All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Jeffrey D Kerby

Advisory Committee Members

Lee K Moradi

Scott W Snyder

Bharat K Soni

Douglas A Talbert

Document Type

Dissertation

Date of Award

2015

Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) School of Engineering

Abstract

While the science of medicine continues to grow as new discoveries in the treatment of disease are made, the education of existing procedures has not evolved with the growth of new technology. The training of doctors and nurses is still, primarily, one of classrooms and presentations. In addition, this training is predominately focused on treating the patient once they have reached the hospital, with limited thought given to out of hospital emergencies. Simulation labs are present at most schools, but these are limited in their ability to deliver identical scenarios across the entire student population due to variances in personnel and equipment. The objective of this project was to develop and test an immersive Virtual Reality Environment (VRE) that would expose students to a consistent simulation of a basic life-saving procedure, namely Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR). The study would empirically compare the routine classroom learning of CPR with a more stressful environment with the hope of testing the long term retention of the knowledge in nursing students. A two-part focus group preceded the formal research study to validate the material being tested as well as to validate the research instruments. Questionnaires, observations, system data files and interviews were used to explore the effectiveness of the training methods being studied.

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