Structured Debriefing and Students' Clinical Judgment Abilities in Simulation

Bette Mariani, Mary Ann Cantrell, Colleen Meakim, Patricia Prieto, Kristina T. Dreifuerst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

71 Scopus citations


Background: Debriefing is a critical component of clinical simulation, yet there are limited studies that demonstrate the outcomes of debriefing on learners' clinical judgment. Method: Using the Lasater Clinical Judgment Rubric, this mixed-method study examined the effects of structured debriefing after 2 clinical simulation experiences on 86 junior-level baccalaureate nursing students' clinical judgment. Debriefing for Meaningful Learning© was the method used for the structured debriefing sessions. Results: The mean clinical judgment scores of the intervention group were higher and improved more over time compared with the mean scores of those in the control group; however, the differences were not statistically significant. Conclusions: Data generated from focus group interviews suggest that students perceived the structured debriefing sessions as being learner-focused discussions that provided a holistic approach that included a review of knowledge, technical skills, and their reactions and emotions about the learning experiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e147-e155
JournalClinical Simulation in Nursing
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2013


  • Baccalaureate nursing students
  • Clinical judgment
  • Debriefing
  • Debriefing for meaningful learning
  • Health sciences reasoning test
  • Lasater clinical judgment rubric
  • Simulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Education
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)

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    Mariani, B., Cantrell, M. A., Meakim, C., Prieto, P., & Dreifuerst, K. T. (2013). Structured Debriefing and Students' Clinical Judgment Abilities in Simulation. Clinical Simulation in Nursing, 9(5), e147-e155.