Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Vernier LabQuest Emulator

Over the year's I have written about the importance of giving students hands-on experience when doing science and what better way to do it than with probeware. Vernier, one of the leaders in this area has developed the LabQuest an easy to use handheld device that can be used in the classroom or in the field to collect data using an array of different probes and sensors. Using the LabQuest students can collect and analyze their data in ways that were once too time consuming to actually do in the classroom. Using the LabQuest students can collect the data in real time and spend the rest of the time analyzing and making sense of the data that was collected. The LabQuest does all of the heavy lifting and allows the students to better visualize the meaning of the data.

I recently had the opportunity to test out the LabQuest Emulator which currently works on the Windows platform and allows teachers to display a working LabQuest on their computer which is ideal for demonstrations and for teaching. You can download a free copy of the LabQuest Emulator from the Vernier website. Once you have downloaded the LabQuest Emulator you will need to have your LabQuest connected to your computer via the USB port and your probe connected to the LabQuest. Within a minute or so you will see your LabQuest on your computer screen with a live digital read out. In my case, I plugged a temperature probe into my LabQuest and was able to see the temperature read out on my computer screen. The LabQuest Emulator software is an ideal way for teachers to demonstrate how to use the LabQuest and is a great tool that can be used with an interactive whiteboards. I have created a short screencast showing you the LabQuest Emulator in action. I hope you enjoy it. You can also download a free copy of Inclusion Times which talks about the importance of using tools like the LabQuest with students to help them analyze and visualize data more effectively.

 
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