How Can I Teach Biology Online Using Lab Kits?

Participants will have the opportunity to hear from 3 subject matter experts with over 30 years of combined experience teaching biology lab courses online. Each of the panelists has experience designing biology kits for their students to use at home with safe, rigorous experiments mirroring those done in the traditional lab setting. Some of the topics the panelists will be focusing on include: 

  • As an instructor who is new to teaching biology online, I am uncomfortable with the idea of students doing labs in their homes without my supervision. I am worried about safety and academic integrity. Can you tell us how you address these?
  • I’ve been a biology professor for 20 years. I do not believe you can teach a course with an “at-home” lab that is equivalent to the lab I teach face to face. I am present in my lab to answer questions as they come up and guide students through proper techniques. How can this be done when students are at a distance?
  • How do I know that my students will get the kits before the class ends? 
  • Can I control what labs my students will do?
  • What if the student gets the wrong stuff or runs out of one of their supplies?
  • I don’t even know where to begin. What do you recommend?

Intended Audience:
Deans, Department Chairs, Instructors, Instructional Designers, Online Learning Directors interested in putting their Biology Lab courses online without losing important hands-on lab component.

Sponsored by:

Carolina Distance Learning Logo

Speaker Bio


Jessica Brown, MS and MSP
Professor at Central Carolina Community College
Jessica is a biology instructor at Central Carolina Community College where she primarily teaches Anatomy and Physiology to nursing students via hybrid or fully online classes. She has developed a two semester, fully online, A&P sequence and an introductory online biology class for non science majors. Jessica has been teaching online for 12+ years and is a very strong advocate of hands on distance learning, especially in the science classes. Her classes are often used as models for developing and training online instructors at CCCC.Jessica obtained a MS from Clemson University in Animal Physiology and a MSP from the University of Florida, where she was a part time distance education student. Jessica was awarded the NCCCS Excellence in Teaching Award in recognition of her seated and online instruction.
Kelly Thrippleton-Hunter, M.A.T., Ph.D.
Professor at Southern New Hampshire University
Kelly is a Technical Program Facilitator and Faculty member at Southern New Hampshire University who works with students, faculty, academic administrators, instructional designers, and other stakeholders to support and promote continued improvement of the overall online student experience, as well as online course and program quality. She has also worked with vendors and subject matter experts in the development and updating of online science labs. Kelly has worked as an online instructor and in a faculty role supporting, mentoring, and teaching online students in the natural sciences, including the biological sciences, for the last 9+ years. Kelly holds a B.S. in Environmental Biology and Ecology and a B.S. in Zoology from California State University, Long Beach, an M.A.T. in Science (7-12) from Western Governors University, and a Ph.D. in Environmental Toxicology from the University of California, Riverside.

John VandenBrooks, Ph.D.
Professor at Arizona State University

Bio coming soon