NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1096240
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Apr
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1756-1108
Reconsidering Learning Difficulties and Misconceptions in Chemistry: Emergence in Chemistry and Its Implications for Chemical Education
Tümay, Halil
Chemistry Education Research and Practice, v17 n2 p229-245 Apr 2016
Identifying students' misconceptions and learning difficulties and finding effective ways of addressing them has been one of the major concerns in chemistry education. However, the chemistry education community has paid little attention to determining discipline-specific aspects of chemistry that can lead to learning difficulties and misconceptions. In this article, it is argued that emergence plays a critical role in the epistemology and the ontology of chemistry and hence it should be taken into account for understanding learning difficulties and finding ways of addressing them in chemistry. It is particularly argued that one of the fundamental sources of learning difficulties and chemical misconceptions is learners' failure to understand the emergent nature of chemical entities, their properties, and interactions. In this article, an interpretive analysis framework is suggested for identifying specific learning demands and the sources of learners' misconceptions about the emergent chemical properties and phenomena. Findings from previous research on learners' misconceptions regarding emergent chemical properties are reanalyzed and interpreted through this framework. Inadequacies of typical teaching practices and their consequences are discussed from an emergentist perspective. Finally, implications of the emergentist perspective for more meaningful chemical education are discussed.
Royal Society of Chemistry. Thomas Graham House, Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0WF, UK. Tel: +44-1223 420066; Fax: +44-1223 423623; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Secondary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A