Our paper proposes a new pedagogical approach for learning chemistry practical experiments based on three modes of inquiry-based learning namely; structured, guided and open. Online Labs (OLabs) is a web-based learning environment for science practical experiments that include simulations, animations, tutorials and assessments. Inquiry-based learning is a pedagogy that supports student-centered learning and encourages them to think scientifically. It develops evidence based reasoning and creative problem solving skills that result in knowledge creation and higher recall. We discuss the methodology and tools that OLabs provides to enable educators to design three types of inquiry-based learning for Chemistry experiments. The integration of inquiry-based learning into OLabs is aligned with the Indian Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) goal of nurturing higher order inquiry skills for student centered and active learning. Inquiry-based OLabs pedagogy also empowers the teachers to provide differentiated instruction to the students while enhancing student interest and motivation.
Prema Nedungadi, Malini, P., and Raghu Raman, “Inquiry Based Learning Pedagogy for Chemistry Practical Experiments Using OLabs”, in Advances in Intelligent Informatics, Springer, 2015, pp. 633–642.