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Crit Care Nurs Clin North Am. 2001 Mar;13(1):93-103.

Using simulation to teach critical thinking skills. You can't just throw the book at them.

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Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies, Washington, DC 20007, USA.


Critical thinking is essential in critical care practice. How to define, measure, and teach thinking are subjects of debate with no clearly proven method for doing so. Simulation as a teaching strategy appears to hold great promise for teaching critical thinking. Sophisticated simulators allow real patient situations to be replicated in a safe environment for practice and learning. Research is needed to support this theory. Dr. Gaba, a pioneer in the use of simulation, said "No industry in which human lives depend on the skilled performance of responsible operators has waited for unequivocal proof of the benefit of simulation before embracing it." Embracing simulation in academic and clinical education is appropriate, but efforts must continue to evaluate this strategy.

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