. Structured debriefing occurred after each activity. The validated Satisfaction with Simulation Experience Scale (SSES) evaluated learners’ perceptions of the activity in domains relating to debrief and reflection, clinical reasoning, and clinical learning, eliciting important affective responses regarding learner comfort and satisfaction. Paired t-test analysis was used.

Results Responses showed a statistically significant increase in satisfaction in several domains in the debrief and reflection category, particularly in relation to ease and comfort during the debrief. Responses relating to clinical reasoning and learning also showed significantly increased satisfaction.

Conclusion Negative consequences of SBME arising from lack of psychological safety can detract from learner engagement. We have shown “gamification” with guided debriefing can improve affective outcomes.



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Published Citation

Hamza M, Kavanagh K, Keane B, Condren J, Hennessy A. Gamification of simulation teaching delivery. Ir Med J. 2022;115(6):613

Publication Date

30 June 2022


Irish Medical Association


  • Published Version (Version of Record)