Pre-Lab and Post Lab questions prepare students for better lab sessions!

Published January 17, 2018

By Cyndy Prentice-Craver, Chemeketa Community College

To foster investment, preparedness, and motivation in learning Human Anatomy and Physiology, the Martin 4e laboratory manual contains both pre-lab and post-lab questions for instructors to utilize in their teaching strategies.

Instructors may require students to complete pre-lab questions prior to a corresponding laboratory class. These pre-lab questions reflect a general understanding of the laboratory introduction and procedure(s); thus, the desired outcome is to encourage students to be prepared and to come to laboratory class with the intent to participate and to learn. An instructor may incorporate small group discussion for review and/or application to the laboratory that will be conducted. A short quiz, related story or case study, or simple questions and answers may be presented to students at the beginning of the laboratory session to spark their memory and to ignite excitement and motivation for the laboratory exercise(s) ahead.

The Martin 4e laboratory manual contains post-lab questions in the Assessments located at the end of each laboratory exercise. These questions come in many formats, including matching, labeling, and short answer, with the purpose of reinforcing the laboratory content. Critical thinking questions challenge students to synthesize, analyze, and/or apply concepts. An instructor may encourage collaboration amongst students by actively engaging them in peer to peer or small group discussion as they work on these post-lab questions. Alternatively, these post-lab questions may be assigned as homework after the laboratory session.

Both the pre-lab and post-lab questions are available digitally in McGraw-Hill Connect, providing a rich and flexible resource for instructors to utilize for improving the student learning experience. These and other digital questions within the Martin 4e Connect may be assigned for students to complete for credit or noncredit. Regardless of whether these questions are required of students in the Martin 4e hard copy lab manual or digitally through Connect, they are intended to get the student involved, enthusiastic, and invested in their learning. I know that my students have found these to be useful in improving their understanding and learning outcomes.