Northern Kentucky University

Poster Title

Student Learning in Chemistry: Cognitive Skills and Conceptual Models: Study 1 (Daugherty): Student Misconceptions of the Properties of Gases

Institution

Northern Kentucky University

Abstract

Misconceptions pose significant barriers to learning and lead to shallow understanding for students. A literature review of gas law misconceptions was conducted in order to identify common misconceptions held by students on the properties of gases. A set of 80 misconceptions identified from the literature was classified into 16 different categories which included assimilation, understanding formulas, and the particulate nature of gas. Gas questions were served on tests and quizzes administered to students enrolled in general chemistry classes at Northern Kentucky University and California State University, Fullerton. These gas questions were then analyzed to identify target misconceptions. Finally, student responses to the variety of gas questions were analyzed according to a coding scheme in order to identify patterns and determine the misconceptions that were present. It was determined that the majority of students hold at least one misconception, with the most common misconception from the variables category. The most prevalent misconception from the variables category was found to be assigning absolute relationships among variables. This research is a part of a funded grand by NSF in which general chemistry lab activities will be developed to target inquiry skill development and representational competence. These materials will begin to address the misconception problem and help students develop appropriate models of science concepts.

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Student Learning in Chemistry: Cognitive Skills and Conceptual Models: Study 1 (Daugherty): Student Misconceptions of the Properties of Gases

Misconceptions pose significant barriers to learning and lead to shallow understanding for students. A literature review of gas law misconceptions was conducted in order to identify common misconceptions held by students on the properties of gases. A set of 80 misconceptions identified from the literature was classified into 16 different categories which included assimilation, understanding formulas, and the particulate nature of gas. Gas questions were served on tests and quizzes administered to students enrolled in general chemistry classes at Northern Kentucky University and California State University, Fullerton. These gas questions were then analyzed to identify target misconceptions. Finally, student responses to the variety of gas questions were analyzed according to a coding scheme in order to identify patterns and determine the misconceptions that were present. It was determined that the majority of students hold at least one misconception, with the most common misconception from the variables category. The most prevalent misconception from the variables category was found to be assigning absolute relationships among variables. This research is a part of a funded grand by NSF in which general chemistry lab activities will be developed to target inquiry skill development and representational competence. These materials will begin to address the misconception problem and help students develop appropriate models of science concepts.