The LabXchange platform will offer digital instruction and virtual lab experiences to high school and college students, enabling them to gain meaningful exposure to the scientific process as well as online networking opportunities focused on collaboration and mentoring.
To be built on the edX online learning platform, which currently has more than thirty-five million users, LabXChange will build and test prototypes beginning this summer, with the final platform expected to launch globally in 2019. Amgen scientists with industry experience will serve in key advisory roles to ensure the success of the project.
"There are many millions of students who, as a result of economic or geographic limitations, simply do not have access to one of the most central aspects of being a scientist, which is working in a laboratory," said Robert Lue, principal investigator of LabXchange and professor of molecular and cellular biology at Harvard. "LabXchange addresses this issue with a platform that integrates dynamic experimental simulations with background curriculum and social networking — all created to more effectively expose students of varying backgrounds to the authentic and engaging experience of scientific discovery."