A one-week introductory course in clinical biochemical and research techniques was devised to provide a brief but concentrated experience for interested persons. Urinary creatinine concentrations were measured to demonstrate acceptable degrees of precision of a method (co-efficients of variation, 0·5-2·4%), and to give confidence by favourable comparison with routine laboratory results (day 2, mean 0·95 vs 0·94 mg/ml). Subjects then submitted themselves to one-day renal function testing, and subsequently measured their own urinary acid-base parameters by autotitrimetry and glomerular filtration rates by spectrophotometry. The values obtained for the latter fell within the normal range (85-124% of normal, corrected for age and surface area). Finally, statistical methods and a small desk-top computer were employed to compute linear regression equations, correlation coefficients, and t tests from the week's data. The course contained a number of features which stimulated learning, including active participation by the learner, and the use of meaningful materials to induce both desire for success and tolerance of mistakes.
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