You are here


We are positioned to become a simulation research center.

Health sciences education has come a long way
since the days when a model like this
was the height of technology.

All the core requirements are in place for Samuel Merritt University's (SMU) Health Sciences Simulation Center (HSSC) to contribute to this emerging field of inquiry:

  • an institutional commitment to research. As SMU expands the range of its doctoral programs we are also encouraging our faculty and students to increase their participation in research
  • a busy simulation facility collecting data from community as well as academic participants
  • an engaged faculty eager to explore possibilities and provide insights

There is much to learn about best practices, usage patterns, learner and instructor satisfaction, potential new modalities and technologies, and, most importantly, the impact of high-fidelity educational simulation on patient care. In our first few years we put our full attention to integrating simulation into SMU's curriculum and establishing partnerships with community healthcare providers. Now we are seeing the launch of exciting studies that will no doubt grow in number and variety as we move forward.

Researchers interested in utilizing the HSSC - please download the Executive Summary PDF to learn more.

We welcome your ideas about possible topics of study and your interest in research partnerships. Please contact:

Bill Stiers, M.D.
Simulation Specialist and Chair of the SMU Research Committee

Learn more about . . . 

Current simulation studies at SMU ↑ 

  • Understanding high-fidelity simulation. The purpose of this study is to increase our understanding of high-fidelity simulation design, educational practice and nursing student satisfaction. Investigators are evaluating nursing student responses to the simulation experience during their last pre-licensure clinical course. (For more information please contact:


    Lina Gage-Kelly, MS, ANP

    Sylvia Fox, PhD, RN

  • Enhancing Student Empathy with High-Fidelity Simulation Training. This Podiatry research project is exploring whether empathy improves as students progress through a simulation-based training that emphasizes the need for them to show compassion towards the patient and/or family members. Following the simulation a debriefing will provide reflection and teaching on how empathy was demonstrated. For more information, please contact Eric Stamps, DPM (estamps[at]samuelmerritt[dot]edu).

Hanover Research Council ↑ 

In 2009 Samuel Merritt University became a client of the Hanover Research Council as part of a strategic initiative from SMU's Office of Academic Affairs to support faculty scholarship and assist faculty and students in garnering grants and other funding for research projects. The contractual relationship includes the services of both Hanover Research (HR) and Hanover Grants (HG.)

In December 2010, a team from HG completed an on-site visit to SMU, meeting with members of the university community who are actively doing research or interested in doing so. The HG team will complete an institutional profile of SMU in early 2011 for the purposes of providing tailored resources and services to assist faculty with establishing a formal research agenda and producing quality research. The Health Sciences Simulation Center has been identified as a central locus for services provided by the HG and HR groups.

More on Hanover Research.

More on Hanover Grants