Point-of-care (POC) medical diagnostics tests based on instrumented microfluidic chips are instructive and highly-multidisciplinary projects for undergraduate research and Senior Design. Students can apply their knowledge of fluid mechanics, heat transfer, optics, electronics and microcontrollers, materials, prototyping and systems engineering in translating and adapting a laboratory-based test for use in non-traditional venues. We discuss the design, prototyping, and testing of POC lab-on-a-chip (LOC) systems in an educational setting, where undergraduate students develop and demonstrate novel and practical POC tests. This application area serves as an effective gateway to the medical diagnostics field for engineering students, with opportunities for providing sustainable, appropriate, and ‘green’ technology to the developing world where healthcare infrastructure is lacking.

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