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ERIC Number: EJ1040077
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Sep
Pages: 5
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
A General Chemistry Laboratory Course Designed for Student Discussion
Obenland, Carrie A.; Kincaid, Kristi; Hutchinson, John S.
Journal of Chemical Education, v91 n9 p1446-1450 Sep 2014
We report a study of the general chemistry laboratory course at one university over four years. We found that when taught as a traditional laboratory course, lab experiences do not encourage students to deepen their understanding of chemical concepts. Although the lab instructor emphasized that the lab experiences were designed to enhance understanding of chemistry, both survey and interview data show that students instead feel that the lab is primarily useful in learning laboratory procedures. As a result of these studies, the laboratory course was reconfigured to include weekly, separately scheduled times for teaching assistant-moderated student discussion of concepts, analysis of data, and reflection on the laboratory. With the inclusion of required discussion, students did report that the lab was a place for learning chemistry and visualizing the chemical phenomena discussed in class.
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: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A