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ERIC Number: EJ1014550
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-May
Pages: 7
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Assessing the Development of Chemistry Students' Conceptual and Visual Understanding of Dimensional Analysis via Supplemental Use of Web-Based Software
Ellis, Jennifer T.
Journal of Chemical Education, v90 n5 p554-560 May 2013
This study was designed to evaluate the effects of a proprietary software program on students' conceptual and visual understanding of dimensional analysis. The participants in the study were high school general chemistry students enrolled in two public schools with different demographics (School A and School B) in the Chattanooga, Tennessee, metropolitan area. Using a "treatment group" and a "control group" (no treatment), a mixed-methods design was used in the data collection and analysis to provide a holistic view of the impact of the software on student learning. The resulting qualitative and quantitative data confirmed that the software enhanced the treatment groups' conceptual and visual understanding of dimensional analysis. In fact, when all of the quantitative and qualitative data were viewed as a whole, the advantages of integrating use of the software into the general chemistry classroom proved to have significant impact on student conceptual and visual understanding of dimensional analysis. The enhanced conceptual understanding was verified by quantitative data, which indicated a significant difference between the overall pretest and posttest scores of the treatment group ("n" = 14, "t" = -2.896, "p" = 0.008). On the basis of the descriptive statistics, it is evident that all students benefited from using the software. The qualitative data showed that students' visual understanding was enhanced and that they valued their experiences using the software and were able to enhance their knowledge of all aspects of dimensional analysis. The researcher takes the lessons learned from this study and provides practical best practices on effectively integrating elements of the software to enhance conceptual and visual understanding in traditional chemistry classrooms. (Contains 2 tables, 1 box, and 3 figures.)
Division of Chemical Education, Inc and ACS Publications Division of the American Chemical Society. 1155 Sixteenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 800-227-5558; Tel: 202-872-4600; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Tennessee
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A