VirTra is known for preparing law enforcement officers using simulation training, but it goes beyond that. It can be a way to train officers while they are on administrative leave after a critical incident, or even a way to let officers work through past traumatic events.

Whether it is for training brand new recruits or helping officers brush up on existing skillsets, the following two cases show unique and impactful ways the VirTra simulator can be used.

Administrative Leave Does Not Mean Officers Have to “be on Leave”

For many people, hearing that a person is on “leave” means they are out of the office or workplace. “Administrative leave” can differ based on agency. This doesn’t have to be the case for officers – and it isn’t for Denver PD and Aurora PD. It is normal for an officer to be on non-enforcement duties while a critical incident is being investigated in these agencies.

According to a Denver Gazette article, having an officer on paid leave doesn’t cause a deficit in resources since most wish to continue helping the agency, despite being behind the scenes. Those who have been away from the beat for a while often brush up on their training by using the Denver PD VirTra simulator.

Another option that agencies may have considered is using the simulator to see if the officer involved in a shooting is mentally and emotionally ready to perform their duties. It is possible for an officer to be working through trauma to allow them to perform at pre-event levels.

Combating PTSD/PTSI and Traumatic Experiences

Officers are not only away from the job after a critical incident due to investigations, but also for their own mental wellness. Even though officers have been trained to respond with deadly force if it is the correct option, being involved in the shooting of another person can be highly traumatic.

In an interview by Dr. LaMaurice Gardner, Psy.D., the effects of PTSD are discussed and compared to that of seeing a ‘ghost.’ Dr. Gardner points to a painting of several soldiers either surrendering, running, or frozen in fear as a grim reaper-like figure stands over them. This ghost represents their fear – because what will happen if the soldiers turn around and walk towards the ghost? They will simply go right through it, as it is not a physical barrier, but a mental one.

How does simulation training come into play? Like Denver PD, it can be used to review tactics – or even get a look at an officer’s ability to perform after involvement in a traumatic critical incident. Dr. Gardner has experience as a Detroit PD Psychologist and Reserve Deputy for Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, allowing him to assist officers going through these experiences.

“The VirTra machine is an opportunity to expose my officers to situations that are similar to what they have gone through,” said Dr. Gardner. He begins by exposing the officers to a marksmanship range with targets they must fire upon. Gradually as they become more comfortable and confident, they will go into a scenario. The scenario may have them needing to use force – possibly the first time since the critical incident they were a part of. The use of the VirTra simulator is only part of Dr. Gardner’s process.

Obtaining a VirTra Simulator

Whether you are interested in making a capital purchase, using a police grant, or utilizing our STEP program, VirTra’s specialists are here for you every step of the way. Contact a product specialist to learn more.

One of the biggest mistakes an instructor can make during any training that focuses on judgmental use of force is to limit the scenario to one officer. While officer involved shootings often do involve only one officer, the training provided shouldn’t focus only on such a possibility. The reality on the street is that there is a possibility that multiple officers will be involved. Unfortunately, the truth is that when multiple officers are involved, if one makes a mistake, others might follow due to a lack of understanding of the full circumstances or out of instinct.

The place to identify such potential misunderstandings and mistakes is in training evolutions. You can’t do that if you only put one officer at a time through scenario-based training simulations. Just like we see on the “square range” where officers are put in static positions to shoot paper targets without movement or threat, putting a single officer through projected simulation training is akin to checking off the right box on an administrative checklist for training. “State required annual judgmental shooting training: check.” That’s not training; that’s administrative fulfillment. Training prepares officers for the real world and how to avoid mistakes that can cost lives.

It’s also a mistake to assume that all projected simulation scenario-based training involves judgmental shooting or use-of-force type training. Training simulation has developed to empower de-escalation training skills as well. With a given simulation system such as the V-300®, you can teach basic firearms marksmanship, judgmental use of force and de-escalation training.

After-Action Reports

True training (as opposed to administrative requirement fulfillment) requires putting officers in dynamic, fluid yet controlled situations where more than one behavior or skill can be provoked and tested, followed by a review of the training evolution. To perform an accurate After-Action Review (AAR) of any training evolution, the best tool you can have is a recording – both audio and video – of the training incident as it evolved. This allows the instructor(s) to pause the recording in debrief to specify behaviors or skills that were either appropriate or need to be corrected. It’s been said that approximately 75% of all learning occurs during the AAR as opposed to the 25% that occurs while officers are actually going through the training evolution(s).

