“Technology to the rescue” Reimagining Laboratory Training in Heriot-Watt Malaysia through E-Labinar
Aisyah Zulkipli, Heriot-Watt Malaysia Campus
Alia Nazor, Heriot-Watt Malaysia Campus
Revathi Amathalai, Heriot-Watt Malaysia Campus
The delivery of Labinar, which is an instructor-led and on-campus laboratory training module for lab-based engineering courses, in Heriot-Watt University (HWU) Malaysia has been stopped temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent campus closure. As a result, lab users were not able to equip themselves with the necessary Health & Safety knowledge, lab operations and the like, when lab spaces eventually reopened in October 2021. Recognizing the need to adapt to the new normal, the lab team has piloted a project that employs technology and transformed the labinar, into an online module (called as E-Labinar) that is accessible, flexible, and sustainable. E-Labinar utilizes self-directed learning approach and incorporates elements that address the diversity and hybridity of the lab user’s interests and identities. The authenticity of E-Labinar’s pedagogy and structure will be evaluated in the subsequent milestones by utilizing feedback from the users and programme teams. Through E-labinar, lab users from any locations and time-zones will be able to access the learnings and at the same time will earn a ‘safety passport’ which is a credential that proofs competencies in the pre-requisites before using the lab spaces.
The objectives of this project are to
(1) Support lab users’ learnings with regards to proficiencies in Health & Safety, lab operations and management, as well as competencies to handle lab inventories and equipment,
(2) Provide an accessible, flexible, and sustainable platform for lab users from any locations and time zones to access the learnings,
(3) Foster engineering professional practice.
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