P794: Graduate TA professional development towards reliable assessment of student lab reports

Author: Mitchell Bruce, University of Maine, USA

Co-Author: Shirly Avargil and Susan Klemmer, University of Maine, USA

Date: 8/6/14

Time: 10:15 AM10:35 AM

Room: HON 148

Related Symposium: S64

In response to moving our laboratory instruction towards more student-centered, inquiry-based approaches, at the University of Maine in 2009, we created a one-credit graduate level course for laboratory instructors, “Chemistry Instructional Laboratory Leadership” (CHY 502). The course exposes lab instructors to inquiry-based curriculum approaches, the discipline-based research literature focusing on conceptual understanding of key chemical concepts, and research-supported instructional strategies. Lab instructors, who are part of the general chemistry lab program, are required to attend the course each fall and take it for credit the first three times they participate. One of the central issues we have faced with professional development of a cohort of lab instructors is how to develop “community standards” for the reliable assessment of student lab work and grading lab reports. We will describe a professional development activity that was designed to identify differences in grading and discussions designed to initiate dialog about community standards.

P53: CORE learning cycle: Anchoring analogical reasoning to the laboratory experience

Author: Mitchell Bruce, University of Maine, USA

Co-Author: Shirly Avargil, Francois Amar and Alice Bruce, University of Maine, USA

Date: 8/3/14

Time: 4:00 PM4:20 PM

Room: MAN 123

Related Symposium: S8

A laboratory learning cycle has been created involving chemical observations, representations, and experimentation (CORE) to help students gain insight across macro and sub-microscopic (atomic scale) domains. A key aspect of the learning cycle is that students make their own chemical observations and then use them in support of an analogical reasoning activity to build representations to help them “see” and explore ideas in the atomic domain. This is followed by asking students to respond to a scientific question by designing, carrying out, and analyzing experimental results in an environment best described as open-inquiry. The presentation will include a comparison with the complementary E-I-A (explore, invent, apply) learning cycle, a description of how to use structure mapping theory to help guide curriculum development, and will include some student data involving analogical thinking and the construction of analogies.