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Design considerations for virtual laboratories: A comparative study of two virtual laboratories for learning about gas solubility and colour appearance

Stahre Wästberg, Beata, (författare)
Department of Computer Science & Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology/University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden
Eriksson, Thommy, (författare)
Department of Computer Science & Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology/University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden
Karlsson, Göran, 1954- (författare)
Högskolan i Halmstad, Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS)
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Sunnerstam, Maria, (författare)
PIL Pedagogical Development & Interactive Learning, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden
Axelsson, Michael, (författare)
Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden
Billger, Monica, (författare)
Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden
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Högskolan i Halmstad Akademin för lärande, humaniora och samhälle. Centrum för lärande, kultur och samhälle (CLKS). (creator_code:org_t)
Göteborgs universitet Utbildningsvetenskapliga fakulteten. Pedagogisk utveckling och interaktivt lärande (PIL). 
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Göteborgs universitet Naturvetenskapliga fakulteten. Institutionen för biologi och miljövetenskap. 
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Ingår i: Education and Information Technologies. - 13602357 .- 15737608. ; 24:3, s. 2059-2080
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  • Tidskriftsartikel (refereegranskat)
Abstract Ämnesord
  • Building a virtual laboratory for teaching and learning is a highly complex process, incorporating diverse areas such as interaction design, visualisation, and pedagogy. This article focuses on the production and implementation issues that were found in the comparison of two different virtual laboratory projects, and discuss which design considerations can be drawn from these observations. Two web-based virtual laboratories - the Gas Laboratory and the Virtual Colour Laboratory - were developed independently of each other within two different content areas. The laboratories share considerable overlaps in goals and production circumstances. Through a comparison of production and outcome, similar problems related to design, development and implementation were observed. The research uses a mixed method approach combining quantitative pre- and post-tests for assessments, qualitative surveys, and qualitative, ethnographic observations and interviews. By comparing the background material, five design challenges for developing virtual laboratories are identified: 1) how to balance ambitions with available resources; 2) how to balance intended levels of user interaction with exploratory freedom; 3) how to find appropriate levels of realism depending on target group; 4) how to choose between mimicking real world appearance and enhanced features; and 5) how to find the best learning situation for the virtual laboratory. To meet these challenges, the following design considerations are proposed: Guide the design work with a clear understanding of purpose and context; select appropriate technology to ensure efficient design and media usage; select level of realism considering purpose and end users; and provide learning guides before and after the virtual lab session. © 2019, The Author(s).


SAMHÄLLSVETENSKAP  -- Utbildningsvetenskap (hsv//swe)
SOCIAL SCIENCES  -- Educational Sciences (hsv//eng)
TEKNIK OCH TEKNOLOGIER  -- Annan teknik -- Interaktionsteknik (hsv//swe)
ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY  -- Other Engineering and Technologies -- Interaction Technologies (hsv//eng)
SAMHÄLLSVETENSKAP  -- Utbildningsvetenskap -- Lärande (hsv//swe)
SOCIAL SCIENCES  -- Educational Sciences -- Learning (hsv//eng)
SAMHÄLLSVETENSKAP  -- Medie- och kommunikationsvetenskap -- Mänsklig interaktion med IKT (hsv//swe)
SOCIAL SCIENCES  -- Media and Communications -- Human Aspects of ICT (hsv//eng)
HUMANIORA  -- Konst -- Design (hsv//swe)
HUMANITIES  -- Arts -- Design (hsv//eng)
NATURVETENSKAP  -- Data- och informationsvetenskap -- Människa-datorinteraktion (interaktionsdesign) (hsv//swe)
NATURAL SCIENCES  -- Computer and Information Science -- Human Computer Interaction (hsv//eng)


Virtual laboratories
Cloned and enhanced laboratories
User evaluation
Design considerations
Interactive learning environments
Interdisciplinary projects

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