Enhancing pre-service science teachers’ inquiry skills in hands-on and virtual laboratory environments

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Kapıcı H. Ö., Akçay H.

Τhemes in e-Learning , vol.13, pp.21-32, 2020 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 13
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Journal Name: Τhemes in e-Learning
  • Journal Indexes: ERIC (Education Resources Information Center)
  • Page Numbers: pp.21-32
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Rapid developments in educational technology show its impacts on classes. One of the recent trends in science education is virtual laboratory environments. The goal of this study is to reveal the effects of inquiry-based hands-on and virtual laboratory environments on pre-service science teachers' inquiry skills. A quasi-experimental research design was used in the current study. There were a total of 42 pre-service science teachers as participants. Whereas 21 of them were taught in the hands-on laboratory environment, the other 21 pre-service science teachers were instructed in the virtual laboratory environment. The guided inquiry-based approach was used. The experiments were from physics and chemistry domains. Due to the limited number of participants in each condition, the nonparametric versions of the parametric tests were used in this study. The findings showed that the inquiry skills of pre-service science teachers in the two conditions enhanced significantly. There was no significant difference between the conditions. This result shows that hands-on laboratories can be replaced by virtual laboratories to enhance pre-service science teachers' inquiry skills.