Human Patient Simulator Program: UBC’s Commitment to Student Learning

The School of Nursing at UBC’s Okanagan campus is a highly respected program providing nursing students with the skills they need to deliver outstanding health care within an increasingly complex health care system. Students experience an intimate, student-centred classroom environment while developing an essential understanding of people within the context of health and healing. As outlined in Place and Promise: The UBC Plan, the School of Nursing serves to carry out UBC’s commitment to transformative student learning.

Human Patient Simulator Program


Recognizing the potential of an innovative teaching opportunity, the School of Nursing launched the Human Patient Simulator Program in 2007. Human patient simulators are complex, computerized human replicas that can blink, speak and breathe. A human patient simulator can replicate a male or female patient, has a heartbeat and a pulse, and imitates changes in patient status in real time. Under the control of a qualified nursing trainer, human patient simulators accurately mirror human responses to medical procedures such as intravenous medication, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and the insertion of a catheter or chest tube. Beginning with one adult simulator, the School of Nursing’s training program now includes a child simulator, a maternal simulator, and an infant simulator.

The Human Patient Simulator Program offers a safe and risk-free environment for students to connect theory to practice, and to experience a wide range of scenarios relevant in real life health care settings. Training with a human patient simulator strengthens the ability of nursing students to recognize symptoms and treat patients while communicating clearly with a health care team. Training sessions with the simulator are recorded on video, enabling instructors and students to review and reflect on the actions and care provided during the session, further deepening students’ learning experience.

The Human Patient Simulator Program has proved to be exceptionally successful in providing nursing students a secure environment in which to build the skills and confidence they need to provide safe, effective care to patients of all ages. Building on this success, the School of Nursing is seeking to expand the Human Patient Simulator Program in order to increase opportunities for nursing students to engage in this meaningful learning experience.  Expansion of the Human Patient Simulator Program includes the purchase of additional human patient simulators, medical equipment to support each simulator lab, and renovations to accommodate lab requirements.


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