Student Perceptions of Simulation to Enhance Clinical Readiness for Assessment and Management of Adults With Voice Disorders

  • Anna F. Rumbach
    Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Anna F. Rumbach, Speech Pathology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Brisbane 4072, Australia.
    Speech Pathology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
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  • Danielle Aldridge
    Speech Pathology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
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  • Anne E. Hill
    Speech Pathology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
    Search for articles by this author
Published:November 27, 2021DOI:



      Simulation is a safe, supported, and accessible learning method for students to gain skills and experience, especially in difficult to access range of practice areas such as voice.


      The study aimed to explore change in students’ perceptions of knowledge, confidence, anxiety, and clinical readiness for assessment and management of an adult with a voice disorder after participation in simulation-based learning activities.


      Participants (N = 113) were students enrolled in a mandatory course dedicated to the voice and voice disorders. Students completed 32 hours of academic coursework which included lectures and tutorials and two 30-minute simulation-based learning activities with a standardized patient playing the role of an adult with a voice disorder. The impact of the simulation-based learning activities on student perceptions of their knowledge, confidence, anxiety, and clinical readiness for work within the area of voice were surveyed at three time points: (1) pre lectures, (2) post lectures but pre simulation, and (3) post simulation. Change across time was analyzed using repeated measures analysis of variance with post hoc Bonferroni adjustment.


      All students perceived significant (P ≤ 0.001) positive changes in knowledge and confidence across time points for all activities, except for writing an assessment report. Anxiety related to the management of a client with a voice disorder fluctuated significantly (P ≤ 0.001) throughout the program. Overall, the majority (>90%) of students agreed or strongly agreed that the simulation-based learning activities were useful and helped them to develop clinical skills, apply content taught in lectures, and gain confidence and interest in voice.


      This study supports incorporation of simulation-based learning as part of students’ clinical preparation for the assessment and management of voice disorders.

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