This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Students' Perceived Learning Effectiveness: The Relationship between the Level of Fidelity in Nursing Simulation, Traditional Clinical Experiences, and the Learning Objectives




Gore, Teresa

Type of Degree



Education Foundation, Leadership, and Technology


There is an increase in the use and acceptance of simulation in nursing education. Conflicting data exists regarding the level of fidelity required for effective learning. With the increasing use of simulation in nursing education, simulation is replacing some of the traditional clinical experiences for students. There is a dearth of data comparing simulation and traditional clinical experiences. This is especially true for low-fidelity simulations. The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship of baccalaureate nursing students’ perceived learning effectiveness using the Clinical Learning Environments Comparison Survey (CLECS) of different levels of fidelity simulation based on the learning objectives, and traditional clinical experiences. The CLECS’s subscales after confirmatory factor analysis are communication, nursing leadership, and teaching-learning dyad. The null hypothesis is there is no relationship between the identified students’ perceived learning effectiveness subscale (communication, nursing leadership, and teaching-learning dyad) and the fidelity of the simulation. A convenience sample of 103 first semester baccalaureate nursing students enrolled in a required fundamental/assessment clinical course and 155 fifth semester baccalaureate nursing students enrolled in a required leadership clinical course participated in this study. The simulations and traditional clinical experiences were required clinical components of the courses. However, only students who provided informed consent and agreed to complete the required instruments were included in the study. A descriptive correlational design was used for this cross-sectional study to evaluate students’ perceptions after a simulation experience and the completion of the traditional clinical experiences. The CLECS tool for student perceived learning effectiveness was used for both clinical experiences. The null hypothesis was not retained for the subscales: communication, nursing leadership, and teaching-learning dyad depending on the objectives of the simulated clinical experience. However, the communication subscale showed tendency towards preference of traditional clinical experiences in meeting students perceived learning for communication.