Quick summary

  • Clinical reasoning toolkit released. Includes 2 new authoring blocks:
  • Observation UX revamp. Observations have now been separated from Chat.
  • Overhaul of Comment/Chat system. Complete visual update including chat-box specific coloring for self, teammates, and teacher. Comment/Chat users can also respond to specific comments left in chat.
  • Evaluation gradebook integration. Scores coming from evaluation blocks will now show in the Allele gradebook, as well as flow through automatically to the LMS if the LMS integration has been established.

What’s new in this release?

Clinical reasoning toolkit

The long-awaited clinical/diagnostic reasoning toolkit is now available in Allele!

Based on extensive research (citations), the component tools help educators scaffold and scale their ability to teach clinical reasoning in the classroom. Often, students are presented a patient case where they are asked to demonstrate their diagnostic reasoning critical thinking process. Throughout the case, students will capture observations that will be used to structure their diagnostic path.

We often see these cases structured in a way where learners are presented with:

  1. Patient history, signalment, and a physical examination
  2. Lab data where they analyze data and capture observations for any abnormalities
  3. A diagnostic path where they drag in captured observations from the previous phases to form a structured diagnostic path.
  4. Review their diagnostic path directly against an expert’s diagnostic path
  5. Assess their learning

New block: Lab Chart

A lab chart block is a phase authoring component that allows the creator to insert a specialized table that can be used to display laboratory data to learners.

Typically, students will be looking through different lab test results, analyzing the results, and identifying any abnormalities.

The lab chart block can be found in the “Specialized” section of the block authoring pane.

New block: Diagnostic Path

A diagnostic path block is a phase authoring component that allows the creator insert a hierarchical input area for students to organize observations into a structured diagnostic pathway.

The diagnostic path block can be found in the “Specialized” section of the block authoring pane


Observation user experience overhaul

Observations and Chat functionality have been split into two distinct sections on the right-navigation panel for learners. Particularly with the addition of the clinical reasoning toolkit and importance observations play in the diagnostic path, we wanted to make sure learners had clarity on how to manage observations vs. chat/comments.

Now, when learners highlight text within any phase, it will automatically add the selected text to their observation list.

Each observation taken has a type of: “Observation”, “History”, or “Data”. Depending on the type of observation, a small icon will show up indicating the type.

Authors can configure the ”observation type” for a phase in the builder by using the “Selected text type” option on the right navigation panel.


Comment/Chat user experience overhaul

Now that observations and comments have been separated, it was time to make the commenting functionality more useful and intuitive.

Comment/chat boxes now are easily identifiable by color based on the user that created the entry.

  • Self: light blue
  • Teammate: light grey
  • Teacher: light green

Additionally, chat users can respond to specific entries by pressing the “Reply to comment” button.

Research citations

A Novel Educational Tool for Teaching Diagnostic Reasoning and Laboratory Data Interpretation to Veterinary (and Medical) Students

Bender HS & Danielson, JA

Publication Link

The Diagnostic Pathfinder: Ten years of using technology to teach diagnostic problem solving

Danielson, JA, Mills, EM, Vermeer, PJ, and Bender, HS

Publication Link

Characteristics of a Cognitive Tool that Helps Students Learn Diagnostic Problem Solving

Danielson J.A., Mills, E.M, Vermeer, P.J., Preast, V.A., Young, K.M., Christopher, M.M., George, J.W., Wood, D.R. and Bender, H.S.

Publication Link

Helping Learners Gain Diagnostic Problem Solving Skills: Specific Aspects of the Diagnostic Pathfinder Software Tied to Learning Outcomes

Danielson JA, Bender HS, Mills EM, Vermeer PJ, Preast VA

Publication Link

Student perceptions of problem-solving skills and evaluation of a web-based environment for case-study work in landscape horticulture

Danielson JA, Bender HS, Mills EM, Vermeer PJ, Lockee BB

Publication Link

A Tool for Helping Veterinary Students Learn Diagnostic Problem Solving

Woline, T. and A.M. VanDerZanden

Publication Link

Mechanism-based diagnostic reasoning: thoughts on teaching introductory clinical pathology

Bender HS, Lockee BB, Danielson JA, Mills EM, Boon GD, Burton JK, Vermeer PJ, Zimmerman KL, Hilmer KM

Publication Link