Simulated devices and workplaces replicate real work experiences and environments. Simulated work experiences usually fall into three categories: simulated workplaces, simulated tools, and school-based enterprises. Realistic scenarios and use of specialized equipment allow for practice and re-training until one can master the procedure or skill


  • Opportunity to develop training programs that can help build the workforce needed for the future and preparing strong future employees
  • Enable students to have work-based learning experiences without leaving school
  • Provides hands-on experiences that allow students to learn and practice skills within a protected environment where they can make and learn from their mistakes

Simulated Workplaces

  • Simulated workplaces:
    • Mimic the look and feel of an actual workplace
    • Bridge a classroom to the workplace without sending a student off-campus
    • Can vary in how detailed and realistic they are, depending on the school’s resources
      • simulating as many components as possible will also provide a valuable learning experience
    • It is essential to try and mimic the workplace rules and cultural nuances
    • Many high schools have common simulated workplaces experiences through integrated elective/ occupation-based courses
      • Auto detailing and maintenance
      • Business education
      • Foodservice
      • Manufacturing
      • Retail

Simulated Tools

  • Simulation tools:
    • Provide access to equipment that imitates tools used at the job site
    • Duplicate the look, feel, and operation of actual work tools
    • Engage students in scenarios similar to those they will encounter at a job
  • Tools allow for repetition to practice industry-specific skills to meet employment requirements

Soft Skills Development Activities

Attendance: Through discussion and role-play scenarios, you can support students in adjusting their mindset to understand the importance of good work attendance.

Student/employee evaluations: Help students understand positive and negative feedback about the job performance to develop an understanding of their job strengths and the areas they can work to strengthen.

Portfolio projects: Purposeful collections of student work providing evidence of knowledge, skills, and work habits gained through simulated work experience can be valuable for future job applications and to keep track of strong experience.

Certification: Depending on the simulated workplace structure, students could have goals to pass certification tests or competencies.

Weekly meetings: Creating mock weekly staff meetings to simulate weekly workplace meetings can allow students to practice meeting etiquette and cover several topics, like action items, roadblocks, work task assignments, and questions.