Laboratory work will suffer the most in the shift to remote learning, as students lose out on the chance to conduct hands-on work. Many institutions and faculty find themselves at a loss when it comes to designing virtual variants that can effectively replicate the hands-on experience provided by in-person lab courses. Faced with a cancellation of her two-week Biology field course, Dawn Bazely, Biology Professor at York University, went back to the drawing board to reinvent her syllabus for virtual delivery. In the process, she created a science-from-home lab kit to enable students to simulate their fieldwork at home, which was very well received. Professor Bazely’s experience designing a successful six-week virtual course can provide valuable insights into troubleshooting the transition from offline to online.
The session will focus on lessons learned from the process of designing and executing the virtual course, translating them into recommendations for fellow faculty and lab coordinators. Attendees will hear about key takeaways from Dawn’s reimagining of the lab-at-home experience and her collaborative efforts with her colleagues, learning more about the dos and don’ts of virtual lab programs. Dawn will also speak about what she envisions as the biggest challenges for the upcoming fall semester, particularly for remote lab work, and how faculty can best tackle them.