As Close as It Might Get to the Real Lab Experience -- Live-Streamed Laboratory Activities


To reduce the spread of COVID-19, most universities and colleges have moved all instruction temporarily online, including the instruction of chemistry laboratory courses. Teaching laboratory courses online while keeping students engaged is challenging and often leads to presenting prerecorded lab demonstrations, lab animations, or virtual laboratories. To provide the best possible laboratory experience for students who cannot physically be present in the lab, we decided to offer synchronous-online, live-streamed, real-Time demonstrations of the scheduled laboratory experiments. A laboratory instruction team of course instructor, teaching assistant, and cameraperson was utilized to create a most realistic and engaging laboratory experience. During the live-streaming of the laboratory experimentation, students were repeatedly sent to electronic breakout sessions to engage in small-group discussions and resolve tasks such as predicting the outcomes of experiments or calculate numerical data such as molar masses and concentrations for the chemicals used. Examples are presented how live-streaming of laboratory activities can be accomplished, and best-practice guidelines are discussed for the implementation of successful synchronous-online lab instruction.



Keywords and Phrases

Applications of Chemistry; Computer-Based Learning; Demonstrations; First-Year Undergraduate/General; Inquiry-Based/Discovery Learning; Laboratory Instruction; Nonmajor Courses

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

0021-9584; 1938-1328

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





© 2020 American Chemical Society (ACS), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

08 Sep 2020