National League of NursingNational League of Nursing

The Voice of Nursing Education

Unfolding Cases

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An unfolding case is one that evolves over time in a manner that is unpredictable to the learner. New situations develop and are revealed with each encounter. The NLN's Advancing Care Excellence for Pediatrics cases use the highly regarded unfolding case model developed for Advancing Care Excellence for Seniors (ACE.S). Each case includes the following:

  • A first-person monologue that introduces the family and the complex problems they are facing.
  • Simulation scenarios designed to help students practice assessment and interventions. Suggestions for debriefing are included.
  • An innovative final assignment that asks students to finish the story.
  • Instructor toolkits with suggestions on how to use the various components of the unfolding cases and incorporate them into the curriculum.

These unfolding cases combine the power of storytelling with the experiential nature of simulation scenarios. We hope you will give them a try!