❖ How do I achieve experiential learning outcomes from my laboratory classes?
Here are some ideas adapted from Indiana University’s site on continuity of learning:
Take part of the lab online: Many lab activities require students to become familiar with certain procedures, and only physical practice of those processes will do. In such cases, consider if there are other parts of the lab experience you could take online (for example, video demonstrations of techniques, online simulations, analysis of data, other pre- or post-lab work).
Investigate virtual labs: Online resources and virtual tools might help replicate the experience of some labs (for example, virtual dissection, night sky apps, video demonstrations of labs, simulations).
Provide raw data for analysis: In cases where the lab includes both collection of data and its analysis, consider showing how the data can be collected, and then provide some raw sets of data for students to analyze.
Explore alternate software access: Some labs require specialized software that students cannot install on their own computers. We may be able to host this software using UMass Lowell’s VLabs system, which students can access with just a web browser. Please be in touch with Steve Athanas to discuss this.
Increase interaction in other ways: Sometimes labs are more about having time for direct student interaction, so consider other ways to replicate that level of contact if it is only your lab that is out of commission.