ERIC Number: ED336160
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
The Use of Role Play To Teach Communication Skills.
O'Donnell, Nancy; Shaver, Lisa
Role play (a dramatic technique in which individuals improvise behaviors that illustrate acts expected of persons involved in defined situations) has several advantages for the classroom. Role play: (1) involves little or no additional instructional costs; (2) allows students to practice behaviors and skills; (3) closes the gap between training and real-life; (4) allows for immediate instructor feedback; and (5) can be used to motivate students and change attitudes. The steps to conducting a role play include deciding on the skill/behavior to be learned; developing a scenario; assigning character roles; giving participants and observers specific jobs; conducting a brief warm-up; running the scenario; and holding a debriefing to discuss role-play interactions and behaviors (rather than students' acting ability). At J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College (JSRCC), role play is utilized in a pediatric nursing course to enable students to demonstrate their acquisition of specific nursing skills before they provide direct nursing care to pediatric patients. The most common scenario involves the nursing student explaining a medical procedure that will be performed on a child to the child's mother (played by the faculty member). Students not only demonstrate procedural knowledge, but also develop interpersonal communication skills. Role play is also utilized in group situations to discuss moral and ethical aspects of nursing, and to give students a sense of the duties of charge nurses responsible for a group of student nurses by having students simulate their role. Other professional fields could also benefit from role play techniques at the training level. (PAA)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: J Sargeant Reynolds Community College VA
Note: Paper presented at National Conference on Successful College Teaching (14th, Orlando, FL, March 1-3, 1990).