Training Public Health Laboratorians

Client: Association of Public Health Laboratories

Since 2013, Mind & Media has supported APHL by producing web-based continuing education courses on laboratory health and safety procedures, avoiding false positives, and best practices for excellence. APHL makes these courses available to member laboratories, and often, with their CDC partners, to international laboratories.

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Mind & Media developed two engaging case studies modules that allow laboratory professionals to improve their skills.

In the Tuberculosis (TB) False Positives training, users work through five cases of potential false positive results. Learners see case notes, test results, and genotyping reports, “call” submitters, and “interview” technicians to determine if results are indeed likely to be false positives.

In the Syphilis training, users enter their name so “clinicians” (role-playing characters) can address them. Learners read about each of eight cases and then answer a series of questions to help clinician understand the test results. They can also access two algorithms to help with interpretation.

The web-based training in this series is lecture-style, with users clicking through screens of content consisting of onscreen text and photos, audio narration, and knowledge check questions.

For the series, Mind & Media designed an interactive prototype showing two different design templates for APHL to consider and refine one as the final design. Then for each module in the series, Mind & Media refined APHL provided content to better organize and “chunk” it for the web, develop knowledge check questions, and extract an outline to serve as an interactive table of contents. We captured beautiful, high-quality stills of equipment and procedures and edited provided charts and graphs to match the design template. We also recorded narration and edited it into clips for each slide. Finally, we produced the interactive modules, tested and remediated for 508 compliance, and transferred them to APHL (providing technical support as necessary).

Under an APHL/CDC partnership agreement, Mind & Media developed a three-part introductory user training for CDC’s MicrobeNet. MicrobeNet is CDC’s free online database that can be used by public health laboratories and hospitals to identify rare, unusual pathogens, without having to send samples to CDC. MicrobeNet itself is a powerful tool, and laboratorians need training to fully leverage it—yet keeping laboratorians trained is an ongoing challenge because lab turnover is high.

Mind & Media produced a short overall video intro and then three short videos introducing each of MicrobeNet’s powerful database tools. After watching each video, learners can click through a series of MicrobeNet screenshots to “learn by doing.”

Mind & Media produced three modules (on laboratory communication, safety, and quality management) in both English and Spanish for audiences in Central America and the Caribbean, and three modules (on specimen handling and accessioning) in both English and French for audiences with limited resources in central Africa and parts of Asia.

Each 20-minute module uses voiceover narration, onscreen text and graphics, knowledge checks, and interactivity to achieve learning objectives and assess user retention. An interactive table of contents lets users quickly jump to specific material for ease of review.

Horizon Interactive Bronze, Syphilis Case Studies

Over the past seven years, Mind & Media has become a trusted partner to APHL, providing a variety of web-based training services and instruction design consultation for a number of content areas.

Services Provided:

  • Web-Based Training
  • Interface Design
  • Training in Spanish & French
  • Website User Training

Content Areas:

  • Mycobacteriology
  • Molecular Biology
  • False Positives
  • Specimen Handling
  • Lab Management & Safety

Let us help you educate your employees!