Moulage Resource Book

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Despite it’s long use in medical education, there has been very little evidence to guide its use up until recently. The majority of research and publications are descriptive recipes! Moulage is evidenced by a number of theories that support good learning. These include: Dieckmann’s Theory of Realism, Authentic
Learning Frameworks and the Theory of Visual Attention.

Dieckmann’s Theory of Realism
Dieckmann's realism is derived from Uwe Laucken’s work. It argues that realism is made up of three components - physical, semantic and phenomenal realism. Physical realism refers to the physical properties of the moulage. The colour, the depth, the texture and so on. Semantic realism refers to a conceptual kind of realism – is it believable enough? Does it realistically represent what it is trying to represent? For example, does the bleeding represented enable action A to B in the scenario. Phenomenal realism is about emotions and persuasiveness – does the moulage engage the viewer in a way that emotionally engages them.

Authentic Learning Frameworks
In work by Diamond et al, researchers defined that for learning to be considered authentic, it must have the following four components: real worldness, open-ended enquiring, discourse among learners and choice. Moulage contributes to real-worldness by situating the learner in something that feels like the real world.

Theory of Visual Attention
The theory of visual attention underscores that our eyes are the window to cognitive processes - whether we are aware of it or not, our brain works tirelessly to determine what we should pay attention to. The brain prefers things that are: bright, have high contrast and have well defined edges. We can support these cognitive processes by creating moulage that achieves these goals. It also begs the question, “how authentic does moulage need to be?”

Authenticity in Moulage
The answer to this is not clear. We have some research that highlights that a higher level of authenticity is preferred by students, but does not contribute to their clinical performance. This same research informs us that poorly-created moulage can cause the students to be confused about the purpose of the simulation. Further work needs to be done in this area. Other areas of emerging research include the role of moulage in emotional preparedness and confidence in clinical practice
Original languageEnglish
PublisherBond University
Number of pages34
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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