Training the Trainer: Empowering Simulation Facilitators to Succeed

Training the Trainer: Empowering Simulation Facilitators to Succeed

By Roxanne Blanford


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When American educator Malcolm Shepherd Knowles (1913 -1997) developed his theories on adult learning (Knowles’ 4 Principles of Andragogy), he had absolutely no way of foreseeing how his theories might someday apply to modern-day simulation training.


According to Knowles, adult learners generally achieve a higher rate of knowledge retention when they

  • are actively and personally engaged in the learning process
  • have a clear understanding of the learning objectives
  • can process what they learn relative to experience and cultural histories
  • are intimately involved in a cooperative learning environment with constructive feedback


Adults who choose to pursue education through simulation derive substantial learning benefit when they

  • receive experiential, hands-on training
  • are pre-briefed on objectives and anticipated outcomes
  • have the opportunity to learn from mistakes and evaluate their behaviors
  • are debriefed through constructive feedback, expert guidance, and open dialogue

Clearly,  adult learning theory (based on Knowles' concepts of how adults learn best) is very much attuned to the core principles behind healthcare simulation training.

However, before the modalities of simulation-based medical education can turn adult learners into skilled professionals, facilitators require the best resources, tools, and conceptual knowledge to help them in developing competent clinicians.

Enter the INACSL- CAE Healthcare Clinical Simulation Fellowship.

Based on the "Standards of Best Practice: Simulation SM" (from the International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning), the co-developed INACSL-CAE Healthcare Clinical Simulation Fellowship offers new and existing simulation educators, program facilitators and healthcare trainers convenient access to peer support, instruction protocols, and insightful knowledge.

The learning environments are experiential and interactive by design. The curriculum includes seminars, discussion groups, plenary sessions and “hands-on” activities to deliver quality course content at various on-site locations worldwide, and/or online. 

The INACSL-CAE Healthcare Simulation Fellowship offers healthcare professionals the opportunity to design, facilitate, and debrief a Simulated Clinical Experience (SCE) Participants come away with a mastery of how to properly implement simulation techniques into their healthcare training programs.