Don’t Forget the Humanity

Simulation-based education and training are truly awesome. Think about it…

As an educator, you get the opportunity to share in real-time student success. If the individual or team went through the scenario and performed great, let them know! What a great feeling it is to have students know that they did a wonderful job.

In healthcare education, there’s the technology aspect and the “cool” factor of using patient simulators and other products. There’s an element of special effects including the use of fluids in whatever situation that your scenario calls for. And don’t forget, the controlled chaos and noise that happens in a simulation lab setting. For Emergency Medical Services and critical care scenarios, the more simulated blood and guts, the “cooler” the experience.

While exciting, the simulation experience can also be a very humbling experience for learners. Perhaps they feel let down or had a not-so-great performance. Maybe the person is dealing with some issues that you aren’t aware of.

In training people how to heal, treat and manage complex medical issues, we can sometimes become lost in our own expectations. In healthcare education, there are many procedures, treatment protocols, drug titrations, and so on that professionals experience and need to learn. In my previous post where “everything is easier when you know it”, I can understand how it’s possible that we sometimes can forget what it was like to start out. Simulation-based experiences are a massive synthesis application where the learner takes the real-time information and performs intervention X, Y, Z, or all three and it can be a demanding situation for some people.

In simulation, we learn about new technologies, new patient simulators, virtual reality and all of the new features that teaching with technology offers. However, it’s important to never forget the humanity. Never forget about the learner. A successful experience includes a debriefing phase where the learners and educators can process what happened and why. The post-experience debrief is a vital part of the process to understand the context of where people are coming from, why they acted or performed in a certain way. The debrief provides an excellent opportunity to offer support, provide guidance and offer solutions. Demonstrating humanity in these teachable moments can show learners that they feel listened to.

We live in a fast-paced world where X, Y, and Z need to be done and there’s never enough time. What would it look like if you took a moment this week to make someone’s day? What does that look like? What difference could you make?

Be Awesome!


About the Author: Matthew Jubelius wants to change the future of people development, education, and training. He has championed the design, implementation, and evaluation of simulation-based education and training programs, including quality improvement measures for post-secondary institutions, private industry, and the federal government. Matthew can be reached through

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