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Issue 2, 2001
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BUILDING THE STRUCTURAL CONCEPTS OF CHEMISTRY: SOME CONSIDERATIONS FROM EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH

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Abstract

This paper sets out to consider how educational research into the learning of structural aspects of chemistry might inform teaching practice. The paper is based around a review of research findings into learners’ difficulties in developing the scientific models of chemical structures (atoms, molecules, lattices etc.) This forms the second of the four sections into which the paper is organised. The paper begins by considering how ideas about the learning process can inform our understanding of alternative conceptions and frameworks in chemistry, and - therefore - how we should view the research reviewed in the second section. This is a consideration of the findings of studies into difficulties learning about the molecular model; atomic structure; molecular structure; and lattices. This review is followed by a section identifying some key ‘pedagogic impediments’ - alternative aspects of learners’ thinking that seem to derive from the way the subject is taught. In the final section some practical suggestions are made regarding how the teaching of chemistry may be revised to help learners construct the scientific models rather than develop the alternative conceptions. [Chem. Educ. Res. Pract. Eur.: 2001, 2, 123-158]

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Article information


Submitted
04 Feb 2001

Chem. Educ. Res. Pract., 2001,2, 123-158
Article type
Paper

BUILDING THE STRUCTURAL CONCEPTS OF CHEMISTRY: SOME CONSIDERATIONS FROM EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH

K. S. TABER, Chem. Educ. Res. Pract., 2001, 2, 123
DOI: 10.1039/B1RP90014E

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