Lab Safety Management Certificate
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Lab Safety / Lab Safety Management Certificate

Lab Safety Management Certificate

The Lab Safety Management Certificate will provide the knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to make it easier to manage the safety of your lab(s). Learn how to mitigate risks, improve safety culture, and manage your lab’s EHS systems in a three-stream, 12-course certificate program. The first eight courses are available now, and the remaining four courses will roll out in early 2024. Those who purchase a full certificate will be notified and receive access to the new courses as they become available at no additional cost. Those completing the entire program will earn the Lab Safety Management Certificate.

Curriculum content

  • Safety culture can be thought of simply as how we do safety around here. Clearly, there is more to it such as group norms and behaviors. Culture has many advantages over compliance-driven approaches. Safety culture starts at the top by leaders setting examples, being present, and caring for everyone’s wellbeing. A well led team will follow. Learning Outcomes: Describe what culture, safety culture, and a culture of safety mean, Explain how safety leadership affects safety culture, Compare and contrast compliance vs. culture-driven approaches, List at least four benefits of safety culture, Defend the efforts needed to impact safety culture.
    • Lesson Safety Culture

  • An effective leader instills and facilitates psychological safety which enables everyone to be effectively heard. A complementary technique is safety management by walking around. In addition to leaders, teams benefit from safety management systems (prescribed methods) and standards (set by non-governmental entities). True learning organizations that learn from their mistakes benefit greatly from these strategies. Learning Outcomes: Explain the need and benefits of psychological safety, Describe how a true learning organization functions, Compare and contrast a safety management standard vs. a safety management system, Defend the greater benefits of effectiveness over efficiency as it relates to safety and risk.
  • To borrow and bend a quote, what we choose to measure, matters. We can measure lagging indicators, like injuries, leading indicators, like risk assessments, or both. It is challenging to decide what objectives and key results, and key performance indicators to collect, measure, track, report, emphasize, and manage toward. This course will help you decide which ones, why, and how best to do so. Learning Outcomes: List at least 10 safety or risk metrics, Describe how objectives and key results relate to safety KPIs, List at least four KPIs for safety or risk, List at least five examples of both lagging and leading indicators, Compare and contrast lagging vs. leading indicators, Defend the greater benefits of leading indicators.
  • Risk is a human construct helping us stay safe and alive. There is so much more to risk than the simple equation, risk equals severity times exposure times probability [R = S x E x P]. There are many tools and techniques to help us determine risk. One used in labs is called RAMP. We’ll explore all of this and more. Learning Outcomes: Define hazard, safety, and risk, Explain a 2-level and a 3-level risk matrix, Compare and contrast possibility vs. probability, List at least five risk assessment methods or tools, Describe the RAMP risk assessment method.
  • Once we’ve decided we have significant risk and assessed it properly, we need to determine some suitable and adequate means to mitigate or reduce our risks. As we detailed in our Technical Topics stream of courses, the hierarchy of controls is the primary means by which we decide how and in what order to implement hazard control methods. We always want to control the hazard, as much as possible, before it reaches us. Hint: PPE isn’t at the top of the order. Learning Outcomes: List the steps of the hierarchy of controls in order, Explain why PPE is so important given its relative position in the hierarchy, Describe the uses of isolation and work practices as two levels that don’t always appear in the hierarchy, List at least three benefits of collaborating to help implement hazard controls, Describe how a multi-disciplinary team helps develop more effective approaches.
  • Materials move in and out of labs on a daily basis. These include chemicals, biologicals, and many other substances, equipment, and supplies. The scientific process changes many of these things along the way. This is often what is described in greater detail as the life cycle. As part of sustainability efforts, we often track what goes in and what comes out in an effort to reduce consumption, waste, and carbon footprint. Learning Outcomes: Describe the life cycle approach and its benefit to safety and risk, Explain how purchasing practices can improve and remove safety and risk, Defend the benefits of recycling efforts even when the market for them is problematic, List at least five negative outcomes from lab wastes.
