Simulation training: Evaluating the instructor's contribution to a wizard of OZ simulator in obstetrics and gynecology ultrasound training

Aric Katz, Ronnie Tepper, Avraham Shtub

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Workplaces today demand graduates who are prepared with field-specific knowledge, advanced social skills, problem-solving skills, and integration capabilities. Meeting these goals with didactic learning (DL) is becoming increasingly difficult. Enhanced training methods that would better prepare tomorrow's graduates must be more engaging and game-like, such as feedback based e-learning or simulation-based training, while saving time. Empirical evidence regarding the effectiveness of advanced learning methods is lacking. Objective quantitative research comparing advanced training methods with DL is sparse. Objectives: This quantitative study assessed the effectiveness of a computerized interactive simulator coupled with an instructor who monitored students' progress and provided Web-based immediate feedback. Methods: A low-cost, globally accessible, telemedicine simulator, developed at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel-was used. A previous study in the field of interventional cardiology, evaluating the efficacy of the simulator to enhanced learning via knowledge exams, presented promising results of average scores varying from 94% after training and 54% before training (n=20) with P<.001. Two independent experiments involving obstetrics and gynecology (Ob-Gyn) physicians and senior ultrasound sonographers, with 32 subjects, were conducted using a new interactive concept of the WOZ (Wizard of OZ) simulator platform. The contribution of an instructor to learning outcomes was evaluated by comparing students' knowledge before and after each interactive instructor-led session as well as after fully automated e-learning in the field of Ob-Gyn. Results from objective knowledge tests were analyzed using hypothesis testing and model fitting. Results: A significant advantage (P=.01) was found in favor of the WOZ training approach. Content type and training audience were not significant. Conclusions: This study evaluated the contribution of an integrated teaching environment using a computerized interactive simulator, with an instructor providing immediate Web-based immediate feedback to trainees. Involvement of an instructor in the simulation-based training process provided better learning outcomes that varied training content and trainee populations did not affect the overall learning gains.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere8
JournalJMIR Medical Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2017


  • Distance learning
  • Evaluation research
  • Feedback
  • Simulation training


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