dr sarah mclusky formerly newcastle college currently royal society of chemistry n.
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Dr Sarah McLusky Formerly Newcastle College Currently Royal Society of Chemistry
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  1. Are practical laboratory skills among first year science undergraduates related to academic achievement or qualification choice?Results of a pilot study at Newcastle College Dr Sarah McLusky Formerly Newcastle College Currently Royal Society of Chemistry

  2. Practical laboratory work Theoretical knowledge SCIENCE

  3. BTEC National/Extended Diploma Applied Science A-level Applied Science A-level Science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics) Access to HE (Science) FdSc Analytical Chemistry FdSc Biotechnology Similar academic achievement Extremely variable practical skills

  4. Core Lab Skills Working safely Accuracy and Skill Diluting a solution Following instructions Weighing out solids Making up a solution Using a pipette

  5. Formative assessment for all new L4 FdSc students in 2012 and 2013 Students opt in or out of research study Opt in  questionnaire on L2 and L3 qualifications Useable results obtained from 25 students

  6. Weigh out 1.5g copper (II) sulphate Place the powder in a beaker and dissolve in a little water

  7. Put the solution in the volumetric flask and make up to the mark Get assessor to check level

  8. Prepare 5ml of a 1 in 5 dilution of the copper sulphate solution

  9. Measure the absorbance Fill a cuvette with a sample of your original solution… and another with your diluted solution.

  10. Test Scoring (out of 35) One mark was subtracted each time they asked for help

  11. Scores ranged from 15 to 31 (out of 35) • Most confident (highest scores) • Use of PPE • Weighing out • Least confident (lowest scores) • Preparing a dilution • Using a pipette • Making up solutions

  12. Do these results indicate a wider trend? Do more practical students self-select? BTEC grades are not always true indicators of academic ability

  13. Is it the curriculum? Some A-level and Access students claim they did no practical at all BTEC requires students to carry out tasks and demonstrate skills

  14. Informed decision making Employers/ recruitment decisions Possible significance Qualification status and equivalence Value of ‘wet’ practicals Advice and Guidance Curriculum design University admissions

  15. With thanks to Julie Hizzett (co-assessor) Newcastle College colleagues Cameron (star of the photos)

  16. Are practical laboratory skills among first year science undergraduates related to academic achievement or qualification choice?Results of a pilot study at Newcastle College Dr Sarah McLusky Formerly Newcastle College Currently Royal Society of Chemistry