Simulation Education Theory

  • Les R. BeckerEmail author
  • Belinda A. Hermosura
Part of the Comprehensive Healthcare Simulation book series (CHS)


Simulation-based educational methods are recognized as an established component of medical training for medical students, residents, and fellows; have been shown to be low-cost and cost-effective; and most recently have been linked to convincingly improved training outcomes for high-risk, low-frequency obstetrical emergencies. This chapter offers an overview of educational theory supporting simulation-based education (SBE) methods.

The core components of experiential learning theory, concrete experience, reflective observation, abstract conceptualization, and active experimentation drive simulation-based learning through the learning styles of diverging, assimilating, converging, and accommodating as learners’ kinesthetic and cognitive skills grow in the simulation space. Judicious application of fidelity in its many dimensions provides a basis for faculty to scaffold the growth of their learners.

Simulation provides a substrate for deliberate practice, a component of mastery learning, leading to expert performance as healthcare professionals engage in lifelong learning. In this chapter, we provide an overview of these topics and their interrelationships.


Simulation Experiential learning Fidelity Deliberate practice Mastery learning 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.MedStar Health, Simulation Training and Education Lab (SiTEL)Washington, DCUSA
  2. 2.Department of Emergency MedicineGeorgetown University School of MedicineWashington, DCUSA

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