Development and Evaluation of the Simulation Learning Effectiveness Inventory

Friday, 25 July 2014

Shiah-Lian Chen, PhD, RN1
Tsai-Wei Huang, PhD, RN2
I-Chen Liao, MSN, RN2
(1)Department of Nursing, National Taichung University of Science and Technology, Taichung, Taiwan
(2)Department of Nursing, Hungkuang University, Taichung, Taiwan

Purpose: High fidelity simulators help nursing students learn complex patient care. Yet, reliable instruments measuring learning outcomes are scant. The purpose of the study was to develop and evaluate psychometric properties of the Simulation Learning Effectiveness Inventory.

Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted. A purposive sample of 505 nursing students who had taken a simulation course was recruited from department of nursing of a university in central Taiwan. The study was conducted in two phases. In Phase I, question items were developed and the preliminary psychometric properties of the inventory were evaluated using exploratory factor analysis. Phase II was conducted to evaluate the reliability and validity of the finalized inventory using confirmatory factor analysis.

Results: The results of both exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis showed that the instrument contained seven factors, named course content, resource, clinical ability, debriefing, deep approach, confidence, and collaboration. In the exploratory factor analysis, the seven-factor solution with 34 items explained 71.25% of the total variance. However, two items were deleted because of fitting poorly to the data in confirmatory factor analysis.  A further second-order analysis showed comparable fits (preparation, process, and outcome) between a three second-order factor and the seven first-order factors. Internal consistency was adequate with a Cronbach alpha ranging 0.82-0.91 and composite reliability ranging 0.80-0.91. Convergent and discriminant validities were also supported by confirmatory factor analysis.

Conclusion: Simulation teaching is more helpful than traditional teaching methods in developing higher level practicing skills. The Simulation Learning Effectiveness Inventory is a reliable and valid instrument. The instrument is helpful in building the evidence-based knowledge of the effect of simulation teaching on students’ learning outcomes.