Additionally, the training environment should be created to mimic the actual operational environment as closely as possible. That means that projected simulation is only one part of the training. It is the centerpiece that is “decorated” by role players as bad guys, injured civilians, obstacles, sound pollution (noise) and unexpected sights/visuals. The single largest limitation on properly performed projected simulation training is your imagination. Further, if the projected simulation can saturate the trainee’s situational environment to a greater degree, then the training is of greater value. That means that it’s beneficial to have a system that surrounds the officer as much as possible as compared to having a single projected screen in front of the officer. “Surround simulation” if you will, requires greater awareness and interaction from the officer being trained.

Defining Responsibilities

With an understanding all of the above, planning your training is critical. You need to know what your setting will be and how much you can modify it as well as how many instructors and role players you will have available. Any officer who is going to be a role player needs to be carefully choreographed. They need to have a very clear understanding of their purpose in drawing out the desired behaviors and/or skills of the officers going through the training evolution. The role players need to be carefully controlled so they don’t improvise in any manner that may detract from the training value of the scenario.

All of the responsibilities need to be clearly defined for the entire training staff. From the exercise controller (lead Instructor) to the Safety Officer to the Role Players, each participant needs to know their roles. Trainers need to establish who will be responsible for capturing each training evolution for use in the AARs?

The lead instructor, with assistance and inputs from the assistant instructors, should develop the training scenarios, effectively designing each simulation to include a full list of the desired behavioral objects, skill objectives, judgmental objectives, etc. All training objectives and desired behaviors should be clearly defined as benchmarks for each evolution. Any changes that occur to the setting between evolutions should be outlined. This is important as we all know students who go through the scenario will immediately tell the other students what they experienced, thereby setting up expectations. Being able to thwart those expectations adds to the unpredictable nature of each scenario.

As each student, pair of students or group of students goes through a training evolution, the immediate AAR should be limited to the “big” items that need to be corrected and/or positively reinforced. Both offer learning moments and should be utilized. AARs should never be purely negative. Corrections for deficiencies as well as praise for proper performance should be included. That said, immediately following a scenario, the major items of correction/praise should be reviewed. All other in-depth and detailed AAR items should be saved for later in a classroom. It’s important to remember that the entire group of students, not just those going through a particular scenario, can learn from the AAR of other scenarios.

Adding Stress to Simulation Training

One of the biggest learning tools for any projected simulation scenario-based training is adding stress. Some “shoot back” systems offer a pain penalty as they can hit the student with a non-lethal projectile if proper cover isn’t used. The downside of such shoot back systems is that a material that is NOT cover but is instead merely concealment can stop the projectile. Such an event actually serves to reinforce an improper behavior: seeking cover behind insufficient material…using concealment as cover. This is a mistake that can be life-threatening in the real world and should be avoided in training situations. The system used should allow the instructor to deliver the penalty in such situations.

VirTra’s V-Threat-Fire® allows for instructors to deliver a penalty without having to worry about aiming a shoot-back system first. Additionally, it includes a greatly reduced risk of personal injury and no clean up after the simulation is completed.

Finally, while most projected simulation training scenarios focus on a single behavior as the major pass/fail point (shoot / don’t shoot as the example), the situations and scenarios that lead up to that point are vast and, if used properly, can allow the instructor to evaluate a host of trainee behavioral objectives. Instructors who teach conflict resolution may be familiar with Boyd’s decision-making cycle: Observe, Orient, Decide, Act (often referred to as OODA loops because they are repeated until conflict is resolved). While many instructors use projected simulation-based training to evaluate the ‘Act’ step of that cycle, the more important Observe, Orient and Decide steps can be evaluated and critiqued if the simulation is used to its full potential. Instructors should realize that most student officers make mistakes in the decision making that leads up to their action. The action might be correct based on their observations, orientation and decision, but if they’ve made mistakes in their observation or made an incorrect decision, how do you correct that? Through a properly performed AAR supported by the audio/video playback of a scenario.

Not all projected simulation scenario equipment supports all of the necessities to deliver training as outlined above. For more information on systems that do, feel free to reach out to a product specialist.

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Warfighters and soldiers in the field face numerous dangerous and life-threatening situations every day. Not only are the enemies they face unpredictable, but they must also make decisions based on their unique environments, which are difficult to mimic or simulate using common learning methods. A simulator that utilizes real video is a highly effective way to train soldiers, and with time, this style of training can lead to better reactions and decision-making skills.

