Many simulation-based education programs utilize co-debriefing, where more than one facilitator helps to guide the post-simulation debriefing process.  Co-debriefing is often fraught with various challenges, including: interruptions from co-facilitator(s), difficulty with staying on track, discordance between facilitators in method of debriefing and inability to address all relevant learning objectives.  Our seasoned and highly experienced team of educators has reflected on our collective experience in co-debriefing and will present several different strategies (proactive and reactive) to help guide the co-debriefing process.  We believe that implementation of these strategies will help attendees effectively integrate co-debriefing into their simulation-based education programs.

In this interactive workshop, attendees view multiple videos which will serve to stimulate discussion amongst attendees and faculty.  Attendees will be asked to  reflect on their own personal experiences with co-debriefing, and to identify some of the challenges they have encountered.  Next, we will offer and discuss specific strategies to help simulation educators effectively co-debrief.  These strategies include: (1) Proactive strategies – a group of strategies that facilitators can do to prevent issues from arising during the debriefing (2) Reactive strategies – a group of strategies that can be utilized by facilitators after issues (or while issues) arise during the debriefing.  Following a brief discussion of the various different strategies, attendees will have the opportunity to practice in small groups with video-based exercises followed by co-debriefing.  Each co-debriefing will be followed by instructor feedback and small group discussion.

By the end of the workshop, attendees will have a sound understanding of the challenges associated with co-debriefing and be able to apply several different strategies to promote effective co-debriefing for simulation-based education.1

This workshop was presented at the 2015 International Meeting for Simulation in Healthcare by Dr. Adam Cheng.


Cheng A, Palaganas J, Eppich W, Rudolph J, Robinson T, Grant V. Co-debriefing for simulation-based education: a primer for facilitators. Simul Healthc. 2015;10(2):69-75.[PubMed]
Adam Cheng

Adam Cheng

Director, Research and Development at the KidSIM-ASPIRE Simulation Research Program, University of Calgary
Adam Cheng is a Pediatric Emergency Doctor at Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary, Canada. As a clinician scientist in the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute, Adam conducts research focusing on cardiac arrest, CPR quality and debriefing. He helped to co-found the Debrief2Learn website.
Adam Cheng

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