  • Biosafety and biosecurity take steps to prevent harm to anyone or anything (animals, plants, research, etc.) by a bioactive material from the lab. Biosafety prevents exposures to lab staff inside the lab. No one gets sick from their work. Biosecurity is preventing exposures to the population and environment outside the lab. What happens inside the lab, stays in the lab. Biosafety and biosecurity use risk groupings and biosafety levels to categorize the pathogenicity risks and required controls. Learning Outcomes: Show the next steps for improved biosafety/biosecurity in their lab, Compare and contrast biosafety/biosecurity at a basic level, Describe the four biosafety levels, List several of the groups of biohazardous materials requiring approvals and oversight, List the hierarchy of hazard controls, in order, with examples, Describe the roles of lab staff as they apply to biosafety.
  • Chemical hygiene focuses on the hazards and risks presented by the variety of chemicals used in labs, research, and science. Some of these risks are obvious, and others are hidden. The six chemical hygiene categories covered are flammables/combustibles, corrosives, oxidizers, reactives, asphyxiants, and toxins. Learning Outcomes: List and describe each of the major hazard categories, Explain the four routes of entry into the body and at least four different target organ toxicities, including an example toxic substance for each organ, Apply the hierarchy of hazard controls to chemical hazards, Give examples of different hazard control approaches, List the purposes of typical lab safety documents, Describe the roles that contribute to safety, List other useful chemical hygiene resources.
  • If there is one risk that we all face together, it’s a fire. Life safety is mostly about fires, exits, chemical maximum allowable quantities, building codes, and walking and working surfaces. Other chemical hazards are covered in the chemical hygiene course. This course is about helping everyone get out alive. Learning Outcomes: Explain the basis of life safety codes, Defend the need for improved and consistent risk assessment throughout a process or experiment, including any changes to it, Describe at least three human factors involved with fires, Explain how maximum allowable quantities can impact an entire floor of labs, List several building occupancy classifications and state how it impacts lab construction and use, Describe how exits play a critical role in life safety, Defend the value of several engineering controls for safety/risk, as well as increased productivity of space, Identify who typically has final say over life safety decisions.
  • Physical hazards include the risks from electrical, mechanical, noise, temperature, vibration, ergonomics, and slips, trips, and falls. Many of these hazard types don’t get sufficient attention—they’re invisible, hidden in equipment, or rare. However, they are critical and can be both a frequent and devastating source of harm. Learning Outcomes: Explain why physical hazards are often overlooked, Describe six types of physical hazards, excluding the most recognized hazards in labs (biological, chemical, and radiation), Determine how to control physical hazards effectively using the hierarchy of hazard controls, Assess how to prevent incidents and injuries involving lesser-known hazards in lab settings, Make the case for cross-training as an effective strategy to prevent ergonomic musculoskeletal disorders.
  • Radiation is a complex and technical topic. This course covers the various types of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation, how they differ, and their effects. There are several types of ionizing radiation with significant health effects. It requires greater means of control, including time, distance, and shielding and the concept of ALARA or “as low as reasonably achievable.” Nonionizing radiation also presents risks, mostly to the eyes and skin. The controls needed are focused on our outer bodies and are less complex. Learning Outcomes: Compare and contrast ionizing and nonionizing radiation effects, List the types of ionizing radiation and describe their effects, Explain the different ionizing controls, including time-distance-shielding, List the types of nonionizing radiation and describe their effects, Explain the different nonionizing controls, including eye and skin protection.
  • Sometimes, odd perceptions of risk drive our decision-making or what is called, “judgment under uncertainty”. Our affective risk system drives decisions over our analytical one. Similarly, our fast thinking makes many decisions in the moment. Communicating all of this and our perceptions is a challenge. Learning Outcomes: Compare and contrast our analytical (logical) risk system vs. our experiential (affective) risk system, Describe our weirdly, widely, and wildly varying risk perceptions, List at least seven cognitive biases that affect our decisions, Compare and contrast system 1 (fast) vs. system 2 (slow) thinking, Explain the meaning behind the phrase “judgment under uncertainty,” Defend the use of stories for risk communicating risk.