This presentation about serious games outlined work by the Ontario Simulation Alliance. They developed some really nice looking games for nursing students. The audience added that the optimal number of options in a multiple choice exam is three – Really? Wow – they linked it to neuroscience.


Nugget: Three choices is optimal both in testing and gaming.

I will be looking that up. Mind blown.

Nugget: Filming was done using a GoPro to capture the point of view of the nurse.


Process notes: Get a well developed scenario. Create a story board. Assign readings. Never teach new content – apply content.


Recommended Equipment was outlined and available in their slides. They also recommend charging your devices.


Content experts are needed to help develop scenarios.


Nugget: A lot of careful planning is needed for a serious game.

Their planning document has a lot of detail. Thought needs to be put into all aspects of the scene. Even the clothing people are wearing needs to be considered. Each short video clip was planned around decision points that were aligned with learning outcomes.

In working through some group work we talked about some scenarios around designing the game options for verbal deescalation of an angry patient. The activity was helpful in reinforcing the need to keep the learning objectives as the focus. It was fun to be an actor and helped me get a good shot of the fun.

Side note:

I loved the games but found the background noise distracting – they mentioned learning about the need to consider the space due to loud air conditioning. I recommend reading through their slides when they are posted for some good tips.


Laura Killam is an experienced nursing educator from Northern Ontario with a keen interest in improving student learning through innovation. For more information please visit


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