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About Otago Clinical Skills Laboratories

Our people


The OCSL operates Monday to Friday 8am to 4:30pm and is closed weekends and public holidays.

Excellence through hands-on clinical education

The Otago Clinical Skills Laboratories ( OCSL ) are a joint initiative between the Otago Medical School and Te Whatu Ora.

The OCSL facilitates tutor-led clinical skills training and education to undergraduate students, and to Te Whatu Ora clinical staff. The purpose of the facility, and its programmes, is to provide a safe and effective learning environment for health professionals to develop, refine, and maintain their clinical skills, and to offer enhanced learning opportunities for both medical students and Te Whatu Ora clinical staff.

The OCSL is a resource that contributes to the best possible outcomes for the health of our community, with patients treated by clinicians who continue to gain and maintain their skills in a safe learning environment rather than by trial and error.

Otago Simulation Interest Group

The Otago Simulation Interest Group (OSIG) is a community of practice composed of a diverse group of educators interested in simulation-based education as it relates to health. The OSIG welcomes anyone with an interest in simulation-based education who has a professional role related to clinical education in healthcare.


Services, facilities and equipment

The OCSL is located on the second floor of the Fraser Building, which has entrances on Cumberland Street and Hanover Street.

Fraser Building at 154 Hanover Street on Google Maps

Venue utilisation and bookings

The venue is heavily utilised by the Medical School as part of the Advanced Learning in Medicine ( ALM ) programme – years 4 to 6 (ALM4–Trainee Intern). Te Whatu Ora facilitate and deliver many courses, workshops, and programmes through the OCSL . As part of the joint initiative, our clinical education is given booking priority.

Any organisations or courses held outside of the  joint initiative will be subject to OCSL's hiring fees for venue space and/or equipment.

All OCSL venue utilisation is pre-booked through the Operations Co-ordinator, with all equipment and personnel tracked and registered for data collection purposes.

The OCSL offers a limited (but useful!) range of clinical education equipment for loan to Te Whatu Ora and Medical School departments (adhering to OCSL policy, see below) for clinical training and education purposes.

As a venue, the OCSL can support a capacity of 80–100 personnel at any one time (spread through the 4 main areas), with limitations to attendant capacity per area.

See details of our workspaces

Booking enquiries

To make a booking enquiry for venue space, equipment loan, or other queries, contact the OCSL team:


All clinical education facilitated through the OCSL is to be supervised by appropriate faculty at all times.

Hiring fees for external users

OCSL Venue booking fees (PDF)

Please note that fees are subject to change

Equipment loan policy

The OCSL equipment loans are for Te Whatu Ora and Medical School use only.

OCSL policy only permits equipment to be loaned and used by personnel experienced and proficient in the use of the loaned item. Please contact the OCSL Operations Co-ordinator to see what equipment is available for loan:


Once an equipment loan has been confirmed by the OCSL , a form is emailed to the requestor and is on the equipment when ready to be collected. Please ensure the equipment loan board at the Collection Return Point is signed when collected and returned.  It is the responsibility of the department loaning the equipment to collect it from the OCSL Collection and Return Point in the main corridor, either themselves or by contacting and arranging collection through the Te Whatu Ora orderly system.

Any issues arising from the equipment during loan should be immediately passed on to OCSL staff upon return.

Equipment is not permitted be used or taken outside the Te Whatu Ora or Medical School setting.

Past events

Otago Simulation Interest Group Simulation Instructors Course 2023

The OCSL is proud to have been the host of the first iteration of the OSIG Simulation Instructors Course on the 20–21 of November 2023.

Health Care Educators from across the Otago Region collaborated to produce a course that introduced the fundamentals of Simulation-Based-Education (SBE) to fellow health professionals involved/interested in this teaching tool.

Key objectives of the course were:

  • Simulation best practice
  • Designing, planning and running sim
  • Establishing a safe learning environment
  • Debriefing a sim
  • Evaluating a sim

The course was well received and the OCSL hopes to facilitate this course again in the future.


One week of simulation-based education and training.

OCSL is proud to have collaborated with our international colleagues through the Southern District Health Board and Otago Medical School (Dunedin Campus), holding advanced simulation symposia, workshops, and plenary lectures for two years running, spearheaded by international simulation experts Professor Victoria Brazil and Jesse Spurr.

Participants were provided with a grounding on how to design and deliver simulation-based education effectively, as well as focusing on debrief techniques and reflective discussions which will help translate educational outcomes to clinical practice.

Key topics included throughout the programmes were:

  • Designing and delivering simulation-based learning
  • Designing and delivering scenarios
  • Debriefing and debriefing dilemmas
  • Hot topics – simulated patients/buy in and sustainability.

The programmes were well received and the OCSL hopes to facilitate more of these simulation programmes in the future.

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