Chemistry education
Chemistry education

Here's What Chemistry Educators Are Saying About ACS Digital Learning Solutions on Lab Safety

Chi Wang
  • 4 min read

Explore ACS Publications' innovative digital courses on lab safety, designed to integrate seamlessly into your chemistry curriculum and inspire both educators and students alike to elevate safety standards in their laboratories and classrooms.

A laptop is sitting on a table next to a potted plant.

Safety is one of the core values of the American Chemical Society. To reinforce the importance of maintaining a safe laboratory environment, ACS Publications offers a suite of interactive, learning management system (LMS)-based digital solutions, designed to provide essential chemical safety concepts to students at various levels throughout their chemistry education.

The ACS Digital Learning Solutions on Lab Safety present an extensive selection of safety topics curated and reviewed by trusted thought leaders, leveraging the RAMP framework and some of the best works presented by ACS Committee of Chemical Safety and the Division of Chemical Health and Safety.

“The course covers so many details of safety from what to wear in the lab to cleaning up after experiments,” said Dr. Elizabeth Arendt, Chemistry Department Chair and an early adopter of the ACS Essentials of Lab Safety for General Chemistry course at the Community College of Rhode Island.

Read on to learn more about how these courses are helping educators worldwide to establish and promote a robust chemical lab safety culture in their labs and institutions.

Fostering a Positive Safety Culture

Ensuring chemical safety is a crucial duty for those in the field of chemistry, both from a moral and legal standpoint. This responsibility is vital not only for the safety of the scientists conducting the research but also for the welfare of the entire scientific community.

Since their launch in early 2022, the ACS lab safety digital courses have been adopted by dozens of academic institutions in the U.S. and around the world to help prioritize a positive safety culture in their chemistry program.

The way that students are encouraged to think about safety before they leave their room for campus is a great way to develop a more rigorous culture of safety…!”
Dr. Caleb Tatebe, Assistant Professor, Presbyterian College

Interactive Learning Experience

With the use of multimedia and modern learning platform, the ACS Online Learning and Training team turned lab safety—a topic often deemed as boring and stagnant among students—into an unprecedented interactive learning experience, establishing a positive lab safety culture even before the lab course begins.

“The digital courses allow us [to] better illustrate proper dress code, important MSDS information…and show the different safety scenarios that students may encounter in the lab…," says Sarah Oerther, M.S. Senior Lecturer at The University of Texas at San Antonio, "The ACS lab safety modules are bright and visual, presenting information with a voiceover, testimonials, and interactive segments where the students can make their own choices based on the information presented.”

The ACS lab safety modules are bright and visual, presenting information with a voiceover, testimonials, and interactive segments where the students can make their own choices based on the information presented.”  --Sarah Oerther, M.S. Senior Lecturer, The University of Texas at San Antonio

Turn-Key Solutions Streamlining Every Task

In addition to the interactive component, this suite of turn-key courses is also designed to alleviate teaching faculty’s burden so that they can focus on other important tasks and academic topics without sacrificing safety education.

All ACS digital learning solutions can be seamlessly integrated into most common learning management systems (LMS), making it a breeze to assign homework, monitor student progress, assess comprehension, and even facilitate remediation.

Dr. Lynne O’Connell, Director of Undergraduate Labs at Boston College, was pleased to gain “precious time in the laboratory for experimental work” since they “no longer have to show a safety video and administer an in-class safety test.”

I no longer have to show a safety video and administer an in-class safety test. Dr. O’Connell, Director of Undergraduate Labs at Boston College

Standardizing Safety Education Across the Department

In institutions where safety is instructed by faculty members at various levels throughout the chemistry program, both faculty and students frequently encounter disparate materials. This not only leads to inconsistent learning outcomes but also contributes to varying perceptions of the importance of safety among students.

Patricia Hartman, Chemistry Laboratory Manager at DeSales University, found the solution. "The ACS safety courses…have allowed us to standardize our safety training for all our 100 and 200 level chemistry courses," she says. "Whether a lab is being taught by a full-time faculty member or by an adjunct who is only on campus once a week, we know that all students are receiving the same training.”

“The ACS safety courses… have allowed us to standardize our safety training for all our 100 and 200 level chemistry courses. Patricia Hartman, Chemistry Laboratory Manager at DeSales University

Make Safety a Priority at Your Institution

Visit the links below to explore the ACS Digital Learning Solutions on Lab Safety, watch a free webinar demonstration of the courses, and request evaluator access for your laboratory or classroom.

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