Virtual Simulators are Immersive

In many cases, recruits learn how to handle situations they may encounter in the field by listening to a lecture, watching a video, or going out into the field and practicing a variety of maneuvers. Though these things can and often do help members of the military learn what to do in certain situations, these methods lack realism and do little to properly train soldiers. When faced with a life-threatening situation, soldiers who have experienced that situation before are far more likely to react appropriately.

VirTra’s simulators are designed to provide a completely immersive experience and help soldiers feel as if they are truly out in the field. They utilize high-quality video and sound, and they come with dozens of pre-programmed scenarios that can be customized for unique situations. This makes a simulator one of the best tools available for training.

Experience Any Imaginable Scenario and Environment

Another of the biggest benefits associated with utilizing VirTra to train warfighters is the simulators’ ability to recreate almost any scenario in any possible environment. For example, a vehicle may react differently in dry conditions than in the rain, and by simulating both experiences, soldiers can learn the differences and make appropriate decisions. Types of military scenarios include green-on-blue, active threat, key leader engagement and more. Essentially, with the ability to control the scenario, the weather and the visibility, it is possible to help soldiers and warfighters learn what it is like to work in a wide range of conditions that they may not experience otherwise.

The same goes for virtual range training, where VirTra’s marksmanship programs are both customizable and ballistically accurate. This makes it a perfect supplement for live fire range training. Instructors can change the setting of the range from the time of day, weather, wind and more so military members can experience the effects different conditions have when firing. Instructors may also change the types of targets and how they appear, turn or pop up.

In-Depth Progress Measurement

VirTra gives military service members (and their instructors) an opportunity to review the actions that were taken during the simulation and improve their behaviors based upon the result. In other words, it is possible to measure soldiers’ progress objectively and completely. Simulators track everything a soldier says and does, and they can even record reaction time. Following a simulation, it is possible to review footage for debrief of any given individual’s performance. The more a servicemember experiences these scenarios, the better he or she will become at making quick decisions.


Service members out in the field experience a wide range of unpredictable situations. Because of this, it may seem impossible to train based on real-life experience, but this is not the case. Simulators can provide an incredibly realistic simulation of any imaginable situation in any environment, and when soldiers can learn by doing, they are far more likely to make the best decisions when faced with those scenarios in the field.

To learn more about how VirTra can help train your military squad, speak to a specialist.

We often discuss the power of our training scenarios, with their branching options, professional actors, high-end filming equipment and scenarios that are based on real-life incidents. And while we may touch on our debrief technology, this article is here to give it the recognition it deserves.

VirTra’s debriefing technology, known as TMaR—Trainee Monitoring and Recording—is a camera and microphone accessory fixated at the top of the training simulator. During scenarios, TMaR records a trainee’s performance, both visually and auditorily. After the scenario is complete, instructors can properly debrief by replaying every aspect of the scenario in the simulator.

In fact, instructors can pull up the recording on one screen, then replay the scenario on an adjacent screen (for users with a V-180 or V-300). The video and recording are synced, showing exactly how the trainee responded to the visual cues and threats.

Debriefing in this manner allows both the instructor and trainee to analyze the trainee’s movements, timing and even shot placements at any given time in the scenario. Does your current training simulator provide this in-depth of a debrief?

Watch TMaR and its benefits in action below:

Stress is one the tenets of Reality Based Training. Most of us by now have heard of Jeff Cooper’s Awareness Color Code. As officers we were taught to remain in condition yellow while on the job. In condition yellow you should be calm and relaxed but alert to your surroundings, aware of the people around you and paying attention to any physical cues they may be giving off. Alert, but not paranoid. In a perfect world, your training scenarios are requiring your students to operate in that same environment.

In my experience as a firearms instructor, I’ve seen plenty of students perform flawless reloads and weapons manipulation on a flat range. That’s because they know exactly why they are there and what the parameters are to complete the evolution successfully. They may be operating their weapon from condition yellow, being well aware of their environment, relaxed, but alert to changes in their weapon’s status or aware of physical cues that their weapon may be giving them to reload or clear a malfunction. On the other hand, I have seen some of those same officers stumble and hesitate when operating the same model firearm in a simulated training environment.

When being pressed by a threat the awareness level can quickly go from yellow to orange to even red, and trying to figure out why your weapon didn’t go bang when you pull the trigger becomes a difficult task for some. This is why it’s important to sometimes let your student fail in training. Ever heard the axiom “the more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in combat?” When your students are made aware that they’ve became task saturated, they need to learn from it and not leave the training venue without figuring it out. It is our job as trainers to provide them with the required remediation and let them work through the scenario again. Find out what caused the meltdown, let them figure it out and put them back into the same scenario.

