A Virtual Skills Practice may sound intimidating, but it is not. This is not a test. It’s your opportunity to practice the skills you learned in the online portion of the course and ask questions. The skills practice is more like a discussion seminar on Wilderness First Aid. I make the practice fun and stress-free. Most all students complete the Skills Practice in 90 minutes. You will leave the practice session with your WFA certification card in your email inbox and the confidence and knowledge to care for a person experiencing a medical emergency.
“I can not compliment you enough for your excellent material and your awesome personality. You were a pleasure to meet, work with and learn from. I was nervous but after a few minutes felt so comfortable and confident. I will be purchasing your course for our staff who take our kids backpacking in the next few months.”– Matt K.
Virtual Skills Practice Instructions
- When you have completed the online portion of the course, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will schedule your Skills Practice on a day and time that works best for you.
- Each student will create a full-body manikin to be used during the practice scenarios. See manikin instructions below. Students may use a family member, friend, or roommate to play the part of a patient during the scenarios and splinting assessments. In these cases, a manikin is not required.
- Each student will act as a caregiver in two scenarios with the instructor playing the role of the patient, reading from a detailed script. The instructor observes the scenarios to assess student learning and provide feedback.
- Each student will submit two completed SOAP Notes for grading. SOAP Notes are retained in the student’s records for the duration of their certification. You can download and print SOAP Note blanks here.
- Each student will complete an arm splint and a leg splint on their manikin. The instructor observes every splint build to assess student learning and provide feedback. All splints are graded according to a Splint Quality Checklist that can be reviewed here for arm splints and here for leg splints.
- Certification Requirements
- Complete the online portion of the course.
- Two completed SOAP Notes submitted.
- Two scenarios successfully completed.
- Arm splint and leg splint meets all criteria on the Splint Quality Checklists
Certification Diploma and Card Delivery
Upon successful completion of the skills practice, while are still on the Zoom call, you will receive your certification diploma and card via email in a PDF attachment. You can print your certification card and diploma and download your certification card on your smartphone. You will also have a URL that you can send to any organization that requests proof of your WFA certification and they will be able to confirm your certification online.
What to Expect During a Skills Practice
- We will coordinate a day and time that works best for you to conduct the Skills Practice. Most skills practices are completed in 90 minutes. Email me at email@example.com when you are ready to schedule your skills practice session.
- I’ll email you a Zoom invitation link that you will use to log into your session.
- We will start the session by going over how the skills practice will run and answer any questions you have.
- To start the practice, I will ask you to set up your webcam or cell phone camera where I can see you and the manikin (or your friend or family member). In both scenarios, your manikin will be laying on the floor.
- You can use the textbook I mailed you, Wilderness First Aid Made Easy, during the assessment. You can use the textbook throughout the skills practice. If you downloaded a copy of the Wilderness First Aid Made Easy App, (everyone who purchases the course receives a free download of the app) you can use the app instead of the textbook.
- We will complete two scenarios – one is a patient with an illness and the second is a patient with an illness and an injury.
- As you conduct the primary and secondary assessment, you will be touching your manikin (or friend/family member) and annunciating each step of the primary and secondary assessment. I will respond to the questions you ask the patient and also respond to any illness or injury the patient has.
- You may ask questions during the scenarios. The skills practice is an opportunity to learn, so please feel free to ask questions.
- As you diagnose and treat the patient’s injuries and illnesses, I will provide feedback just as a patient will. When you ask SAMPLE History, I will respond with the appropriate answers for the patient.
- When you measure vital signs, I will provide appropriate vitals as you take them on your manikin. Example – When you say “I am taking your pulse” and I will respond, “The pulse is….” and I will provide a pulse appropriate for the patient’s condition. We will do that for each vital sign.
- You’ll continue through the scenario continuing to treat the patient – and me providing feedback like a real patient will – until you clear the spine and write your rescue plan.
- During the scenario, you will complete a SOAP Note and at the end of the assessment, you can take a picture of it and email it to me for your student records.
