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Vernier Enhances Science Education by Developing Innovative Sensors and Software for LabQuest

Vernier Software & Technology demonstrated its latest update on the LabQuest 1.4 software with new features during the National Science Teachers Association in Philadelphia.

The LabQuest 1.4 from Vernier

During the presentation, teachers were also provided a glimpse of  technology under development for the forthcoming school year.

The LabQuest 1.4 is currently available and has two important features, namely, periodic table graphing and wireless printing. With the Vernier Wi-Fi adapter, students and teachers will be able to wirelessly print to almost all of the printers in which Wi-Fi is enabled, as well as those printers that create ad hoc networks of their own. Students will be able to use the periodic table graphing function to make periodic table plots like atomic radius against atomic weight, and present them in graphical format to analyze trends. Currently, such graphs are made by hand by students to introduce periodic trends. Chemistry students can utilize the LabQuest and view the periodic table to observe elements with identical properties that recur at regular time intervals.

The LabQuest is a powerful, handheld interface that can be used for data collection. It has six sensor ports. It features a periodic table, a stopwatch, a scientific calculator, and an on-screen keyboard. It is splash proof, can tolerate temperatures in the range of 0¡V70„aC, has rubber molding, which helps in shock absorption, rendering it usable in the classroom and in field studies as well. With this device students can gather scientific data from over 65 sensors and see the information as a data table, meter, or graph on the graphic display.

Vernier¡¦s LabQuest has been honored by several educational awards including the AEP Distinguished Achievement Award and the Teacher's Choice Award.

LabQuest will be further enhanced so that it will play a complete screen video by the next school year. This capability will help educators in downloading short instruction videos. These videos will provide information on how to create experiments or devise questions for student evaluation.  These students will also able to transfer data wirelessly to a remote PC from the LabQuest.

According to David Vernier, an ex-physics teacher and co-founder of Vernier, science teachers worldwide are providing revolutionary ideas to Vernier to enhance classroom-based data collection technology. Vernier revealed that Vernier aims to develop new software features for LabQuest and develop new sensors for the improvement of science education. Vernier has explained that new features of LabQuest that were demonstrated at NSTA will enable science educators to teach advanced as well as simple concepts using the latest technology.

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