All too often as instructors we forget that good repetitions are what makes good training. Using the Socratic method, we ask leading questions that help the student solve their own problems. It’s the same learning method that takes place in a simulated training environment. Our training and content team at VirTra makes use of law enforcement professionals to develop realistic training scenarios that are based on real world experiences. Every effort is made to ensure realism, and that immersive training can be accomplished. Play back features and the use of TMaR (Trainee Monitoring and Recording) camera enables instructors to play back what the student was doing at any point during the scenario in real time.

At our training center in Tempe, AZ, it’s interesting to watch when an officer who is “locked on” goes through a scenario that they have never seen before. They are confident in their abilities and operate efficiently in the 300-degree environment. That’s because they’ve been there at one point or another in their career, but that’s not the only reason. Periphery devices such as VirTra’s Threat-Fire® stress inoculation device, handheld and weapon mounted lights, ECW and OC cannisters are set up to operate exactly as they would function in the field. Use of these devices in our simulator enable students to use the same tool belt that they do in the streets.

As instructors we should be training our people in an environment that closely mirrors the real-world conditions that they may face on duty. In my mind, training is the best weapon our students carry with them into the field.

This article was written by Mike Clark, VirTra Law Enforcement Subject Matter Expert. Prior to working at VirTra, Mike had a twenty-year career in Federal Law Enforcement, where he had the opportunity to work at his agency’s national training center outside Washington D.C. Mike is also an active competitive shooter and NRA-certified instructor.

Training should not be a second thought, not a rushed affair and certainly not taken lightly. So why do some departments still train with outdated equipment? Depending on the equipment, its age and lack of technological advances, it could produce training scars. So why take the risk?

How This is Accomplished

VirTra’s training simulators and accessories are designed to immerse the trainee in real-life situations, making training so physically and psychologically real that skills are easily transferred to the field. This allows instructors to maximize training hours and lessons while knowing each trainee is receiving the best training possible.

Professional Actors and Equipment

To begin, VirTra’s scenarios are filmed with professional filming equipment and paid actors, ensuring high fidelity visuals for officers. VirTra does not use any CGI-characters in scenarios, as they are unable to recreate the small nuances that make humans realistic, such as micro-expressions, subtle body language and more. Instead, VirTra goes the extra mile to train professional actors how to move, speak and interact with other characters, often guiding them through multiple scenario outcomes, thus allowing us to create branching options for the instructor to select from while the scenario is in action.

Using the Entire Toolbelt

With VirTra, trainees are not stuck in simple shoot-don’t-shoot police training scenarios. Instead, due to our technological advances and accessories, trainees can use the entire toolbelt. This includes duty TASERs®—once outfitted with VirTra’s drop-in laser recoil kit—and OC spray. Now, trainees can practice with the entirety of force options, starting with verbal de-escalation and going up to less lethals or lethals if the situation demands it. As an instructor, you can provide better training on the use of force options.

Threat-Fire® Consequence Device

In a nutshell, the Threat-Fire is a consequence device that is attached to a trainee and delivers an electric impulse that simulates return fire, dog bites, explosions, etc. Instructors can use this device to safely apply stress and immediate negative consequences, if the scenario demands it. In addition to stress inoculation, Threat-Fire tests the trainee’s ability to stay engaged in the scenario and carry on with the mission despite the physical distraction. See this device in action while learning other details in this video.

Debriefing Scenarios and Marksmanship

Debriefing with VirTra is much more than a rudimentary summary of the scenario. Instead, VirTra offers the TMaR accessory—Trainee Monitoring and Recording—whose camera and microphone records the trainee’s performance during the scenario. Now in debrief, instructors can scrub through the scenario and replay any aspect, analyze any movement and review timing and shot placements. Can your current training simulator provide a debrief this in-depth?

Every training simulator, accessory and curriculum is designed to help keep officers and their communities safe. Learn more about how VirTra’s high-end technology can transform your department’s training by contacting a VirTra specialist.

This article was written by TJ Alioto, VirTra Subject Matter Expert.

Before I was a Field Training Officer (FTO), or even just a street officer, I was just another kid growing up. While I was out exploring the world, my mother would be right there to teach me, guide me and remind me of the things I can and can’t do. When I would see her do something that she said I’m not supposed to do, she would say “Do as I say, not as I do.”

Moms can say that. FTO’s cannot.

