Nursing XR – a VR application to teach decision making to student nurses




Extended Reality, Virtual Reality, Design Process, Nursing, Education


This paper validates an approach to the design and development of VR applications that are integrated into the curricula and address fundamental student needs. To accomplish this, a case study describing the process undertaken to create Nursing XR, a wound dressing scenario where the patient is discharged home and requires follow up care and treatment by a nurse. The aim of the VR application is to support nursing students in developing their communication, risk assessment, holistic assessment, and person-centred clinical decision-making skills.

To design Nursing XR, needs and initial requirements were collected via a workshop with student nurses. The workshop, which involved 10 student nurses and two lecturers in nursing from two Universities (Co-Is) and was led by the PI, supported by the learning technologist and the head developer of the company used for development of the software. Results from the workshop identified two major needs for the students: the need to undertake practical applications of the procedures learned in the lectures and the need to build confidence in the skills required of a nursing student. These needs were the foundations for the design process, which followed an artefact-based approach. The artefacts generated during the design were also used to elicit additional interaction and software requirements from the nursing lecturers. An iterative lean development process was followed by the company for the software implementation. Throughout the development, students and lecturers were involved as user testes ensuring that the user experience of the application was satisfactory, and the application fit for purpose.
In this paper, we describe the high-level design and development process followed by the multidisciplinary team to develop Nursing XR and report initial qualitative findings from the workshop focus group.