Session S16 (Sunday, 3:40pm, Thomas 120)

P94: Maintaining the "inquiry" in guided inquiry labs

Jenine Maeyer (University of Pennsylvania, USA)

Over the past three years, we have been transforming the entire general chemistry laboratory program at the University of Pennsylvania with new experiments, renovations to the lab space, new equipment, and improved TA training. The lab curriculum has been completely revised to incorporate skill building exercises, guided inquiry labs, and projects in place of traditional verification labs. Although it is expected that student experiences across different sections of the course will vary depending on their teaching assistant, we have experienced a number of issues with maintaining the desired level of inquiry among different sections. In fact, some of the experiments intended as “inquiry” experiments actually resemble a verification lab in practice. In this presentation, issues that have arisen associated with the varying levels of inquiry will be discussed, as well as some of the steps we have taken thus far through TA training and improved experiment design to address the problems.


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