As an FTO, you have the opportunity to shape a new officer in a way that will guide them through their entire career. You’ll set the standards of what is and isn’t acceptable behavior, how to interact with the public and how to train effectively. A great way to start that path for the new officer is to do some one-on-one training in a simulator with them.

Think back to when you were a new officer. You probably had a million different things being thrown at you, all at the same time. It is a constant barrage of laws, policies, procedures and tactics. And as you’re trying to absorb all of this information so you can learn the job, you need to protect yourself, and those around you.

By using a training simulator, such as the VirTra V-300, you can remove some of the stressors a new officer experiences so they can focus on the exercise. And, as an FTO, you can model that behavior that you want that new officer to replicate. The trainee can be beside you in the simulator as you have them watch your movements, listen to what you say and see how you react. And they can do this in an environment where the only thing they have to focus on is the training.

Using the simulator will allow the FTO to slow the training down and explain as necessary the goals and how to get there. Scenarios can be paused for some training time, or branches can be selected for specific training items. Using the V-Author software, FTO’s can make their own custom scenarios to tackle some of their more common training issues with new officers.

Another great feature of using a training simulator in the FTO program, is the ability to capture the new officer’s performance early in the FTO training, then compare it to how they are doing near the end of their training. Training scenarios can also be used for officers that might have some “Not Responding to Training” (NRT’s) or “Unacceptable” ratings during their FTO program. The FTO can utilize the training simulator to help the officer by focusing on exactly what the concerns might be.

In those unfortunate situations where a new officer isn’t going to make it out of the FTO program, you can rest assured that you’ll have great training documentation if you used a training simulator and the VirTra Trainee Monitoring and Recording system (TMaR).

Being an FTO is, in my opinion, one of the hardest assignments an officer can have. Perhaps it can be a little easier and hopefully more effective by using a training simulator. And when you walk into that training scenario with your trainee by your side, you can become the FTO that says “Do as I say, AND as I do.”

Stay Safe. Stay Dedicated.

As an instructor, it is your duty to train and prepare officers in a variety of skills designed to perform in the field. After all, skills ranging from contact and cover protocol to recognizing and reacting properly to subjects with mental illness may all potentially save a life.

But after training is said and done, how do you ensure officers will retain and utilize this information when it is needed most?

Written Tests

Issuing a written test after the training regimen allows instructors to test the officer’s knowledge while creating proof that the officers knew the concept and passed the curriculum. VirTra recognizes the importance of testing and incorporated it into our V-VICTA™—Virtual Interactive Coursework Training Academy—program.

This program is specifically designed to teach, train, test and sustain officers on critical topics, such as: Autism Awareness, Mental Illness for Contact Professionals, Active Threat/Active Killer and more.

To begin, trainees engage in a pre-test prime their mind to learn the information about the given topic. Pre-tests are a teaching tool, that ready the mind to learn information that will be taught in the class. After, instructors then teach the concept through a combination of PowerPoint presentations, lectures, videos, scenarios and so forth, keeping officers engaged.

Each V-VICTA curriculum comes with corresponding scenarios, allowing officers to practice the newly learned skill in a real-life situation. Instructors can utilize this as another form of hands-on learning the concept while simultaneously testing the officer. After, instructors can issue the V-VICTA post-test to have a written record of the officer’s understanding of the course material.

Scenario-Based Tests

As touched on in the section above, scenarios are an efficient way of teaching and testing an officer in a realistic situation. Each VirTra scenario has an average of 85 branching options, allowing instructors to change the situation depending on the officer’s choices and producing an individualized scenario for each officer.

Another helpful scenario teaching and testing tool is the TMaR—Trainee Monitoring and Recording—accessory. This picture-in-picture recording system equips the simulator with a camera and microphone, each of which record the trainee. After the scenario is complete, the instructor and officer can review the footage and scenario together to see what the officer saw, reacted to or discharged their weapon at in any given time.

By implementing TMaR, instructors have another way of analyzing an officer’s movements, and therefore, create a better discussion on decisions, actions and stances made in the simulator.

VirTra does more than create state-of-the-art training simulators. We create a well-rounded training experience. Learn more about how V-VICTA, TMaR and other programs and accessories can teach, train, test and sustain your department by contacting a VirTra specialist.

Police academies and departments across the nation utilize a wide variety of methods and strategies to train new law enforcement officers. This can consist of roleplaying, lectures, trips to the range and so forth.

While each form of training has its benefits, they all fall short when utilized alone or siloed. This is because many training methods cannot account for the unpredictability officers will experience in the field, nor do they realistically immerse the trainees in the given scenario. This is why VirTra’s immersive simulators, such as the VirTra 300-degree judgmental use of force law enforcement simulator, provides a far more effective training.

