Background: Interpersonal and communication skills (IPCS) are essential for advanced practice nursing (APN) in our increasingly complex healthcare system. The Standardized Patient (SP) is a promising innovative pedagogy in medical and healthcare education; however, its effectiveness for teaching IPCS to graduate nursing students remains unclear. Objectives: We examined the effectiveness of using SP with SP feedback and group discussion to teach IPCS in graduate nursing education. Design: Randomized-controlled study. Participants: First-year APN students in Taiwan. Methods: Participants were randomly assigned to the experimental (SP assessments with SP feedback and group discussion) or control (SP assessments only) group. There were two outcome indicators: IPCS and student learning satisfaction (SLS). The IPCS were assessed before and after the study in interviews with the SPs. SLS was measured when the study ended. Results: All participants expressed high SLS (94.44%) and showed significant (p ≤ 0.025) improvements on IPCS total scores, interviewing, and counseling. However, there were no significant differences between groups. Qualitative feedback from encounters with SPs is described. Conclusions: Using SPs to teach IPCS to APN students produced a high SLS. The students learned and significantly improved their IPCS by interviewing SPs, but future studies are needed to confirm the effectiveness of SP feedback and group discussions.
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