Digital badging in chemistry: safety first!


Chemical Hygiene and Safety Badge for an Upper-Level Laboratory Course.

Andrea Roberts, Alison L. O’Neil, Rachael Barlow, Camille Keeler, William S. Nelligan, and T. David Westmoreland. Journal of Chemical Education 2021 98 (1), 143-149

DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.0c00118

Developing a broadly based positive culture of safety in undergraduate instructional laboratory settings remains a significant challenge for chemical educators. An enhanced safety component has been developed for an upper-level laboratory course based on earning a Chemical Hygiene and Safety badge. The badge requires student engagement in interpreting the standard forms of hazard documentation, performing safety inspections of laboratory spaces, and understanding the principles of hazardous waste disposal. Several associated curricular activities are also described. The impact of the improvements to the safety curriculum was assessed by surveying students who had just completed the course and retrospective evaluations from alumni who took the course. Students who completed the badge reported a greater competence with and confidence in laboratory safety principles.