Answering your popular school science lab questions

School science labs are a crucial learning space for students to gain and develop relevant skills and experience. Providing such learning environments helps improve learning success and student attainment. But there are many elements to consider with school science labs.

We’ve got all the answers to your popular science lab questions to help your school provide a learning environment that benefits science learning.

Discover how to design a successful learning space for STEM

Do all schools have science labs?

Most schools will have science labs for teaching science. Access to school science labs allows students to participate in practical exercises and experiments to support their learning. In the UK, it is estimated each secondary will have an average of six science labs.

Why do we need a biology laboratory in school?

Biology laboratories in schools are essential for allowing students to learn through experimentation and practical exercises. A biology lab provides the opportunity for experiments such as dissections, microscopic observations, and photosynthesis/plant growth observations.

What are the steps to build a biology lab?

Some of the steps involved in building a biology lab include:

  • Set a purpose/goal for the lab.
  • Decide on the location, layout, and arrangement.
  • Assign a budget for the build.
  • Acquisition and installation of FF&E.
  • Installation of safety features and tests.

Why do science labs have modern equipment?

Like advances in technology, science equipment also improves and advances. Sticking with old, outdated, or existing equipment can become less efficient and reliable over time. Science labs upgrade to modern equipment for greater reliability, accuracy, and safety.

What are the components of a school laboratory?

There are many components and elements of a school lab design. Some of the essential components of a school science lab includes:

  • Flexible learning spaces, for both theoretical and practical learning, can adjust to fit the needs of a given lesson.
  • Environment, such as natural light, temperature, and air quality, can all impact student learning.
  • Arrangement and layout of the furniture and tables so students can always hear and see the teacher.
  • Space utilisation and limiting the number of hazards/safety risks, such ease of moving items to and from science technician rooms.

What is needed for practical science in the classroom?

Practical science in the classroom requires a range of equipment and resources, including safety equipment, science supplies and tools, access to technology, curriculum materials, collaboration tools, time and room set-up, and professional development.

What can a learner experience in a science classroom?

By providing science classrooms for students, learners can have hands-on practical experiences that allow them to develop skills and expertise in scientific concepts and principles. It also allows students to work together and collaborate.

What are some good objectives for science labs?

The first stage of designing science labs for schools is to set a clear goal or objective for what you want the learning space to achieve. Some examples of objectives for school science lab design include skill development, investigation and discovery, and developing scientific reasoning.

Why should schools have science laboratory equipment?

Washing facilities inside a lab

Science laboratory equipment is a crucial element of a successful school science lab. By providing science laboratory equipment, you allow students to perform experiments. Partaking in practical experiments improves understanding and knowledge of scientific concepts.

How do you maintain school science labs?

Maintaining a science lab helps keep all equipment, furniture, and fixtures in great shape. To maintain a science lab, cleaning all exterior surfaces daily, doing a weekly deep cleaning of all equipment, and regularly cleaning microscopes are recommended. Regular testing is also recommended to ensure safety.

What are some safety rules in a science lab?

Ensuring safety in a school science lab is a top priority. Safety rules that every school should follow include:

  • No eating or drinking
  • Wearing PPE
  • Tucking in loose clothing
  • Good hygiene practice
  • Keeping focused
  • Using suitable storage containers

What are the functions of a fume cupboard in the laboratory?

A fume cupboard inside a school science lab

A fume cupboard is an essential piece of equipment for chemistry science labs. A fume cupboard is used for science experiments that produce dangerous air-borne substances, such as gas, smoke, or vapours.

Why are students taught science through experiments?

Practical experiments should be within every school’s science curriculum as they allow students to develop skills, experience, and understanding. Practical exercises provide a chance for students to apply and enhance theoretical knowledge.

What are some tips for buying lab furniture?

Two of the biggest tips for buying lab furniture are quality and the needs/aims of the learning space. Other factors or tips to consider when purchasing lab furniture include budget, ergonomics, comfort, practicality, flexibility, and maintenance.

What are the most important design elements for school science labs?

A modern school science lab

There are many design elements for a school science lab. However, some of these elements are more important than others and will require extra consideration. Design elements, such as safety, efficiency, flexibility, comfort, and aesthetics, are the most important.

How does safety matter in terms of lab design?

During practical exercises, there are many potential safety risks and hazards. Fall hazards, chemicals, burns, and air pollution are all potential safety hazards. Safety should be at the forefront of a lab design, such as the lab layout, to minimise the risk of accidents or injury.

How important is the interior design in school science labs?

The interior design of a school science lab is crucial to improving student’s learning. An effective lab interior design will consider functionality, safety, compliance, and maintenance to ensure the safest and best possible learning environment.

What kind of science tools might you use in a laboratory?

Some of the standard and popular tools in science you might use in a laboratory include:

  • Funnels and bottles
  • Test tubes
  • Bunsen burners
  • Beakers
  • Microscopes
  • Burettes and pipes
  • Clamps and stands

What are the components of school science labs?

A school science laboratory may have three components to support learning and practical experiments. These are research or theoretical learning areas, storage for frequently used equipment, and lab benches to conduct experiments.

What happens in a physics lab?

A physics science lab is designed specifically for the physics science discipline to provide students with hands-on experiences. A physics lab may include additional scientific equipment not found in other labs, such as lasers, oscilloscopes, and circuit boards.

What are the features of a chemistry laboratory?

A school chemistry lab

A chemistry lab will have several features specific to teaching this science discipline. Some elements include fume cupboards, fire extinguishers, an eye washing station, gas valves for Bunsen burners, and chemical glassware.

Did we answer all your questions on school science labs? Whether you have an existing lab that needs upgrading/maintenance or are in the process of designing new science labs, there are bound to be questions that will arise. The answers above will help your school provide the best possible modern learning environment for science subjects.

Discover the importance of technology in STEM learning spaces

Discover the importance of technology in STEM learning spaces