The essentials of debriefing in simulation learning: a concept analysis

Nurs Educ Perspect. 2009 Mar-Apr;30(2):109-14.


Debriefing is essential element of simulation; however, practices vary greatly. Common elements include critique, correction, and evaluation of student performance and discussion of the experience. Learning occurs in simulation through contextual task training and repetition, but significant learning occurs when deep insight is made explicit through reflection during debriefing. The value of the student's learning is in the student's ability to engage in reflection that translates into actionable knowledge. Facilitating debriefing emphasizing reflection is an essential competency, yet little research and resources are available to guide best practices in debriefing. This article analyzes the concept of debriefing and identifies essential components. Examples that demonstrate defining attributes of debriefing are included. This work supports the identification of best practices and future research agendas to enable nurse educators to master the knowledge and strategies needed to provide students with significant learning during simulation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Education, Nursing*
  • Humans
  • Judgment
  • Manikins*
  • Problem-Based Learning / methods*
  • Thinking
  • United States