Last week our team members, Clark Paul and April Krishnan, had the pleasure of co-hosting an on-campus workshop with our users at University of San Francisco and Professor Mary Jane Niles.

We love working with our community in person. Bringing users together fosters an exchange of best practices which in turn makes us all better researchers and digital lab notebook users. If you want to host a workshop at your institution or lab, send us an email!

Check out this Q&A with Professor Niles to get a sense of what these workshops are all about.

What were your goals with this workshop?

My goals were (1) to expose local college instructors to aspects of electronic lab notebooks -in particular, the LabArchives platform, given that is the one with which I am familiar with. (2) To offer a positive, interesting and interactive experience for the attendees. (3) To learn how others use LabArchives. (4) To learn how I might do more, or do things differently, with the system.

Instructors and students alike came together to learn about and share tips and tricks for using ELNs.

What have been the benefits so far in your work with LabArchives?

Saving paper, providing descriptive photos within a procedure, students gaining familiarity with online lab notebooks, which are being adopted more and more in industry. Neatness is not an issue, the lab notebooks are well organized, and it is quite easy to alter and update protocols.

Who did you work with at LabArchives to set up this workshop?

I worked with Clark Paul, and was pleased to meet April Krishnan who assisted with the workshop.

Who presented? What did they talk about?

Clark gave an overview of the LabArchives platform, I talked about how I used this system in two different lab courses that I teach (Immunology, and Molecular Genetics), another USF instructor, Sohiel Memarsadeghi, talked about his approach in his course, Interdisciplinary Life Science. Interestingly, these three courses (my two courses, and Sohiel’s course), use LabArchives in three different ways. A USF student then gave her perspective (see below, highlight).

Wendy Riggs, from College of the Redwoods, gave a very interesting presentation on how she uses LabArchives in her online biology lecture/lab course. Natalie Stringer, from the LabArchives team, talked about using LabArchives embedded in learning management systems such as Canvas.

Everyone who presented at this workshop is using LabArchives in a way that is unique to their purposes.

Highlights of the day?

The highlight of the day was the student’s presentation: She did an excellent job describing the positives and negatives of online lab notebooks, especially given that she has used LabArchives in two classes here at USF.

‘Student’s perspective’ on working with digital lab notebooks and LabArchives.

How does working with users/LabArchives staff in person help with the overall LabArchives experience?

It’s always nice to have face to face interactions rather than interactions solely through email. As noted, it was nice working with Clark, and I am very pleased to have April Krishnan as the representative for my geographical area.

Thanks to everyone who contributed to this workshop! We are looking forward to hosting more real time workshops in 2019! Send us an email or leave a comment if you’d like to see us at your institution this year!

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