Deliberate practice involves attention, rehearsal and repetition and leads to new knowledge or skills that can later be developed into more complex knowledge and skills. Although other factors such as intelligence and motivation affect performance, practice is necessary if not sufficient for acquiring expertise (Campitelli & Gobet, 2011).
Practice greatly increases the likelihood that students will permanently remember new information (Anderson, 2008).
Practice increases student facility or automaticity (learning to apply elements of knowledge automatically, without reflection). Automaticity is usually only achieved through extensive rehearsal and repetition. Automaticity frees up students cognitive resources to handle more challenging tasks (Brown & Bennett, 2002; Moors & De Houwer, 2006).
When students practice solving problems, they increase their ability to transfer practiced skills to new and more complex problems. This is true in childhood (Glover, Ronning, & Bruning, 1990) and adult years (Li, Schmiedek, Huxhold, Röcke, Smith, & Lindenberger, 2008).
Practice helps students acquire expertise in subject matter and, therefore, it helps to distinguish novices from experts in given subjects (Ericsson, Krampe, & Clemens, 1993)
Both Fidelity & Modality impact knowledge and skill acquisition, either increasing or decreasing the overall effectiveness of the simulation-based learning experience.
The level of realism should be that which promotes the achievement of the expected learning outcome.
Fidelity in simulation is the degree of realism created through the selection of simulation equipment, the setting, and scenario. Fidelity also refers to the degree of exactness achieved, authenticity and corresponds to the believability of the experience. The range of fidelity can be measured as levels, low-, mid-, and high-fidelity and types, physical, psychological, and conceptual are associated with fidelity.
Higher levels of fidelity, judging it as superior to lower levels; the evidence does not support this global contention, finding all levels of fidelity beneficial when used appropriately.
Modality is the term used to refer to the type(s) of simulation equipment or methodology used, such as a task trainer, standardized or simulated patient (SP), full-body manikin/simulator, or a screen-based simulation and within each modality category, there exists an array of products representing a range of fidelity or realism.
The selection of an appropriate modality when planning a simulation depends on several factors, including the availability of equipment, stated objectives and desired learning outcomes.
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