Hi, I'm a senior Lab Coordinator for the general chemistry instructional labs program and am looking to network with other lab managers and coordinators at more specifically at the university level (but all in the educational field are welcome to respond). I've been in this field for 7 years, but haven't until recently started reaching out to others who are in similar areas as me. I'm finding that the usual resources and groups for safety, lab prep, organization of materials, delivery of materials to the labs, etc. have not necessarily been focused on what works in instructional labs (ones with a different experiment each week, per each course, facilitated by TAs), and I am looking to bounce ideas off others in my position.
Can anyone point me in the right direction?
The Cottrell Scholars Collaborative has supported a series of GRAD-TA PREP workshops for teams from chemistry and physics. They are listed at http://www.physics.utah.edu/~jgerton/CSC_TA_Workshop/contact-us.html.
As with textbooks, there are many different approaches to laboratory exercises and experiments. Just as a model for "One week, one lab" I can recommend a third-party provider that we use at my institution (Thomas Edison State University) for online courses, where I teach introductory level chemistry courses. As published, they might be a bit too simple for a full in-lab course experiment. However, they do provide good labs with relevant learning experiences related to the textbook materials that can be accomplished in 2-4 hours.
At least they may be a good reference or starting point for developing a lab course or adapting them to your particular course schedule of topics. The company is eScience, and they provide free materials for faculty using the materials in their courses (students purchase an individual lab kit and Manual individually). The webpage is at
Thank you, Steven. I am looking for other undergraduate teaching lab managers and stockroom personnel to network with to discuss how their stockrooms are organized and how they deliver the appropriate materials to the teaching labs.
I'd like to suggest that you join NAOSMM (the National Association of Scientific Materials Managers). We have a listserve where we discuss lab ideas, chemical safety and storage, and other topics related to undergraduate labs. I joined last year for the first time, and it's been immensely helpful for me. Here's the website! NAOSMM
Thank you, Ellen! I looked into NAOSMM a few years back, but I didn't see much for undergraduate labs. I'll check it out again.
The BCCE 2020 is a great place and I see a couple of symposia about what you are looking for. I know a number of lab coordinators are hosting the one "Professional development of lab teaching assistants." Or look me up at Univ. Kentucky!
Unfortunately, I'm not one of those selected from my university to go to BCCE this year, but I'll look you up! Thanks!
You have two years to save up to go to the next BCCE. Even if your institution won't pay, it is worth it! In the meantime, just contact someone at a nearby campus, and ask to spend a half-day just watching their operations. If you find yourself on vacation in Atlanta GA, you are welcome to do this at Emory. Just swing south by after you leave UKy!