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      EnLightenment: High resolution smartphone microscopy as an educational and public engagement platform

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          We developed a simple, cost-effective smartphone microscopy platform for use in educational and public engagement programs. We demonstrated its effectiveness, and potential for citizen science through a national imaging initiative, EnLightenment. The cost effectiveness of the instrument allowed for the program to deliver over 500 microscopes to more than 100 secondary schools throughout Scotland, targeting 1000’s of 12-14 year olds. Through careful, quantified, selection of a high power, low-cost objective lens, our smartphone microscope has an imaging resolution of microns, with a working distance of 3 mm. It is therefore capable of imaging single cells and sub-cellular features, and retains usability for young children. The microscopes were designed in kit form and provided an interdisciplinary educational tool. By providing full lesson plans and support material, we developed a framework to explore optical design, microscope performance, engineering challenges on construction and real-world applications in life sciences, biological imaging, marine biology, art, and technology. A national online imaging competition framed EnLightenment ; with over 500 high quality images submitted of diverse content, spanning multiple disciplines. With examples of cellular and sub-cellular features clearly identifiable in some submissions, we show how young public can use these instruments for research-level imaging applications, and the potential of the instrument for citizen science programs.

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          Most cited references 14

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          Smartphone use and smartphone addiction among young people in Switzerland

           Severin Haug (corresponding) ,  Raquel Paz Castro,  Min Kwon (2015)
          Smartphone addiction, its association with smartphone use, and its predictors have not yet been studied in a European sample. This study investigated indicators of smartphone use, smartphone addiction, and their associations with demographic and health behaviour-related variables in young people. A convenience sample of 1,519 students from 127 Swiss vocational school classes participated in a survey assessing demographic and health-related characteristics as well as indicators of smartphone use and addiction. Smartphone addiction was assessed using a short version of the Smartphone Addiction Scale for Adolescents (SAS-SV). Logistic regression analyses were conducted to investigate demographic and health-related predictors of smartphone addiction. Smartphone addiction occurred in 256 (16.9%) of the 1,519 students. Longer duration of smartphone use on a typical day, a shorter time period until first smartphone use in the morning, and reporting that social networking was the most personally relevant smartphone function were associated with smartphone addiction. Smartphone addiction was more prevalent in younger adolescents (15–16 years) compared with young adults (19 years and older), students with both parents born outside Switzerland, persons reporting lower physical activity, and those reporting higher stress. Alcohol and tobacco consumption were unrelated to smartphone addiction. Different indicators of smartphone use are associated with smartphone addiction and subgroups of young people have a higher prevalence of smartphone addiction. The study provides the first insights into smartphone use, smartphone addiction, and predictors of smartphone addiction in young people from a European country, which should be extended in further studies.
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            Mobile phones democratize and cultivate next-generation imaging, diagnostics and measurement tools.

             Aydogan Ozcan (2014)
            In this article, I discuss some of the emerging applications and the future opportunities and challenges created by the use of mobile phones and their embedded components for the development of next-generation imaging, sensing, diagnostics and measurement tools. The massive volume of mobile phone users, which has now reached ~7 billion, drives the rapid improvements of the hardware, software and high-end imaging and sensing technologies embedded in our phones, transforming the mobile phone into a cost-effective and yet extremely powerful platform to run, e.g., biomedical tests, and perform scientific measurements that would normally require advanced laboratory instruments. This rapidly evolving and continuing trend will help us transform how medicine, engineering and sciences are practiced and taught globally.
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              Low-Cost Mobile Phone Microscopy with a Reversed Mobile Phone Camera Lens

              The increasing capabilities and ubiquity of mobile phones and their associated digital cameras offer the possibility of extending low-cost, portable diagnostic microscopy to underserved and low-resource areas. However, mobile phone microscopes created by adding magnifying optics to the phone's camera module have been unable to make use of the full image sensor due to the specialized design of the embedded camera lens, exacerbating the tradeoff between resolution and field of view inherent to optical systems. This tradeoff is acutely felt for diagnostic applications, where the speed and cost of image-based diagnosis is related to the area of the sample that can be viewed at sufficient resolution. Here we present a simple and low-cost approach to mobile phone microscopy that uses a reversed mobile phone camera lens added to an intact mobile phone to enable high quality imaging over a significantly larger field of view than standard microscopy. We demonstrate use of the reversed lens mobile phone microscope to identify red and white blood cells in blood smears and soil-transmitted helminth eggs in stool samples.

                Author and article information

                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Funding AcquisitionRole: MethodologyRole: Project AdministrationRole: Writing – Original Draft PreparationRole: Writing – Review & Editing
                Role: InvestigationRole: Writing – Review & Editing
                Role: InvestigationRole: Writing – Review & Editing
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Writing – Review & Editing
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Funding AcquisitionRole: MethodologyRole: SupervisionRole: Writing – Original Draft PreparationRole: Writing – Review & Editing
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Formal AnalysisRole: Funding AcquisitionRole: InvestigationRole: MethodologyRole: SupervisionRole: VisualizationRole: Writing – Original Draft PreparationRole: Writing – Review & Editing
                Wellcome Open Res
                Wellcome Open Res
                Wellcome Open Res
                Wellcome Open Research
                F1000 Research Limited (London, UK )
                6 November 2017
                : 2
                [1 ]HW Engage, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, UK
                [2 ]Institute of Biological Chemistry, Biophysics and Bioengineering, Scottish Universities Physics Alliance (SUPA), Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, UK
                [3 ]Centre for Doctoral Training in Medical Devices and Health Technologies, Technology and Innovation Centre, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, G1 1XQ, UK
                [4 ]West Calder High School, West Calder, EH55 8QN, UK
                [5 ]Scottish Schools Educational Research Centre (SSERC), Dunfermline, KY11 8UU, UK
                [1 ]Department of Physics, Kyungpook National University, Daegu, South Korea
                [1 ]University of St Andrews, St Andrews, UK
                Author notes

                No competing interests were disclosed.

                Competing interests: No competing interests were disclosed.

                Competing interests: No competing interests were disclosed.

                Copyright: © 2017 Wicks LC et al.

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Funded by: Wellcome Trust
                Award ID: 107076
                Funded by: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
                This work was funded by a Wellcome Trust People Award [107076], with additional support funding from an EPSRC Impact Acceleration award.
                The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
                Research Article
                Public Engagement
                Science & Medical Education


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