Participants in each of the lab skills breakout groups were asked about how laboratory skills could be assessed in either a hands-on or virtual experience. A compilation of the activities that could be assessed in labs is below. The lists are not comprehensive and reflect the focus of the discussions during the meeting.
Examples of activities that can be assessed in each skill/science practice category:
Planning & Delivering Investigations
Describing lab set-up
Making choices regarding next steps
Writing experimental procedures
Collecting data from videos or simulations
Identifying mistakes and errors (e.g. using a "blooper reel")
Considering the impact of changes in the procedures
Analyzing & Interpreting Data
Processing raw data
Describing data analysis
Presenting results (graphs, spectra, etc.)
Identifying sources of error
Writing results section of lab report
Comparing different sets of results
Preparing conclusions section of lab report
Preparing future work section of lab report
Obtaining, Evaluating, & Communicating Information
Using digital lab notebooks
Preparing summary sheets
Preparing lab reports
Giving oral presentations
Examples of assessment methods:
Documentation (e.g. lab notebooks)
Post lab assignments
Virtual lab practicals using
Who can help?
When appropriate, Teaching Assistants (TAs) or Learning Assistants (LAs) can provide formative and summative assessments. Group work may also be used to help streamline assessment.
Disclaimer: This event was designed to explore key questions regarding laboratory experiences and curricula. The opinions or views expressed in these discussions do not necessarily reflect the current statements and guidelines of the American Chemical Society, the views or opinions of ACS’s management or its members, or plans for renewed or revised policies. Chemistry departments seeking ACS Approval must continue to follow the ACS Guidelines for Bachelor’s Degree Programs as stipulated by the Committee on Professional Training, including those for laboratory instruction once their campuses resume face-to-face instruction without social distancing.