P684: Creating chemistry animations: A comparison of different web-based tools and environments

Author: Sevil Akaygun, Bogazici University, Turkey


Date: 8/6/14

Time: 9:35 AM9:55 AM

Room: LTT 102

Related Symposium: S17

Visualizing chemical structure and dynamics of the particles has been challenging for many students, therefore models and modeling activities have been used in chemistry education. One method of modeling is to let students create their own models by using various tools. As the information technologies have been integrated into teaching and learning chemistry, web-based resources such as animation-generating tools have been used not only as an instructional material but also for eliciting students’ mental models. In this study, two-hundred seventy high school students were asked to generate an animation for the oxygen atom by using either one of the three web-based animation-generating tools: K-Sketch, ChemSense, and Pencil. Students were interviewed after they completed their animations about what they tried to represent and their experiences during this process. Animations generated by student were compared in terms of content, features included in the animation, as well as the capabilities, affordance and limitations of each web-based tool. In addition, twenty students who generated animations by using K-Sketch on their personal computers (PC) were also asked to prepare the same animation by using a tablet. Hence, the usability and of K-Sketch at different technical environments was compared in terms of their affordances. The results of the study suggested that each web-based tool has its own specific characteristics, and the clear differences among these tools would allow instructors and students to select the most appropriate tool for their needs and purposes.

P343: Research-based design and development of a simulation of liquid-vapor equilibrium

Author: Sevil Akaygun, Bogazici University, Turkey

Co-Author: Loretta L. Jones, University of Northern Colorado, USA

Date: 8/4/14

Time: 2:45 PM3:05 PM

Room: MAN 107

Related Symposium: S31

Helping learners to visualize the structures and dynamics of particles through the use of technology is challenging. Animations and simulations can be difficult for learners to interpret and can even lead to new misconceptions. A systematic approach to development based on the findings of cognitive science was used to design, develop, and evaluate a simulation of physical equilibrium that addresses learner needs and misconceptions. Findings from a research study involving 45 chemistry instructors and 94 students were used to design and develop a dynamic computer simulation of liquid-vapor equilibrium that can be viewed at both macroscopic and submicroscopic levels. In the first stage of the process, mental models of the instructors and students were elicited by an open-ended questionnaire. Next, a selected group of participants were interviewed while viewing two dynamic animations of physical equilibrium. Based on these research findings, a dynamic simulation of liquid-vapor equilibrium was designed and developed. The simulation underwent several evaluation and revision steps that involved both experts and students. The final version of the simulation was implemented with a new group of 191 students. It was found to be effective in improving students’ understanding of dynamic equilibrium and was well received by them.