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Simulation as an educational tool to teach emergency medicine residents about unconscious bias.

CJEM 2024 March 27
Medical training embraces simulation-based education. One important topic that has recently been added to the simulation curriculum at the University of Toronto is unconscious bias. This educational innovation project evaluates a simulation that could be used as a novel instructional design strategy to teach unconscious bias. The simulation involved two resuscitation scenarios with a similar clinical trajectory. Each resuscitation was led by standardized physicians of different binary genders, followed by a debrief with highly trained facilitators. Tangible educational takeaways on team dynamic variation between different gendered team leaders were discussed following the simulation, highlighting its benefit to resident education on bias awareness and response. Limitations include inevitable unconscious bias in facilitators and unequal gender representation in the learner participants, which may impact simulation effectiveness. The findings support translating this simulation to other forms of bias education in future simulation development.

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