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Rittenhouse, Robert C. – Journal of Chemical Education, 2015

The "atoms first" philosophy, adopted by a growing number of General Chemistry textbook authors, places greater emphasis on atomic structure as a key to a deeper understanding of the field of chemistry. A pivotal concept needed to understand the behavior of atoms is the restriction of an atom's energy to specific allowed values. However,…

Descriptors: Science Instruction, Chemistry, Undergraduate Study, College Science

Lira, J. A. – Physics Education, 2018

From the time of Pythagoras of Samos (sixth century BC), the Greek philosopher-scientists taught that the Earth was a sphere and the harmonies of the universe were governed by mathematical relations. With the fall of the Roman Empire in the fifth century, cultural darkness descended on Europe and all intellectual pursuits languished under the rule…

Descriptors: Physics, Scientific Principles, Geography, Earth Science

Contreras-Ortega, C.; Bustamante, N.; Guevara, J. L.; Portillo, C.; Kesternich, V. – Journal of Chemical Education, 2007

A general mathematical treatment for chemical systems is described that might help students to better understand the real scope of the mathematical equations. The extent to which an equation acceptably describes a chemical system is determined from the limiting values of practical chemical variables and the concordance value defined by given…

Descriptors: Equations (Mathematics), Chemistry, Science Instruction, College Science

Desjardins, Steven G. – Journal of Chemical Education, 2008

In this paper we describe an interdisciplinary course on dynamics that is appropriate for nonscience majors. This course introduces ideas about mathematical modeling using examples based on pendulums, chemical kinetics, and population dynamics. The unique emphasis for a nonmajors course is on chemical reactions as dynamical systems that do more…

Descriptors: Majors (Students), Kinetics, Chemistry, Spreadsheets

Robic, Srebrenka – CBE - Life Sciences Education, 2010

To fully understand the roles proteins play in cellular processes, students need to grasp complex ideas about protein structure, folding, and stability. Our current understanding of these topics is based on mathematical models and experimental data. However, protein structure, folding, and stability are often introduced as descriptive, qualitative…

Descriptors: Mathematical Models, Thermodynamics, Misconceptions, Teaching Methods

DePierro, Ed; Garafalo, Fred; Toomey, Rick – Journal of Chemical Education, 2008

This paper summarizes difficulties that chemistry students at all levels commonly exhibit when translating, manipulating, and interpreting mathematical expressions that contain logarithms, and offers approaches that the authors have found useful to help students overcome such difficulties. The online supplement provides problem sets created by the…

Descriptors: Advanced Students, Problem Sets, Chemistry, Equations (Mathematics)

Blanco, Francesco; La Rocca, Paola; Petta, Catia; Riggi, Francesco – European Journal of Physics, 2009

An educational model simulation of the sound produced by lightning in the sky has been employed to demonstrate realistic signatures of thunder and its connection to the particular structure of the lightning channel. Algorithms used in the past have been revisited and implemented, making use of current computer techniques. The basic properties of…

Descriptors: Computer Uses in Education, Simulation, Science Instruction, Introductory Courses

Mitchell, Joseph D.; Petrov, Nikola P. – European Journal of Physics, 2009

We apply several physical ideas to determine the steady temperature distribution in a medium moving with uniform velocity between two infinite parallel plates. We compute it in the coordinate frame moving with the medium by integration over the "past" to account for the influence of an infinite set of instantaneous point sources of heat in past…

Descriptors: Physics, Climate, Motion, Science Instruction

Eberhart, James G. – Journal of Chemical Education, 2010

Most thermodynamic properties are either extensive (e.g., volume, energy, entropy, amount, etc.) or intensive (e.g., temperature, pressure, chemical potential, mole fraction, etc.). By the same token most of the mathematical relationships in thermodynamics can be written in extensive or intensive form. The basic laws of thermodynamics are usually…

Descriptors: Thermodynamics, Chemistry, Scientific Concepts, Equations (Mathematics)

Capizzo, M. C.; Sperandeo-Mineo, R. M.; Zarcone, M. – European Journal of Physics, 2008

We present a pedagogic approach aimed at modelling electric conduction in semiconductors in order to describe and explain some macroscopic properties, such as the characteristic behaviour of resistance as a function of temperature. A simple model of the band structure is adopted for the generation of electron-hole pairs as well as for the carrier…

Descriptors: Teaching Methods, Science Instruction, Laboratory Equipment, Science Experiments

Santillan, M.; Zeron, E. S.; Del Rio-Correa, J. L. – European Journal of Physics, 2008

In the traditional statistical mechanics textbooks, the entropy concept is first introduced for the microcanonical ensemble and then extended to the canonical and grand-canonical cases. However, in the authors' experience, this procedure makes it difficult for the student to see the bigger picture and, although quite ingenuous, the subtleness of…

Descriptors: Textbooks, Thermodynamics, Mechanics (Physics), Scientific Concepts

Peer reviewed

Glick, David – Physics Teacher, 1995

Presents a technique that helps students concentrate more on the science and less on the mechanics of algebra while dealing with introductory physics formulas. Allows the teacher to do complex problems at a lower level and not be too concerned about the mathematical abilities of the students. (JRH)

Descriptors: Algebra, Chemistry, Equations (Mathematics), Mathematics

Dobrogowski, W.; Maziewski, A.; Zablotskii, V. – European Journal of Physics, 2007

We describe our experience in building a remote laboratory for teaching magnetic domains. Fulfilling the proposed on-line experiments, students can observe and study magnetization processes that are often difficult to explain with written material. It is proposed that networks of remotely accessible laboratories could be integrated in the Global…

Descriptors: Science Laboratories, Magnets, Scientific Concepts, Science Experiments

Meek, Simon J.; Pitman, Catherine L.; Miller, Alexander J. M. – Journal of Chemical Education, 2016

An introductory guide to deducing the mechanism of chemical reactions is presented. Following a typical workflow for probing reaction mechanism, the guide introduces a wide range of kinetic and mechanistic tools. In addition to serving as a broad introduction to mechanistic analysis for students and researchers, the guide has also been used by…

Descriptors: Science Instruction, College Science, Chemistry, Scientific Concepts

Ryan, Sheila; Herrington, Deborah G. – Journal of Chemical Education, 2014

Understanding what happens at the particulate level when ionic compounds dissolve in water is difficult for many students, yet this understanding is critical in explaining many macroscopic observations. This article describes a student-centered activity designed to help strengthen students' conceptual understanding of this process at the…

Descriptors: Chemistry, Science Activities, Science Instruction, Magnets

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