Integration of open educational resources in undergraduate chemistry teaching – a mapping tool and lecturers' considerations
This study examines chemistry lecturers' considerations for using open educational resources (OER) in their teaching. Recent technological developments provide innovative approaches for teaching chemistry and visualizing chemical phenomena. End users' improved ability to upload information online enables integration of various pedagogical models and learning theories. These improvements strengthen the need for up-to-date evaluation tools for educational websites. Building on existing taxonomies, a set of new criteria for the evaluation of online learning materials was developed and used to analyze 100 websites directed towards teaching chemistry. In addition, a questionnaire was circulated among 100 chemistry lecturers from various higher education institutions in Israel, 66 of whom responded. Subsequently, interviews were conducted with 17 of the questionnaire respondents. Our findings demonstrate that most of the chemistry lecturers who were interviewed integrate innovative learning materials such as simulations, videos and exercises found online in their teaching, but do not use web 2.0 that enables content sharing and collaborative learning. With respect to the selection of web-based learning materials, we found that the lecturers interviewed tended to select OER intuitively, mainly considering the reliability of information, pedagogical issues and the visual contribution, while paying less attention to collaborative learning and content sharing.