Table 2

Advantages and disadvantages of different types of simulators and patients supporting simulation-based learning

AdvantagesDisadvantages
Simulators/manikins
This can include part task trainers virtual reality and haptic simulators, integrated simulators including instructor-driven or model-driven simulators
Compliant
Can be set to demonstrate physical signs
Can be set to alter course of simulation in response to trainee performance
Allows repeated practice in a safe environment—develops novice to expert
Allows multiple trainees to experience the same learning experience
Allows instant debrief
Limited ability for conversation
High fidelity versions require skilled personnel to manage
Simulated patientsCompliant
Can repeat a history from real encounter
Can adapt to build the simulation and alter course of simulation in response to trainee performance
Allows multiple trainees to experience the same learning experience
Allows instant debrief
Students may feel less able to make mistakes

May not have physical signs
Real patientsReal history
Real clinical signs
Allows instant debrief
Poorly compliant
Rapidly resolving clinical signs
Inappropriate for large numbers of trainee to examine
Trainees feel anxious about making mistakes or looking less competent