Syllabus: CHM 594: Modeling Instruction in Chemistry II (2 semester hours)

Summers at Arizona State University


Prerequisites: In-service teacher of chemistry or physics, or instructor approval.
CHM 594: Modeling Instruction in Chemistry I, or instructor approval.


Course learning objectives and content: In the first chemistry workshop, you were introduced to principles of modeling instruction, then learned how organizing a chemistry course around a series of particle models of increasing complexity could make the experience more coherent to students. You were given tested instructional materials for the nine units that we consider the core of a high school or post-secondary introductory chemistry course, and you worked through the activities alternately in roles of student or teacher. You practiced Socratic questioning techniques necessary to promote meaningful classroom discourse. You studied articles in chemistry education research on students’ naēve conceptions.


In the second workshop, you will be given the opportunity to debrief your efforts to implement a modeling approach in your chemistry classes; you will then explore draft materials for units that address the following topics/concepts:

Unit 10 – Models of the atom
From an examination of the radiation emitted by hot metals and atomic gases, we conclude that atoms must have internal structure not explained by Thomson’s model.

Unit 11 – Periodic Table and bonding
We extend the Bohr model to many-electron atoms, using it to provide a structural explanation for the organization of the Periodic Table, and to examine models of covalent bonding in compounds.

Unit 12 – A particle model of temperature
We know that when chemical energy of the system changes, the thermal energy also changes, eventually resulting in a transfer of energy between the system and the surroundings. We adopt a "kinetic" view of temperature to account for the direction of energy flow.

(We provide enrichment on entropy (for advanced courses): the probable direction of change. We adopt a "probability" view to account for the direction of processes involving both structural and thermal change; this approach puts “dynamics” back into thermodynamics.)

Unit 13 – Equilibrium
We return to a “kinetic” view to model a variety of processes as they approach and reach the state of equilibrium.

Unit 14 – Acids and bases

     We extend what we’ve learned about equilibrium to examine the Bronsted-Lowry model of acids and bases.


Because these concepts are ones with which teachers have less direct experience, as much emphasis will be placed on deep discussion of this chemistry content as on pedagogy.