Document Type

Presentation - Oral - to academic peers, less than or equal to 1 hour

The Great Escape: A Trilogy of Escape Rooms to Engage & Educate Nursing Students



Date of Activity

Summer 7-18-2023


Nurse educators are looking for effective ways to engage multi-generational learners (including Gen-Z) and prepare them for clinical practice and NextGen NCLEX success. (Johnson, 2023; Wintheiser & Beckness, 2023). Nurse educators are challenged to help learners develop clinical judgment and critical thinking to prepare them for clinical practice and NextGen NCLEX success (Johnson, 2023). One proposed strategy to address these challenges is the implementation of educational escape rooms.

Escape rooms have been used in higher education (Pozo-Sánchez et al., 2022) and for medical students and healthcare professionals (Rosenkrantz et al., 2019). Additionally, escape rooms have been used by healthcare system educators for new graduate/employee orientation and annual competency education (Adams et al., 2019; Daniels et al., 2022, Dunne, 2022; Gates & Youngberg-Campos, 2020; Millsaps & Swihart, 2021) and by educators at institutions of higher education (Antón-Solanas et al., 2022; Gómez-Urquiza et al., 2022; Kutzin, 2019; Tassemeyer et al., 2021; Vestal et al., 2021; Wintheiser & Beckness, 2023). Educational escape rooms have varied in topic including general nursing (Adams et al., 2019; Daniels et al., 2022; Gates & Youngberg-Campos, 2020), ER nursing (Millsaps & Swihart, 2021), critical care nursing (Gates & Youngberg-Campos, 2020), OB (Dunne, 2022; Tassemeyer et al., 2021), pediatrics (Wintheiser & Beckness, 2023). Several studies used educational escape rooms for Fundamentals nursing students (Antón-Solanas et al., 2022; Vestal et al., 2021), OB students (Tassemeyer et al., 2021), Adult Health students (Gómez-Urquiza et al., 2022) and graduate students (Gates & Youngberg-Campos, 2020). Antón-Solanas et al. (2022) described an online escape room, while Vestal et al. (2021) described the conversion of an in-person escape room to an online escape room. Overall, these studies described educational escape rooms as interactive and engaging that increased confidence, encouraged critical thinking, promoted collaboration, and developed communication in a setting that created realistic time urgency.

This presentation will demonstrate three different types of escape rooms in the educational setting. The first activity is an in-person classroom escape room on the topic of dosage calculation. The second activity is an online escape room activity summarizing key topics in a fundamentals course. The third activity is an in-person skills lab escape room activity on the topic of pneumonia for second-year adult health students. Each activity was developed by one of the presenters.


Adams, V., Burger, S., Crawford, K., & Setter, R. (2019). Can you escape? Creating an escape room to facilitate active learning. Journal for Nurses in Professional Development, 34(2), E1-E5.

Antón-Solanas, I., Rodríquez-Roca, B., Urcola-Pardo, F., Anguas-Gracia, A., Satústegui-Dordá, P. J., Echániz-Serrano, E., & Subirón-Valera, A. B. (2022). An evaluation of undergraduate student nurses’ gameful experience whilst playing a digital escape room as part of a FIRST year module: A cross-sectional study. Nurse Education Today, 118, 1-8.

Bashir Raja, K. Y., Kempson, S., & Pujeh, E. (2023). Nursing escape rooms: Adding fun to learning during high fidelity simulations. Nursing Open, 10(1), 6-7.

Daniels, D. A., Caruso, S., Morrell, B., & Eukel, H. N. (2022). The safety showdown: Perceptions and practice change of inpatient caregivers after a patient safety escape room. Journal for Nurses in Professional Development, 39(3), 136-142.

Dunne, B. M. (2022). Cesarean section escape room for a perinatal nurse residency program. Journal for Nurses in Professional Development, ( ), 1-4.

Gates, J. A. & Youngberg-Campos, M. (2020). Will you escape?: Validating practice while fostering engagement through an escape room. Journal for Nurses in Professional Development, 36(5), 271-276.

Gómez-Urquiza, J. L., Hueso-Montoro, C., Correa-Rodríguez, M., Suleiman-Martos, N., Martos-Cabrera, M. B., Gómez-Salgado, J., & Albendín-García, L. (2022). Nursing students' experience using an escape room for training clinical skills and competencies on emergency care: A qualitative observational study. Medicine, 101(30), e30004.

Johnson, M. (2023, February 9). KeithRN clinical reasoning escape rooms develop student clinical judgment by integrating educational best practices. KeithRN. Retrieved from

Kutzin, J. M. (2019). Escape the room: Innovative approaches to interprofessional education. Journal of Nursing Education, 58(8), 474-480.

Millsaps, E. R., Swihart, A. K. (2021). Utilization of a stroke escape room to enforce best practice standards for acute ischemic stroke. Journal for Nurses in Professional Development, 37(6), 347-350.

Pozo-Sánchez, S., Lampropoulos, G., & López-Belmonte, J. (2022). Comparing gamification models in higher education using face-to-face and virtual escape rooms. Journal of New Approaches in Educational Research, 11(2), 307-322.

Rosenkrantz, O., Jensen, T. W., Sarmasoglu, S., Madsen, S., Eberhard, K., Ersbøll, A. K., Dieckmann, P. (2019). Priming healthcare students on the importance of non-technical skills in healthcare: How to set up a medical escape room game experience. Medical Teacher, 41(11), 1285-1292.

Tassemeyer, D., Rowland, S., & Barnason, S. (2021). Building a Nursing Escape Room: An Innovative Active Learning Strategy. Nurse Educator, 46(5), 271-272.

Vestal, M. E., Matthias, A. D., & Thompson, C. E. (2021). Engaging students with patient safety in an online escape room. Journal of Nursing Education, 60(8), 466-469.

Wintheiser, K. & Beckness, M. (2023). A guide for facilitating an escape room for undergraduate nursing students. Teaching and Learning in Nursing, 18(1), 181-184.

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