A Tool for VR Medical Simulation Planning


value map exercise for VR medical training

Click the image above to open this free planning tool.

When evaluating virtual simulation options, there are many great options to consider. It can be a substantial undertaking. How can you most efficiently evaluate the the many offerings available?

This post offers a planning tool you can use to ensure that your implementation aligns well with the underlying objectives of all project stakeholders.

This planning tool is a modified implementation of the highly effective ‘Business Model Canvas,’  a strategic management template for developing business models.  The process helps achieve focus and clarity, and could be equally effective in implementing VR for medical training.


Here’s How it Works:

First, we highly recommend learning more about the Business Model from the original source this template was derived from.  The official site is here: [link].

To work with our derivative version focused on VR training, visit this free Google Doc: [link].  Create a new Google Doc of landscape orientation 8.5″ x 11″ with 0.5″ left and right margins.  Then copy and paste the contents of this template into your own Google Doc.  Go to View menu and uncheck ‘Print Mode’ for optimal viewing.  This will enable you to edit the contents of the document to suit your own planning.

Start on the right side, and work to your left to guide your strategy.  Begin with the ‘job position.’   For example, you might begin with ‘Student.’


With a student in mind, move to the Gains column.  What outcomes or benefits do your students expect from your organization?  For example, in a nursing program, students might expect to Gain simulated clinical experience or gain knowledge that will help them pass exams.  List those Gains in this cell of the table.


What Pains might a student have in this example?  For example, a potential Pain for a nursing student might be limited access to a sim lab or instructor / technician time for experiencing simulations.

Gain Creators

What could help create Gains for students?  For nursing students, well crafted clinical simulation experiences are one example of a potential Gain they would benefit from.  Having access to simulation at all is a Gain for nursing students – high fidelity medical simulation in particular.  It’s their biggest opportunity to go beyond the classroom or textbooks, and become immersed in an environment where they can Gain valuable simulated clinical experience and training.  Simulation is a huge Gain Creator for students.

Pain Relievers

Mapping to the Pain of limited sim lab access, a Pain Reliever is something that can help eliminate those Pains.  It’s helpful to avoid getting caught up in feasibility in this brainstorming, but instead to imagine – in a perfect world – how could these Pains be alleviated or eliminated?  In the case of a nursing student, it could be increased access to sim lab.  Hypothetically, this could be achieved by increasing the hours of operation of the lab to 24/7 access.  Additional instructors and technicians could be hired to perform simulation activities.  An addition to the sim lab could be built to make room for additional simulation space.  Obviously, all of these Pain Relievers would add considerable cost, but in a perfect world – these solutions would definitely remedy the pain of limited access to simulation.

VR Opportunities

Finally, having completed this exercise, you can now begin to imagine the types of VR content that could provide the most value to your students.  Following the example of a nursing student as the case in mind, it could be that VR’s greatest value would be in providing greater access to a wider range of simulation experiences.  Perhaps VR could enable simulation to be accessible even when the sim lab is closed by setting up a VR lab in the library or some other managed location?  Perhaps activities available within the VR implementation could augment or otherwise support instructor-led demonstrations to help prepare students for valuable sim lab time?  By enabling students to work with VR medical simulation content, it gives them greater access to immersive instructor-led simulation, depending on the VR applications you decide to implement.  The results from this brainstorming are invaluable as you approach your VR software evaluation process, knowing the specific pains and gains the implementation can address.


The example above only covers the use case of a student, but you might complete another template focusing on value mapping for simulation technicians, instructor faculty, physicians and anyone else who might be a stakeholder in your program.

Simulation Planning

If you’re using Acadicus to implement your VR for medical or healthcare training activities, this tool can also help you determine which simulations to develop.  Instructors can work with our production team to capture 3D demonstrations of their demonstrations, or our custom development team can produce content required to conduct almost any kind of training scenario you require.


I hope this process brings value to your organization.  If it has, please let me know via email at, I would love to hear from you!


Send Us a Note

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Jon Brouchoud is the founder and CEO at Arch Virtual, developers of the Acadicus VR Training platform. 

Jon leads Arch Virtual’s development team, and his passion is using virtual reality technologies to solve real world problems.  He has over 20 years of experience in professional practice and has won numerous awards and competitions for his work in 3D development for clients including GE Healthcare, Suzuki, NBA Sacramento Kings, ASSP, American Family Insurance, ExxonMobil, Oculus, Facebook and many others. 

Jon holds a Master’s Degree in Architecture, and his work has been featured in the New York Times, Business Week, Architectural Record, and the Chicago Tribune.

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