Sarat Chandra Babu N
Articles written in Resonance – Journal of Science Education
Volume 27 Issue 8 August 2022 pp 1371-1385 General Article
Virtual Chemistry Lab to Virtual Reality Chemistry Lab
N S Sreekanth Nobby Varghese Sarat Chandra Babu N
The recent Covid-19 pandemic has brought about drastic changes in the teaching-learning process. We witnessed a paradigm shift from conventional classrooms to virtual online learning. Although online learning is not a new concept, the covid-19 pandemic situation came with subsequent restrictions that shook the entire school educational system. Education has become highly uncertain for the time being, especially in India. This has been more evident in rural and village areas where the teaching-learning process does not include technology-enabled methods. Over one year, we have observed that conducting theory classes through online conferencing and virtual classroom software systems has become very common, and students are coping with it. However, in an online environment, students miss out on the practical aspects, i.e., laboratory experiments which are an essential part of science and engineering education. Software-based virtual labs are available, but they lack the real feel of performing an experiment, especially getting familiar with the laboratory apparatus. In this context, the present article proposes an innovative teaching-learning system that helps conduct chemistry volumetric experiments through a hardwareenabled platform named avatar-shell. The proposed system helps students develop titration skills using the actual apparatus. However, while performing experiments with the $avatar-shell$, we don't need to use real chemicals; instead, we use ordinary water. The proposed virtual reality chemistry laboratory system comprises two units-the administrator module for teachers to configure the experiment with appropriate molarity associated with a solution and the simulator module for students to perform the volumetric analysis. The simulator module $avatar-shell$ comprises a high sensitive weight sensor, which communicates with the administrator module and verifies the correctness during every instance of titration. $avatar-shell$ can connect to the administrator module via the internet, and teachers can monitor the experiment through a mobile-based application.
Volume 28 | Issue 5