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Student-Centred Teaching in Laboratories Supported with Online Components in the Orientation Program MINTgruen
Citation key Schmitt_conf_2017
Author Schmitt Franz-Josef; Schröder Christian;Yenice Campbell Züleyha;Moldenhauer Marcus;Friedrich Thomas
Pages 1-32
Year 2017
Volume EDU2017
Publisher Athens Institute for Education and Research
Abstract Research-based learning motivates students to identify with different subjects. The orientation program MINTgrün at Technische Universität Berlin offers two study semesters for open choices of teaching modules, including a series of specially designed laboratories covering topics like robotics, construction, environmental research, programming, mathematics, gender studies and chemistry. MINTgrün is open for students of any interest. The online project laboratory in chemistry (OPLChem) is one example of the MINTgrün labs. OPLChem follows the concept of research-based learning and allows for a free choice of an experiment drafted by the students themselves after participating in impulse talks that report on former experiments conducted by the students of the preceding semester. In the OPLChem, the students turned out to be highly motivated in choosing experiments of personal interest, which were often related to sustainability, such as decontamination of oil spills on water, production of biological plastics, quantification of heavy metals in tap water, comestibles and dietary supplements, investigation of electric bacteria, or the optimization of oxygen generation by algae, just to name a few examples. In addition, we developed a series of teaching videos for basic experiments in chemistry showing how to handle the experimental setups correctly. Such videos are identified as helpful tools to reduce the effort for supervision during the internships, while the quality of the experimental work of the students improves. The online materials offer important theory, show the chemicals, explain the preparation of samples and the configuration of complex setups, give safety instructions, and introduce programs for data evaluation. The concept of the OPLChem allows the students to produce their own videos as a support of their written protocols. In that way, a growing pool of new videos of various experiments is established and the students publish these videos, their protocols, and additional materials on their own blogs for the public.
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