Framework for incorporating simulation into urology training

BJU Int. 2011 Mar;107(5):806-810. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2010.09563.x. Epub 2010 Sep 24.


Objectives: • Changes to working hours, new technologies and increased accountability have rendered the need for alternative training environments for urologists. • Simulation offers a promising arena for learning to take place in a safe, realistic setting. • Despite its benefits, the incorporation of simulation into urological training programmes remains minimal. • The current status and future directions of simulation for training in technical and non-technical skills are reviewed as they pertain to urology. • A framework is presented for how simulation-based training could be incorporated into the entire urological curriculum.

Materials and methods: • The literature on simulation in technical and non-technical skills training is reviewed, with a specific focus upon urology.

Results: • To fully integrate simulation into a training curriculum, its possibilities for addressing all the competencies required by a urologist must be realized. • At an early stage of training, simulation has been used to develop basic technical skills and cognitive skills, such as decision-making and communication. • At an intermediate stage, the studies focus upon more advanced technical skills learnt with virtual reality simulators. • Non-technical skills training would include leadership and could be delivered with in situ models. • At the final stage, experienced trainees can practise technical and non-technical skills in full crisis simulations situated within a fully-simulated operating rooms.

Conclusions: • Simulation can provide training in the technical and non-technical skills required to be a competent urologist. • The framework presented may guide how best to incorporate simulation into training curricula. • Future work should determine whether acquired skills transfer to clinical practice and improve patient care.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence*
  • Computer Simulation*
  • Education, Medical / methods
  • Education, Medical / organization & administration
  • Education, Medical / trends*
  • Humans
  • Urology / education*