Understanding the teaching laboratories: Moving from research to practice

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  • Abstract

    Accepted author manuscript, 591 KB, PDF document

Learning in the lab is distinctively complex, but a closer look into lived experiences of students and teachers provides us with sound arguments for developing the scholarship of teaching and learning in higher education. We investigated how learning in the lab is perceived through empirical studies, by addressing the research questions:
•How do students and teachers perceive high-quality learning in the laboratory?
•How can we use this understanding to develop practice?

Methods and theories
Several theoretical frameworks were adopted to frame our investigations, including Illeris’s multidimensional learning, Latour’s anthropology of science, and Kennedy’s professional learning. These translate into methodological approaches that centre on qualitative research, employing thematic and discourse analyses.

Students perceive high-quality learning in the lab through various phenomenological lenses, viz. pedagogically competent teachers, close and informal contact, dialogic and reflective feedback practice, various ways of connecting the experiment to underlying theory, and seeing the transformation of data from experimental results to text1,2. From teachers’ perspective, the many dimensions of learning in the lab3 can be characterised in terms of progression and competence development4. More knowledge is being generated about how learning unfolds in real-time settings and how it can be assessed in a way that does justice to their complex yet holistic potentials5.

Our studies highlight the importance of developing pedagogical competence of lab instructors in implementing good feedback practice and addressing the unfamiliar pedagogical constructs related to lab learning.

Educational relevance
In a broader context of higher education, the whole project is relevant for realising the importance of investing on faculty’s professional development. This is not only to educate them with evidence-based practice but also foster improvement in existing practice, through close, sustainable collaboration between educational researchers and practitioners.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2023
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventDUN Conference 2023: Learning Environments: Relations & Settings - Kolding, Denmark
Duration: 24 May 202325 May 2023


ConferenceDUN Conference 2023
Internet address

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