AAS 201st Meeting, January, 2003
Session 88. Undergraduate Astronomy Instruction, Labs and Research
Poster, Wednesday, January 8, 2003, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall AB

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[88.08] Evaluating Astronomy Laboratories

E. L. Zirbel (Boston University)

A set of non-traditional astronomy laboratories for non-science majors will be presented along with evaluations of lab technicians (these labs were originally developed at the College of Staten Island of the City University of New York). The goal of these labs is twofold: (a) to provide the students with hands-on experiences of scientific methodology and (b) to provoke critical thinking. Because non-science majors are often rather resistant to learning the relevant methodology and especially to thinking critically this manual is structured differently. It does not only provide traditional cook-book recipes but also contains several leading questions to make the students realize why they are doing what. The students are encouraged to write full sentences and explain how they reach which conclusions. This poster summarizes the experiences of the laboratory assistants that worked with the instructor and presents how they judge the effectiveness of the laboratories.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34, #4
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.