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A one-week introductory course in clinical biochemistry and research based on renal function testing in man
  1. K. D. G. Edwards,
  2. Elizabeth A. Curtis,
  3. Lynn M. Stoker
  1. Keith Kirkland Renal Unit, Medical Research Department, Kanematsu Memorial Institute, Sydney Hospital, Sydney, NSW, Australia


    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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