- Once you complete the two scenarios, you will construct a leg splint and an arm splint on your manikin or friend/family member.
- After successfully completing the two assessments and splints, while we are still on the Zoom session, I will send you via email a PDF attachment that contains your WFA Certification diploma and certification card. You’ll have your certification credentials before we end the assessment. Also included on the PDF is a URL you can send to an employer or organization that requests to confirm your certification. Using the URL, they will be able to view your certification credentials online.
- Please reach out to me with your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to working with you during the skills assessment.
How to Construct a Manikin
Construct and bring to your skills assessment a full-body manikin using the instructions below. Students may use a family member, friend, or roommate to play the part of a patient during the scenarios and splinting assessments. In these cases, a manikin is not required.
Full-body Manikin Instructions
- Make as realistic of a manikin as possible
- long-sleeved shirt
- long pants or overalls
- gloves for hands
- socks and footwear for feet
- Head made from a balloon, stuffed bag or sack
- Stuff the clothing, gloves and head with towels, sheets, newspaper to fill out the minikin
- Attached the shirt, pants, gloves and socks with safety pins, wire ties or duct tape Make sure the torso won’t disconnect from the legs. Elbows and knees joints to be moveable and finish with a pair of shoes.
Example of a student-constructed manikin with a leg splint.
Textbook. Please have the textbook I mailed you, Wilderness First Aid Made Easy. You will use this book throughout the skills assessment. If you downloaded a copy of the Wilderness First Aid Made Easy App, you use the App instead of the textbook.
Splint Making Supply List – See my Leg Splinting Video and downloadable handout and the Arm Splinting Video and downloadable handout here for details on how these items will be used.
- 2 – Rigid Elements at least 3 feet long – No PVC pipe. Walking sticks work great along with broom handles and wood sticks at least 1.5″ x 1″ thick.
- 1 – SAM Splint or Rigid Element. You DO NOT have to have a SAM Splint. Any rigid element the length or so of a forearm will work.
- 1 – Padded Material – Sleeping bag or several large towels or two blankets or a combination of towels and a blanket.
- 12 – Cloth strips, each at least 24” long. You can cut these from old sheets or clothing. 550 cord will not work as it is uncomfortable to the patient.
- 1 – Triangle bandage or a large piece of cloth or a long sleeve shirt.
- 1 – Small cloth or towel to make a roll for behind knee
- 1 – Optional foam or inflatable sleeping pad
- 1 – A ziplock bag that can function as a cool pack
SOAP Notes, Each student will submit two completed SOAP Notes for grading during the Skills Assessment. Please download the blank SOAP Note here. This SOAP Note can be printed and filled out by hand or it can be opened using Adobe Acrobat on your phone or computer and filled out. If you are unable to print a SOAP Note, you can write out a SOAP Note using a blank piece of paper. Be prepared to take a picture of your hand-completed SOAP Note and text or mail it to me for grading. If you fill out the SOAP Note on your phone or computer, you can simply save it and email it or text it to me. I will provide QR Codes and links on-screen if you forget to download the SOAP Note.
Other Items to Have with You.
- Your backpack and whatever you take with you on a day hike. Not mandatory but nice to get to practice WFA skills with what you normally carry.
- Foam or inflatable sleeping pad, yoga mat or tarp. You will need this for your patient. See the Primary Assessment Demonstration here to see why this item is so important.
Additional Resources to Help You Practice for Your Skills Assessment – Instructor Office Hours
I hold Instructor Office Hours every Tuesday evening at 8 PM EST to answer questions, discuss WFA concepts and prepare students for their Skills Assessment. Office Hours are not mandatory. Please feel free to register for any Tuesday. If 8 PM EST is an inconvenient time, please let me know and I am happy to schedule some times that work best for you. It is important to me that all students have the opportunity to really learn and absorb first aid training so that they will feel confident and competent when they need to provide care. When you register for the course, I will send you a registration link for the Office Hours in your Welcome Email.
Please reach out to me with your questions at email@example.com. I look forward to working with you during the skills assessment.