Pre-service chemistry teachers' competencies in the laboratory: a cross-grade study in solution preparation


Karatas F. Ö.

CHEMISTRY EDUCATION RESEARCH AND PRACTICE, vol.17, no.1, pp.100-110, 2016 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 17 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2016
  • Doi Number: 10.1039/c5rp00147a
  • Title of Journal : CHEMISTRY EDUCATION RESEARCH AND PRACTICE
  • Page Numbers: pp.100-110

Abstract

One of the prerequisites for chemistry teacher candidates is to demonstrate certain laboratory skills. This article aims to determine and discuss the competencies of pre-service chemistry teachers in a chemistry laboratory context working with solution chemistry content. The participants in this study consisted of a group of pre-service chemistry teachers in the first to fifth years of a chemistry teacher education program. The participants were given individual tasks of preparing solutions of a certain concentration. The tasks included two steps: calculation and application. The participants were also observed in terms of the degree to which they followed the laboratory safety rules. Overall, the pre-service teachers made numerous errors in calculating the correct amounts of a substance and preparing a solution, as well as obeying the safety rules. Interestingly, the participants' laboratory competencies showed a trend along their grade levels; namely, a slight increase and then a sharp decrease in their solution preparation knowledge and skills that could be associated with retention loss or decay over time in the absence of rehearsal and/or ill-encoding. These results may contribute to the discussion on virtual and physical laboratories in chemistry education.