Essentials of Biobanking

The CTRNet education platform (Essentials of Biobanking) includes 9 online modules designed to provide ‘how-to’ knowledge for researchers and biobankers and ‘what is’ knowledge for stakeholders (e.g. ethics board members). The program was developed by Canadian biobanking professionals and has been endorsed by the International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER). We are please to offer all of our modules in both English and French.

  • The first module is open to anyone interested in learning more about biobanking and is a requirement for all biorepositories enrolled in our certification program.

Module 1 – Overview of Research Biobanking
This online training component for registration in our certification program is designed to provide information on principles, standards and procedures required to establish, maintain, and use a biobank. The intended audience for the course includes laboratory technicians, managers, administrators and researchers involved in health research that utilizes biospecimens.

Module 2 – Governance and Planning
The overall objective of this module is to introduce you to the concept of biobank governance and its importance to the everyday operations of a biobank. Further, this module will give you an overview of key topics in biobank planning including the need for business and continuity planning and important concepts in legacy planning for biobanks.

Module 3 – Ethics, Privacy and Security
This module discusses the importance of ensuring that biospecimens and personal health-related information are used ethically and optimally for research that enhances health and increases knowledge. The ethics of conducting human research are complex and continually evolving. The public and biobank participants need to have confidence that biobanks and researchers will use human biospecimens appropriately and maintain confidentially at all times.

Module 4 – Facility Design and Safety
This module provides you with information on the fundamental physical components of a biobank facility. It also covers the importance of biobank facility design and security in maintaining a safe environment.

Module 5 – Quality Management and Process Improvement
This module provides general information on the importance of Quality Management and Process Improvement for biobanks. You will learn how a Quality Management System (QMS) improves efficiency, accuracy and quality of biobank processes. Creation and maintenance of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and education and training of personnel will also be covered.

Module 6 – Informed Consent
The purpose of this module is to identify and describe the processes related to informed consent in the biobank setting. The module will cover the required elements of an informed consent form and what to do in situations when informed consent is difficult to obtain.

Module 7 – Biospecimen Collection and Processing
This module provides an overview of the types of biospecimens commonly collected and stored in a biobank and the procedures involved in biospecimen collection and processing.

Module 8 – Biospecimen Storage and Distribution
This module provides an overview of proper biospecimen storage, retrieval and sample distribution procedures for a biobank.

Module 9 – Data Systems and Records Management
This module provides an overview of the types of data systems and records management systems used for storing biospecimen data. The overall objective is to provide you with key terminology and standard processes as well as inform you of any issues that may be involved with data collection, access or retention. This module also covers data security and confidentiality.

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