P954: Authentic/alternative assessment, VII: Performance of science majors/non-majors on the categorizing grid

Author: Moises Camacho, University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez, Puerto Rico

Co-Author:

Date: 8/7/14

Time: 9:55 AM10:15 AM

Room: ASH 2302

Related Symposium: S23

The purpose of this study was to investigate the categorization capacity of college students in a categorizing grid of general chemistry compounds and to compare their classification ability with other categorization schemes like conceptual maps and tables. These studies have been done for several semesters with about 50-60 subjects for reproducibility. Almost all students have showed very little knowledge of the classes of compounds and taxonomic rules. There was no significant statistical difference between the mean scores of majors/non-majors. Since classification is pervasive in nature and science this study is relevant in science education.

P956: Performance of college science majors on the construction of a conceptual map of matter

Author: Moises Camacho, University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez, Puerto Rico

Co-Author:

Date: 8/7/14

Time: 10:35 AM10:55 AM

Room: ASH 2302

Related Symposium: S23

The conceptual map is an assessment technique which consists of drawing the classes in which a macroconcept can be divided into its constituent subclasses until reaching the smallest indivisible subunits. The blank framework of the map of matter was given to a sample of about 60 subjects who had completed 8 to 30 semester hours of college chemistry. The results were analyzed for two groups: those that had completed 16 hours of college chemistry and those which had completed 32 hours or more of college chemistry. There was no significant statistical difference between the mean scores of the two groups. According to these results and several studies, 90% of students did not understand the nature of compounds and subclasses. This topic should be relevant for teachers at all levels, since to understand the nature of chemistry we should comprehend the classes and subclasses and how they may behave.