Monthly Archives: January 2016

New development funding for OpenLabyrinth

Excellent news! We have been very fortunate to receive new funding for the further development of OpenLabyrinth as an educational research platform.

The O’Brien Institute of Public Health, the Department of Family Medicine and the Office of PostGraduate Medical Education at The University of Calgary Cumming School of Medicine, have made a combined contribution towards a Catalyst Grant.

The intent of catalyst grants is to improve the infrastructure and tools so that we can springboard forwards to applying for broader research funding. This catalyst grant project is being directed by the Office of Health & Medical Education Scholarship (OHMES), our newly reconstituted education research group.

The grant opens up some interesting new potential functional areas for OpenLabyrinth and will be particularly focused on activity metrics, using the Experience API (xAPI). OHMES members are working closely with the Medbiquitous Learning Experience Working Group, which was just announced a few days ago, on creating a set of ANSI standards to support such research.

Turk Talk in PeerJ

We are getting lots of interest in our new Turk Talk function in OpenLabyrinth, the new human-computer hybrid approach to natural language processing.

PeerJ has just accepted a draft article as a Pre-Print.

Topps D, Cullen ML, Sharma N, Ellaway RH. (2016) Putting the ghost in the machine: exploring human-machine hybrid virtual patient systems for health professional education. PeerJ PrePrints 4:e1659v1


This article will go forwards for full peer-review but we were keen to do an early release to encourage others who might be interested in collaborating in this area of educational research.

Medbiquitous announces new Learning Experience group

Mebiquitous “is a not-for-profit, international group of professional associations, universities, commercial, and governmental organizations seeking to develop and promote technology standards for the health professions that advance lifelong learning, continuous improvement, and better patient outcomes.”

These guys do great work that underpins many collaborative initiatives in healthcare. The University of Calgary Cumming School of Medicine is a proud and active member.

On 20 Jan 2016, Medbiq announced a new working group, the Learning Experience group.

“Education analytics offers an opportunity to better track learner educational activities and to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of the healthcare workforce as well as factors associated with higher performance…

…The new Learning Experience Working Group will develop a set of Experience API (xAPI) profiles to provide guidance around collecting data on specific types of healthcare learning activities. The scope includes simulations (Virtual patients, mannekin-based simulations, preceptor-reviewed simulations, virtual worlds/games, Standardized Patients, etc) and clinical training activities and experiences.”

Members of the OpenLabyrinth Development Consortium are actively involved in this initiative and in Medbiquitous.

And just a quick heads up, the Medbiquitous Annual Conference is coming up: May 16-17, 2016 in Baltimore. A very innovative and collaborative group – come join us.

Snazzy new home page

Well, that took way longer than it should have. Sorry about that, guys n’ gals – a combination of technical glitches and being pulled away to research grants etc etc.

We hope you like this new look and improved access to help, examples and most of all, free trial accounts on our demo server.

Now that we are running the web server in-house, and have much greater control over how it is linked to other platforms, we hope to bring you a variety of new aggregated services that tie into the OpenLabyrinth education research platform.