Among the leaders in classroom technology is the Denmark-based global e-learning platform Labster. Founded in 2011, the company puts its focus primarily on revolutionizing how science is taught to students by providing a Virtual Laboratory as a supportive curriculum-based e-tool. The Virtual Laboratory enables students to work with real-life situations in an online environment that simulates reality. Labster designs its labs based on mathematical algorithms that support open-ended investigations and combined them with gamification features like story-telling, a scoring system, and an immersive 3D universe. All these elements stimulate the natural curiosity in students by joining the dots between real-life case stories and science. One of the pioneering factors that validate the use of virtual labs is that they are not limited by the restraints of time and cost restraints of an ordinary lab. Students, while working on a virtual lab, can experiment with cutting-edge lab equipment in a safe learning environment, and perform experiments that are not possible in a face-to-face interaction of a classroom. Labster also received more than 10m USD in grant funding for developing and providing cutting-edge R&D projects.
The company is run by a highly skilled staff throughout its offices in Denmark, Switzerland, USA, and Indonesia, and headed by CEO and Founder Mads Tvillinggaard Bonde, a former Harvard student who was inspired by the use of flight simulators.
Serving for more than eight years now, Labster has successfully developed a strong clientele that comprises some of the top educational organizations of the world. Among the international partners who are using the Labster labs include the California State University, Harvard, Gwinnett Technical College, University of New England, MIT, Exeter University, University of New Haven, Stanford, Trinity College, University of Hong Kong and Berkeley. Prof. Tom Haffie from Western University in Canada is among the many clients of Labster. He implemented the services of Labster to provide students with a digital bridge between practicals and tutorials. He explains, “We use Labster to provide context and help the students see how what they are learning fits into important real-world situations. Labster’s case stories help the students relate the content and skills they are learning in school to their real life.”
Similar is the case for Harmony Clayton, a biology teacher from Taylors College in Western Australia. She has been using Labster as a part of her course for the last two years to improve the learning experience of her students. She says, “Personally, from a teacher’s perspective, I look forward to the sessions, because I see more liveliness and activity than I do in most of my other lessons.”
The underlying trend is that sophisticated, nextgeneration tools and virtual environments can transform science from something challenging to an engaging experience, overcoming difficulties both in the learning and research spaces
Labster offers over 50 biotechnology lab simulations designed particularly for Collegiate and University audiences. The company has also received many awards that include the iGEM competition under the sponsorship of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and two Venture Cups, among others. The company aims to continue leveraging technology and create science training software with increased motivation and learning outcomes.