Discussion #2 – Not sure about this….

I was teaching laboratory safety to adults, so it was a 6 hour lecture course and a 3 hour practical.  This course has shifted to an online mode where all the 6 hours of lectures were put online, but the 3 hour practical is kept the same. 

In this context one advantage of the iPad is having easy access to the lecture material and access to the net to get more information about the risks associated with the organisms, chemicals and radioactive materials that people are working with.  I do not have an iPad so I don’t know if there is an app for this, but it may be that there is an app to easily discover the risks of working with specific things. 

In conclusion, I really don’t think it would be a practical thing to do right now in this particular context of a classroom, but if a researcher wanted to give their employees access to an iPad so that they could easily access the information that they need, I can see a positive in this.  For instance, instead of carrying around a protocol, the protocols can be uploaded into an iPad and have hyperlinks to other notes and associated protocols.  The only thing is that it becomes a logistical challenge as there is a high probability that the iPad can get contaminated with biological, chemical or radiological materials.  If this is the case, then the lab needs to be cognisant of this and make all their employees aware that these iPads are considered to be “dirty” and that they need to be handled as such. 

Another issue that I thought about that could hopefully be answered by the presenters is whether or not the iPad can be used with gloved hands.  If that is not the case then, researchers would be constantly taking on and removing the gloves to work with the iPad and this could be quite tiresome after a while.  Also, if the iPad can’t be accessed with gloved hands, this could result in the iPad not being used in certain types of laboratories or procedures that require the researcher to always have gloved hands.  Another issue is that certain chemicals can severly damage the expensive iPad. 



Posted in: Week 09: iPad Apps