NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1156837
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9266
Virtual Laboratories in Science Education: Students' Motivation and Experiences in Two Tertiary Biology Courses
Dyrberg, Nadia Rahbek; Treusch, Alexander H.; Wiegand, Claudia
Journal of Biological Education, v51 n4 p358-374 2017
Potential benefits of simulations and virtual laboratory exercises in natural sciences have been both theorised and studied recently. This study reports findings from a pilot study on student attitude, motivation and self-efficacy when using the virtual laboratory programme Labster. The programme allows interactive learning about the workflows and procedures of biological and biochemical experiments, the operation of relevant apparatuses, including the ability to adjust parameters, and the production of results. The programme was used as supplement to mandatory laboratory exercises in two undergraduate courses (i. microbiology and ii. pharmaceutical toxicology) at the University of Southern Denmark. With a theoretical basis in motivational theories, students' (n = 73) motivation and attitude towards the virtual exercises were evaluated. After completing virtual laboratory cases, the students felt significantly more confident and comfortable operating laboratory equipment, but they did not feel more motivated to engage in virtual laboratories compared to real laboratories. Teachers observed that students were able to participate in discussions at higher levels than in previous years where the programme was not used. The study concludes that virtual laboratories have the potential to improve students' pre-laboratory preparation.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 530 Walnut Street Suite 850, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Tel: 215-625-8900; Fax: 215-207-0050; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Denmark
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A