The immerse quality is more than the physical immersion, though the V-300’s five screens do physically immerse trainees and officers, once they step into the simulator. Rather, immersion is taken to the next level with surround sound audio and integrated and interactive characters on each screen. In addition to this are the accessories: the Threat-Fire® provides real-life consequences and stress inoculation while VirTra’s recoil kits and CO2 magazines allow officers to utilize their personal firearms within the simulator. Instructors can take advantage of these immersive qualities to train officers in a variety of real-life situations from a safe, controlled and realistic environment.

Working Through Uncertainty

Law enforcement officials must work with unprecedented levels of environmental and situational unpredictability. After all, it’s a part of the job. While it is possible to account for some of the variables an officer might face, it is impossible to account for every variable in every situation, every day.

While lectures are important—after all, discussing the correct order of events provides direction and understanding—it cannot be the only form of training. Instructors can take training to the next level with roleplaying, though going through a scripted situation can only provide so much additional training. Simply put, there are no traditional teaching methods that can best prepare officers for the modern uncertainty they could face at any moment.

Why Scenario-Based Simulations

Even though there is a time and place for lecture-based and scenario-based training, trainees must train with immersive simulators to gain the best possible experience with ever changing outcomes in the moment based on the actions and reactions of the students. VirTra combines state-of-the-art technologies, certified curriculum and professional research to create a highly realistic training environment that increases and transfers skills to the field.

Instead of being told how to work through scenarios, trainees are placed in the middle of any given situation. The scenario begins with a voiceover of the police call from dispatch, then opening on the scene. After, trainees must engage with the subject(s) and make decisions to discover the best possible outcome. Each VirTra judgmental scenario is equipped with extensive branching options, allowing the instructor to choose the path of the scenario, based on the trainee’s decisions and actions inside the simulator. Training after this manner allows officers to engage in the same scenario multiple times, but receive a different ending each time, based on mistakes or proper choices made.

Immerse in Realistic Scenarios

At the end of the day, immersive scenario-based training establishes critical thinking and potentially life-saving skills that lectures. By surrounding trainees visually and auditorily, officers treat the training more seriously and find themselves engrossed in the situation.

Though VirTra’s simulators cannot completely replace other forms of training—such as live fire—it complements these skills and provides a foundation for an officer to build off of.

One of the most beneficial parts of the VirTra simulators is the debrief ability. After the scenario ends, instructors and trainees can replay the scenario and see what the trainee did correctly or mistakes that could have been avoided. The real-time play back, Picture-in-Picture playback videos and after-action provides extra training elaboration. No traditional method of training provides this debriefing opportunity or is as effective at helping officers understand the consequences of their actions.

VirTra’s immersive judgmental use of force simulator is a critical component of any department’s training program. Help your officers learn, build and maintain skills in the most realistic way possible with this immersive technology. To learn more, contact a VirTra specialist.



How often does your agency train with their simulator?

Surveys have shown that most law enforcement agencies only train with their simulator once a quarter; or even worse, only once a year. While agencies are busy completing other tasks and jobs, this lack of consistent training simulator use creates considerable downtime. Instead, your department can use the simulator in other areas to improve the agency while maximizing on your investment:

Customized Environmental Scenarios

Each VirTra scenario library is packed with a variety of scenarios, locations and events. However, agencies can take training to the next level with the V-Author program. Utilizing this software, agencies can take pictures of local landmarks or high-activity areas and upload them to the software. Once there, instructors can add characters into the image, making the training more personal and beneficial.

Cop Talks

The Utah Attorney General’s Office uses their simulator in various ways to maximize their use of force training. For example, the Office has seen a great improvement in an officer’s ability when using their system for items such as remedial training and educating prosecutors. By showing prosecutors how memory is encoded and recalled, they can teach them about common perception distortions experienced in a critical incident. These videos, Cop Talks, are released as a monthly series on YouTube.

Reinforce Classroom Training

VirTra’s V-VICTA curriculum is especially applicable in this case. Instructors can teach a lesson, tactic or principle in the classroom through slideshows and tests. After, trainees can put the lesson into practice, thus moving it to long-term memory, by engaging in the correlated scenario. Training after this manner allows instructors to maximize time while providing the best training experience.

These are only a few examples of how to incorporate training into other agency avenues. Innovative ideas, such as these, can give training a boost while keeping it consistent. For more ideas on how to maximize your training simulator, contact a VirTra specialist.