Virtual Patient Simulation Training for Clinical Social Work Diagnostic Assessment and Skills Evaluation
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Despite successful completion of advanced clinical training and professional licensure, many clinicians lack adequately developed clinical assessment skills, resulting in misdiagnosis of mental health issues. Skill deficits may result from systemic factors associated with current clinical training programs including the widespread use of passive/observational learning and limited experiential learning opportunities, inadequate practice with live clients in field placements, and unstandardized assessment measures. This study evaluates standardized virtual patient simulation to determine the impact of these simulations on students’ self-efficacy, diagnostic accuracy and clinical interviewing skills. This project also compares students’ performance on Objective Clinical Structured Examinations (OSCEs) using both standard actor patients and virtual patients.