FEB 06, 2014 03:00 PM PST

More training, fewer animals. The challenge of developing an e learning program in Latin American Countries

  • Manager, Laboratory Animal Facility, Professor, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Chile
      She obtained her university LATG degree in 2000 at Buenos Aires University, Argentina. He worked as responsible of the experimental area at the Laboratory Animal Facility, Faculty of Exact and Natural Sciences, UBA until 2004, when she moved to Chile to manage the Genomics Unit at Centro de Estudios Cientficos. She is currently the Director of the Laboratory Animal Facility and member of the Bioethics and Biosafety Committe at Biological Science Faculty of the Pontificial Catholic University in Santiago, Chile. In 2008 co funded Aula Virtual Bioterio, a Laboratory Animal Training group focalized on e-learning training, since then the group organized webinars and courses for developing and Spanish speaking countries. She is also member of the Governing Board of ASOCHICAL (Chilean Association of Laboratory Animal Sciences). Since 2012 was elected as member of the Bioethics Committee at FONDECyT program of National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research (CONICYT). She is currently Vicepresident of FESSACAL (Federacion de Sociedades Sudamericanas de Ciencias en Animales de Laboratorio). She is actively involved in education and technical training of people willing to work with laboratory animals.


    Informatics and internet are widely accepted tools in education and research. In the past decades new teaching and learning strategies have been developed and implemented. E-learning was defined as the production, distribution and use of electronic content for educational purposes. Many institutions and organizations in Europe and USA offer Laboratory Animal Science (LAS) training including computer assisted learning (CAL) or online tools in their teaching curriculum and as educational resources, for example the AALAS Learning Library and NC3Rs web. While these programs are very useful to introduce necessary theoretical background and skills, most of them are in English and based only in audiovisual materials. The aim of this presentation is to show the contribution of this methodology in the harmonization of the humane treatment of experimental animals mainly in Latin America countries, where there is still a strong need of animals in research and education. By other hand, one of the most important requisite worldwide is that personnel who work with laboratory animals are well trained with special emphasis in the 3Rs principles. Moreover, there is a lack of harmonized training guidelines and poor offer of training. We are going to show why and how a well-planned e-learning program is a valuable tool to mediate knowledge in LAS training between participants from mainly Latin America and developing countries. Our experience shows that replacement and reduce of animals in a first approach is possible with this education strategy.

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