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Video Review:

Solve the Outbreak

Age Level: Ages: 12 +

Wow, this is one amazing app! The user gets the chance to solve some actual outbreaks which have been solved by the CDC. This calls for some thinking skills, in that the player IS the Disease Detective.

Upon opening the app, the player is given several different cases to choose from, shown in the form of glowing orbs. Tap on an orb to get the basic information. Once a case is chosen you are taken to a page that gives the mission details. You can either accept the mission shown, or go back out and sniff around for another you would rather solve. For example, I just completed a mission that had to do with the West Nile Virus. You are then given several clues, which you must answer in order to go to the next page of clues. Included with each clue is additional information, such as statistics, research information, definitions of terms (which shed more light) and additional type background information, etc. These are all brief and interesting. The player then is asked to correctly answer a question related to the case. Three choices are given, of which the correct choice gives you points. Receiving enough points allows the player to receive awards, my most recent being Public Health Nerd. Based on your points, you either stay at the same rank, or advance up a level. I have played several of the missions and gone from Novice to Sr. Specialist.

I found that if the player only looks at the main clue, and doesn't take time to view additional data provided, it is easy to pick an incorrect answer. I like the fact that one had to "look" at all gathered information in order to make a good decision. One is taken out of the lackadaisical life of a detached observer and becomes one who looks and thinks with data. Not only this, but there are a lot of very interesting things to learn!

Included in the apps is information on topics such as:

  • What is Epidemiology?
  • Who are Disease Detectives?
  • What is an Epi Curve?
  • What is Laboratory Science?
  • Disease Detective Camp (for Middle-School and High-School students)
  • As well as a Glossary of terms

  • Compatible with iPad.

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