P516: Implementing guided-inquiry learning and technology into organic chemistry

Author: Brian Cavitt, Abilene Christian University, USA

Co-Author:

Date: 8/5/14

Time: 4:00 PM4:20 PM

Room: MAN 102

Related Symposium: S2

Implementation of guided-inquiry (GI) learning into the organic chemistry lab like the use of technology in the classroom have both become more ubiquitous in recent years. However, until attending two cCWCS workshops (Teaching Guided-Inquiry Organic Chemistry Labs in 2011 and Implementing iPads in the Chemistry Curriculum in 2013), both GI learning and technology were personally dismissed. The use of GI learning in organic chemistry labs and also the corresponding lecture courses has revolutionized and empowered my teaching philosophy, classroom/laboratory, and view of students’ learning potential. Likewise, the use of technology became a learning tool and not the dreaded distraction. Since attending the workshops, GI learning has become the predominate teaching/learning methodology employed in my organic chemistry labs and lecture. Traditional laboratory exams were replaced with practicae. Pre-lab quizzes were replaced with GI activities. Laboratory worksheets were discarded for formalized laboratory reports, often written in lab with word processing apps, detailing the students’ laboratory “discoveries” and not predetermined results. In lecture, learning became self-paced with the use of GI activities instead of lectures where information was disseminated to students. Reading quizzes were implemented to determine student interest and confusion before the addressing content. During lecture, students introduced and explained reactions and mechanisms. Subsequent class discussion critiqued and often affirmed student understanding of organic chemistry, providing real-time feedback via several iPad apps. Examples from the summer 2013 organic chemistry lecture and labs will be provided.