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Why You Should Consider Gamifying CPR Instruction

“Gamification” in instruction is using game-like dynamics to enhance learning. When applied appropriately, it’s been found to increase learner engagement, motivation, learning speed and retention.

While it’s normal to think of a contest or game, gamification is broader and isn’t necessarily a game per sé. For example, if you drive or have driven a newer model automobile – gas, hybrid or EV – you’re likely familiar with displays that show your driving efficiency. These display kilometres/miles per litre/gallon, distance per watt, etc., showing how terrain, driving habits and other variables affect these. It’s been found that information like this “gamifies” many people’s driving habits. Once aware of how variables affect fuel/power efficiency, people adjust how they drive to go farther using less – playing a game, if you will, that helps establish better fuel/power conservation habits. The habits carry over even when driving vehicles without these displays.

In CPR training, the use of app-based feedback similarly “gamifies” learning compressions and rescue breaths. Using these while developing skills, students quickly learn to adjust their compression rates and depth and breaths, based on the feedback. For most people, self-correction is less stressful than instructor correction, and lowered learning stress is generally associated with more effective learning. 

After an initial introduction with the instructor, students self-monitor and correct themselves as they refine their skills to mastery, so the instructor doesn’t have to monitor each student continuously during this phase and instead pays attention to the class more broadly. Because students can see results and adjust themselves in real time, in most cases they more quickly develop their skills to the desired proficiency. 

The instructor gradually withdraws the use of the displays as student motor skills become automatic. Instructor comments become primarily reinforcing or offering minor correction: “Rate and depth are good – keep doing what you’re doing.” “A touch deeper. You’re starting to get just a little shallow.” Additionally, through the use of apps and Bluetooth QCPR (Quality Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Classroom) technology, instructors can monitor several students/mannequins at one time, while coaching to provide tips for improvement. 

Going one step further, at least one company (Laerdal) offers an actual game that can be applied to the CPR-learning process. Using Laerdal’s app, after primary skill development, students compete in a virtual race with their ambulances’ speed based on proper CPR techniques. The more consistent their technique, the faster they go. Races can be repeated until everyone is nearly tied, meaning everyone has well-developed skills. Students report this is a fun way to enhance their CPR skills because they focus on technique in a friendly, competitive learning environment instead of feeling like they’re being evaluated.

Using feedback apps to gamify your EFR® training can make teaching CPR more time-effective, as well as more rewarding for students. And, many older CPR mannequins can be retrofitted and updated to have feedback apps.

This article was written by Chris Robinson, Laerdal Sales Skills Development Manager

The post Why You Should Consider Gamifying CPR Instruction appeared first on PADI Pros.

Emergency First Response, cpr, EFR, first aidPADI Pros


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