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Teacher Testimonial
Piloting a New Online Course with New Carolina Distance Learning® Lab Kits
by Distance Learning Staff
Dr. Christina Ragain successfully pilots a new online General Chemistry course using new Carolina Distance Learning® chemistry lab kits.

Name: Dr. Christina Ragain

Role: Associate Professor of Chemistry

Institution: Southeast Missouri State University, Cape Girardeau, MO

Challenge: Providing students with relevant chemistry experiments that they can successfully complete at home.

Solution: Carolina Distance Learning® ready-to-ship chemistry lab kits

Results: The ready-to-ship chemistry lab kits provide Dr. Ragain with labs that support her General Chemistry course objectives, are easy to implement and use, and engage students.

Piloting a New Online Course

The spring of 2021 found Dr. Christina Ragain planning for a summer General Chemistry course at Southeast Missouri State University. The course was to be fully remote for the first time, so she also needed to develop a series of hands-on lab investigations for it. Like many science professors during the pandemic, Dr. Ragain was concerned about providing her students with meaningful lab investigations that they could successfully complete at home and that also match the course curriculum.

At that same time, Carolina Distance Learning® was adding more ready-to-ship lab kits to their lineup. After discussing the chemistry kits with Carolina, Dr. Ragain was able to evaluate the investigations and materials they included. She found them well suited for her upcoming class and confidently adopted the kits.

Using the New Lab Kits

The first benefit became apparent even before the course began. “Just like in any class, some students wait until the last minute to get their books and other materials,” Dr. Ragain explains. “The fact that Carolina ships the kits directly to students helps minimize those type of delays.”

As students did the labs, Dr. Ragain also did them with the same kits that her students were using. She considers this an important part of being able to effectively guide her students through the lessons. Her students found the lab instructions easy to understand and follow, which built their confidence.

Dr. Ragain was happy with the lab equipment and supplies the kits contained. “They are the same quality that we use in on-campus classes,” she reports. She also found the student and teacher support materials, including video clips, student documents, and teacher materials provided with the kits or online, very well done and helpful.

Success

As the summer class continued, Dr. Ragain noticed that her remote students tended to have more successful labs than did previous students in hybrid classes who came to campus periodically to complete them. She attributes this to the Carolina kits’ easy-to-follow instructions and engaging investigations.

When asked if she would recommend the lab kits to her colleagues, Dr. Ragain responded with a definite “yes.” Her reasons for this included the easy-to-follow instructions, investigations better designed for the college level than those in other kits she had evaluated, and the Carolina kits’ cost effectiveness. She even reported that she will be recommending the kits for some in-person classes.

Curriculum alignment, ease of use, high-quality materials, and effectiveness—what more can you ask for in a chemistry lab kit for college classes?

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