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Instructors Create Online Interactive Microbiology Lab Manual

June 7, 2016 -- A new online microbiology lab manual developed by three CNM instructors is making it easier for students to learn the subject and work more efficiently in the lab.
Instructors Create Online Interactive Microbiology Lab Manual

Jun 07, 2016

“This new manual replaced an older printed version,” said Karen Bentz, microbiology instructor who helped develop the interactive manual. “It has diagrams and photos that better explain lab procedures and bacterial characteristics.”

Bentz worked with fellow microbiology instructors Patty Wilber and Heather Fitzgerald on the project.

Several aspects make the new manual better than the older, printed version. Because of the prospect of bacterial contamination in the labs, students could not take the paper manuals home to review. They had to work with it in the lab wearing a face shield and gloves for protection.

The new version is all online and students do not have to pay to use it. Students can print out chapters at home or in the library and study from there. Many students use the manual online only on their laptops or tablets.

The three instructors wrote different chapters, and Bentz, Wilber and Fitzgerald edited each other’s work. Click here to access the manual.

Wilber also visited labs at local hospitals and Tricore to make sure the new manual captured actual work technicians were performing in the field.

Corrie Andries, another microbiology instructor at CNM, produced videos on lab techniques for students to view before each lab, and Andrea Peterson and Deyanna Decatur tested the lab procedures before they were used by the students for the first time.

The idea for the online interactive microbiology lab manual was born at an American Society of Microbiologists: University Education conference held in spring 2014. Wilber, Fitzgerald and Bentz returned to Albuquerque determined to develop a better manual for students.

Bentz said she immediately noticed an improved interest in labs and the new manual by the students. “They loved the videos and graphics and that it was simpler to understand and up-to-date,” she said.