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  1. Within chemistry education, there are various curricular and pedagogical approaches that aim to improve teaching and learning in chemistry. Efforts to characterize these transformations have primarily focused on student reasoning and performance, and little work has been done to explore student perceptions of curricular and pedagogical transformations and whether these perceptions align with the transformational intent. To complement our previous work on the Organic Chemistry, Life, the Universe, and Everything (OCLUE) curriculum, we developed this exploratory study to determine if students had perceived the goals of the transformation. As in our previous research on OCLUE, we compared perceptions between OCLUE and a more traditional organic chemistry course. Using inductive and deductive qualitative methodologies, we analyzed student responses to three open-eneded questions focused on how students perceived they were expected to think, what they found most difficult, and how they perceived they were assessed. The findings were classified into three superodinate themes: one where students perceived they were expected to learn things as rote knowledge, such as memorization (“Rote Knowledge”), another where students perceived they were expected to use their knowledge (“Use of Knowledge”), and responses that used vague, generalized language, were uninformative, or did not address the questions asked (“Other”).more »Students in these two courses responded very differently to the open-ended questions with students in OCLUE being more likely to perceive they were expected to use their knowledge, while students in the traditional course reported rote learning or memorization more frequently. As the findings evolved, our interpretations and discussions were influenced by sociocultural perspectives and other cultural frameworks. We believe this approach can provide meaningful insights into transformational intent and certain features of classroom cultures.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 4, 2023