The Efficacy of Online MBL Activities
The focus of this study was twofold: one, to determine if students could increase their physics content knowledge through the completion of an online hands-on Microcomputer-Based Laboratory (MBL) unit on motion; and two to determine if the demonstrated learning gains were equivalent to those of students who completed the same MBL activities in a more traditional classroom setting with their teacher. One hundred and fifty high school physics students from five diverse high schools participated in the study. Ninety-five were in the classroom group and 55 were in the online group. The online group showed significant comprehension gains from pre-test to post-test. When compared to the classroom group, there was not a significant difference in the gain scores between the two groups. This suggests that further study could lead to the development of online, hands-on physics classes that could be offered to students whose schools do not offer physics due to the lack of resources or physics teachers.