Robyn Walker

Date of Award

January 2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Teaching & Learning

First Advisor

C. Casey Ozaki


Simulation learning experiences have become an accepted form of andragogy in speech-language pathology following a revision of the 2016 American Speech-Language-HearingAssociation (ASHA) Standards allowing students to count simulation hours towards their required hours for graduation. There is a lack of research in the field of speech-language pathology in assessment of student learning in simulation learning experiences used to meet these clinical hours. The purpose of this study was to use qualitative inquiry to further explore how faculty assess student learning in clinical simulation learning experiences used to demonstrate clinical competence in graduate programs in Communication Sciences and Disorders: Speech-Language Pathology (CSD:SLP). The following research questions were addressed: How do faculty experience the assessment of learning in simulation learning experiences? In what ways do faculty assess student learning in simulation learning experiences specifically designed to meet clinical competency standards? What, if any, effect has the COVID-19 pandemic had on the use of simulation learning experiences and assessment of student learning used to address clinical competency standards? A total of 22 interviews were conducted in 20 different ASHA certified institutions in the US. Key findings included assessment of graduate student learning in simulation learning experiences in graduate CSD:SLP programs is unstructured and inconsistent, programs need more guidance, professional development and structure to maximize student learning, and COVID-19 had significant impacts on the amount and type of simulation experiences offered in graduate CSD:SLP programs. Further research should focus on comparing competency in specific clinical skills to determine competency skills that are best suited for replacement by simulation learning experiences. Ideally, the outcome of this research would be the development of a best practice policy that xiv outlines, based on research outcomes, specifically which clinical skills can be met with simulation learning experiences, and how to integrate and assess student learning in simulation learning experiences used to meet clinical competency standards.