Lab Safety: The Interactive Game of Don’t Endanger the Owls

  • Course StartSelf-paced
  • Course Duration2 hours
  • Credit OfferedCertificate Available
  • Tuition$49

Learn the key concepts of safe laboratory practices with this interactive and engaging course.

Course Description

Academic laboratories where hazardous materials are used are potentially dangerous places.  Taking the necessary precautions to avoid unnecessary hazards is paramount for the safety of all involved.

This course element uses gaming technology to help reinforce safe laboratory practices. LabSafety.1x is an online game, called “Don’t Endanger the Owls” designed to introduce the players to the concepts of safe laboratory practices in an adaptable learning environment.  This game will help identify the key areas that the students need to work on and actively improve on those weaknesses.

“Don’t Endanger the Owls” is a collaboration between the instructors of Rice University’s Responsible Conduct of Research Graduate Course,  Rice’s Environmental Health and Safety and HyperWindows Inc. The characters in the game include Wise Owl, Owlet, and the Zombie Squirrels.  Owlet is the student figure and Wise Owl is Owlet’s sage advisor / professor figure.  The Zombie Squirrels are running rampant across the university campus and are infecting all they encounter with their terrible “Zombiegen” – when Zombiegen enters the blood, it causes the person or animal to turn into a Zombie.  Owlet aims to stop the Zombie Squirrels from spreading their Zombiegen by finding an “Anti-Zombiegen” in the lab that will counteract the effects of the Zombiegen.  In order to find the Anti-Zombiegen, Owlet must journey through three lab rooms:  The biology lab, the chemistry lab and the analytical lab.  Along the way, Owlet, with the help of Wise Owl, will learn safe laboratory practices too. In the end, if Owlet follows safe laboratory practices, he finds the Anti-Zombiegen and saves the campus from the Zombiegen outbreak.


Interactive Computer Game, using Html5 & Flash

Course Trailer

Lecture Samples



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Professor Information

Picture of Dr. Stacey Kalovidouris

Dr. Stacey Kalovidouris

Dr. Stacey Kalovidouris is the Executive Director of Health-Related Research and Educational Initiatives in the Office of the Advisor to the Provost.  She is also the Rice’s Institute of Biosciences and Bioengineering (IBB) Special Projects Director.   For IBB, she administers the NIH T32 Cancer Nanotechnology Program between M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and Rice University and […]

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Picture of Dr. Cindy Farach-Carson

Dr. Cindy Farach-Carson

Cindy is a native of Galveston, Texas. She is an active researcher and has a federally and industry funded laboratory focused on tissue engineering, extracellular matrix and cancer biology. She is a pioneer in the use of complex 3D systems for cell and microtissue culture of both normal and cancerous tissues. She is the author […]

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