A blended approach to supporting student learning in clinical microbiology laboratory classes
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Traditional approaches to teaching clinical diagnostic microbiology utilise a gradual but repetitive regime of exposing students to working with and identifying various bacteria growing on artificial culture media. It was anticipated that the addition of a two camera video display system, utilising two 65 inch plasma televisions, into the microbiology laboratory would successfully enable a greater number of organism to be covered in a shorter period of teaching time. One of the main objectives of the system was to improve the ability of the students (n=52) to differentiate between potential pathogenic and non-pathogenic bacteria based upon the colony morphologies of the organisms on various culture media. 94% of the students agreed that their ability to recognize potential pathogens growing on agar media was improved by using the system. 100% of students agreed that the video projection system was a positive addition to the microbiology laboratory and 100% agreed that using the system during practical classes enhanced their learning of the material in the course. 90% feel that a similar system would be useful in other microbiology units they have studied. The system successfully enabled a content rich syllabus to be taught in limited period of time.
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