P781: Introducing inquiry based laboratory modules into an Introductory Chemistry discussion section
Introductory chemistry courses focused on non-science majors that include a discussion/recitation section often lack a laboratory learning component. Traditionally, the discussion section has focused on problem solving skills by having students work through various problem sets while giving individualized attention. To provide a deeper learning environment however, several inquiry based laboratory activities have been utilized in the two hour discussion/recitation section of the Introduction to Chemistry course at the University of Indianapolis. The lab activities were designed within the framework of doing all activities in the lecture classroom. The activities were therefore designed to use everyday objects familiar to students: household chemicals, hardware-store balances, and existing laboratory glassware. Focus is placed on learning concepts in chemistry through hands on activities. The nature of the five in-class laboratory modules and their implementation will be discussed, along with the results of student surveys concerning this new approach. Key questions were asked to determine if inquiry based labs in the discussion section of the course offer a more engaging experience, and deeper learning outcome when compared to the traditional discussion format.