Original Research

Promoting experiential learning through the use of high-fidelity human patient simulators in midwifery: A qualitative study

Hafaza B. Amod, Petra Brysiewicz
Curationis | Vol 42, No 1 | a1882 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v42i1.1882 | © 2019 Hafaza B. Amod, Petra Brysiewicz | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 11 November 2017 | Published: 21 January 2019

About the author(s)

Hafaza B. Amod, Discipline of Nursing, School of Nursing and Public Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Petra Brysiewicz, Discipline of Nursing, School of Nursing and Public Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa


Background: The need to use innovative teaching and learning strategies in the nursing pedagogy is important in the 21st century. The challenges of clinical sites and opportunities for nursing students to gain clinical experience are a growing concern for many nurse educators. High-fidelity human patient simulators (HFHPS) are computerised mannequins that replicate a real-life patient, and when integrated into classroom teaching they allow students to become fully immersed into an almost real-life scenario.

Objectives: The aim of this study was to describe how HFHPS can promote experiential learning following the management of postpartum haemorrhage as a midwifery clinical emergency.

Method: A descriptive qualitative research approach was carried out in this study. The research setting was a local university in KwaZulu-Natal. The total population included all (N = 43) fourth-year baccalaureate of nursing undergraduate student midwives who participated as observers and/or role-players of a scenario role-play. An all-inclusive sampling was performed. There were 43 student midwives involved in the simulation teaching session with 6 of these students actively participating in each role-play at a time, while the remaining 37 observed. This occurred in two separate sessions and all the student midwives were involved in a debriefing session. These student midwives were then followed up and asked to participate in a focus group. The data in this article came from two separate focus groups which comprised 20 student midwives in total. Data were analysed using content analysis.

Results: Four categories emerged from the data, namely HFHPS offers a unique opportunity for student midwives to manage complex real-life emergencies; promotes reflection by allowing student midwives to reflect or review their roles, decisions and skills; allows student midwives to learn from their own experiences and encourages student midwives to try out what they learnt in a real-life situation.

Conclusion: High-fidelity human patient simulators can be used in a complex case scenario to promote experiential learning of a clinical emergency.


High fidelity human patient simulation; midwifery; postpartum haemorrhage


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Crossref Citations

1. Experiential Training Workshops for Group Antenatal Care in Malawi
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Journal of Midwifery & Women's Health  vol: 67  issue: 6  first page: 759  year: 2022  
doi: 10.1111/jmwh.13436