San Diego State University

Health Assessment Lab

nursing student

The lab facilitates the development of health assessment skills.

The Health Assessment Laboratory, located in Adams Humanities 2122, simulates a real-world environment that enables students to develop and enhance their assessment skills using state of the art equipment and technology. The assessment lab supports students at various stages of learning. Baccalaureate, RN to BS, School Nurse Credential, Advanced Practice and Nurse Educator students learn to perform assessments appropriate to their scope of practice.

The Health Assessment Lab provides a simulated environment for the development of interviewing skills and the performance of focused and comprehensive physical exams. Heart and lung sound simulators facilitate the development of beginning and advanced cardio-pulmonary assessment skills. Various teaching models provide life-like representations of the human body where students can experience the assessment of abnormal/pathologic findings.

The lab contains 8 exam stations fully equipped to facilitate an exam as it may be performed in an inpatient or outpatient setting. Electronic equipment for taking blood pressure, pulse, and temperature are used. In addition, students develop skill in using pulse oximeters, dopplers, peak flow meters, otoscopes, ophthalmoscopes and episcopes.

Graduate students also use the lab to practice assessment skills using a standardized patient model. This teaching style uses a patient model (actor) to simulate a realistic patient encounter in the clinic or hospital. The student must use advanced assessment skills to obtain a health history and perform a physical exam using the appropriate examination equipment.

The Health Assessment Lab facilitates the development of health assessment skills prior to a real patient encounter. The realistic practice environment instills a sense of confidence and expertise in preparation for patient care.