Nursing school is filled with many different
forms of torture, fun, I mean, learning.
And two forms that you may have already been
introduced to are Skills Lab and Simulation
Lab. They both take place at your school,
but are a little bit different and serve
In this section, I'll give you tips for
navigating both of them.
But first we need to just understand how
they are actually different.
So, starting off with Skills Lab.
Skills Lab is where you will learn new
You're going to practice them and then
eventually you're going to come back and
perform the skills in front of your
And this is called Skills Test Out and it's
We'll talk about it later.
Examples of things that you will learn in
Skills Lab are going to be things like how to
place an NG tube, how to do a central line
dressing change, how to bathe a patient, and
how to do a patient assessment.
These skills are not performed on live
Instead, they are in a lab environment
performed on a mannequin and
simulation patients that are really
incredibly freaky robots that are way too
realistic or very not.
But both options, either if they're really
realistic or not, they're both very equally
creepy. And when you are learning things in
a Skills Lab, you're usually going
to be kind of to set the scene for you in a
large room filled with patient beds
with some mannequins in them.
Some of them won't have legs.
So you should prepare for that.
And you can take turns, like, practicing the
skills after they have been demonstrated to
you. At some point, after you have learned
this skill and had time to come back and
practice, you will have a Skills check-off
day where you perform the skill in front of
your professor who will monitor you during
the skill while you do it and make
sure you do it correctly and then you're
And if you don't get it checked off, you
have to do some kind of a remediation and can
come back and try again. Next, let's look at
what is a simulation lab also called a
SIM lab. SIM labs have more advanced
mannequins that are even
creepier than the ones in the Skills Lab.
And they're in a room that usually has like
one or two beds that looks more like a
hospital room. This room is remotely
monitored by your professor, who can
control what happens in the room, can see
everything that is going on.
And the goal of this SIM lab is to put you
into situations that mimic
situations that you may see in practice as a
nurse, and to help you work through what you
would do and say in a more realistic
environment without actually
involving real patients.
For SIM labs, you'll usually be put into
groups and everyone in the group will be
assigned a role.
So, for example, if it's a code, you'll have
a recorder, someone who's the primary
nurse, someone who's like the social worker,
and then the scene will kind of play out, and
you will react in live time to it.
The patient outcomes will change based on
your intervention, and later you will
receive, like, a debrief feedback about what
was done well and what you could probably
change next time to make things go a little
Examples of things that you're probably
going to see when you do SIM Labs are mock
code blues, how to therapeutically
communicate with patients and their families,
and maybe what respiratory failure can look
like and how a patient would
decompensate. Occasionally, SIM Lab and
maybe even Skills Lab will actually
involve real humans called models or actors,
and they will partake in the situation to
help bring it to life even a little bit
SIM lab is usually seen as a stressful thing
there's no perfect way to prepare for it,
Because you don't know exactly what you're
going to be facing.
But at the same time, it's a really good
learning opportunity if it's done well
. Now, let's see what tips, if any.
.. I think I can pull some out, of what we
can do to make your life a little bit
easier and avoid some potential pitfalls
that I've definitely run
into while you're tackling SIM lab and