E. Ramos, C. García-Cantón, A. Romero

Universidad Complutense de Madrid (SPAIN)
To avoid the risks originated by the current outbreak of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), we created a virtual laboratory to improve food science, students, learning experience. The main objective was to develop a fully online practice simulating a toxicology laboratory, based on previous literature and previous experiences with virtual learning [1] [2].

After completing the virtual toxicology laboratory, the experience was reviewed by each student through a survey. Previous experiences with Toxicology students in virtual experiences motivate and increase participation [3]. These surveys were divided into three blocks. The first block included questions about previous knowledge. The second part involved questions about the virtual experience, and in the last block, they write about the advantages and inconveniences of the experience.

The obtained results were quite satisfying, most of the students consider that knowledge improved substantially, while effort was not excessive. In spite, most of them admit that their previous technical skills were not very high. When comparing this remote teaching method to classical lectures in the laboratory, they believe that there are many positive changes in this experience and that it was interesting or very interesting for more than half of the students. Conversely, half of the surveys revealed that approximately half of the students don't consider this method as efficacious as the presential activities in the laboratory.

We conclude that this method can be a useful complementary tool to improve the learning experience, but it stills far from being as efficacious as traditional practices in the laboratory.

[1] B. Dalgarno, A.G. Bishop, W. Adlong, D.R. Bedgood (2009) Effectiveness of a Virtual Laboratory as a preparatory resource for Distance Education chemistry students. Computers & Education, Vol 53 (3) p. 853-865.
[2] J. S. Quiroz (2011). Diseño y moderación de entornos virtuales de aprendizaje (EVA). Editorial UOC.
[3] P. Moyano, J. Del Pino, J.M. Garcia, M.T. Frejo, M. Lobo, J. Garcia, A. Pelayo, M.J. Anadon, E. Sola, F.J. Mourin (2019) Virtual reality learning system increases motivation and improves performance of toxicology students. EDULEARN19 Proceedings, p. 2458.