College of Nursing and Health Sciences Simulation & Clinical Learning Center Hosts Canadian Alliance of Nurse Educators

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – That first blast of Arctic air may not make it down to the Coastal Bend for months, but researchers visiting from Canada were on the Island University’s campus last week. 

Dr. Julie Fomenko, Director of the Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi College of Nursing and Health Sciences (CONHS) Simulation & Clinical Learning Center, and Dr. Mary Jane Hamilton, Principal Investigator on the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Veterans Building and Strengthening Nursing grant, collaborated to bring a team from the Canadian Alliance of Nurse Educators Using Simulation, aka CAN-Sim, to campus August 21-23.  The Canadian team trained Island University nursing faculty in the creation and utilization of simulation technologies in nursing education. 

The sessions were held at the simulation lab and clinical learning site located on the second floor of Island Hall. CAN-Sim founding members Dr. Jane Tyerman from the University of Ottawa and Dr. Marian Luctkar-Flude, represented Queens University, guided CONHS faculty in a two-and-a-half-day training event. Working together, they created a simulation game consisting of two scenarios intended to teach nursing students about caring for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These modules will be interactive learning tools for A&M-Corpus Christi students and will be submitted to CAN-Sim for inclusion in their acclaimed simulation laboratory.

 After selecting a scenario, identifying the learning outcomes, mapping decision points, and writing the script, CONHS participants used Go-Pro cameras to film scenarios. Once filming was complete, games were created. These finished products offer students the opportunity to see the patient from the point of view of the nurse, make decisions – which may be either right or wrong – and then receive immediate feedback about the decision that they chose which helps reinforce learning. 

Underwritten by a grant from the HRSA Nurse Education, Practice, Quality and Retention-Veterans Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program, this training is directly related to A&M-Corpus Christi’s goals of scholarship, research and creative activity. This training is also beneficial as it creates future international research opportunities. Virtual simulations of this type ensure Island University CONHS nursing students receive state-of-the-art technology training that will make them competitive hires in nursing jobs anywhere in the world.