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The catalytic oxidation of ammonia : an interactive web-based virtual experiment and teaching and learning resource

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conference contribution
posted on 18.10.2007, 11:37 by Christine Turner, John Kennedy
How often do you perform a chemistry demonstration in a fume cupboard? For science teachers, the response is ‘almost every day’. Now answer this: How often are you sure that every student in the class can see the demonstration clearly? For most science teachers, the reply changes to ‘almost never’. With many class sizes in secondary schools approaching the thirty mark, it is not surprising that demonstrating a chemical reaction effectively can be problematical, with many students not being able to get close enough to see what is occurring. It is in this area that ICT can enhance lessons, particularly when it enables students to ‘see’ something that they would not be able to observe by just carrying out the practical. The animation that ICT can provide links the physical changes students observe with the chemistry theory and can give students a better understanding of what occurs during a reaction. ICT also ensures high-quality images and a far more dynamic presentation of the processes than has been previously possible. The user has total control over the images shown and is able to go back to the video clips or pictures to check their own understanding, or clarify a point, all at their own pace. With the above in mind, we aimed to create a virtual experiment to show students a reaction that they would otherwise be unable to easily observe as a demonstration in the laboratory fume cupboard or complete themselves as a class practical due to the hazards and expense of the materials used.



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TURNER, C. and KENNEDY, J., 2007. The catalytic oxidation of ammonia : an interactive web-based virtual experiment and teaching and learning resource. IN: E-learning in Science and Design and Technology : Proceedings of IDATER On-line Conference 2005 - 2006. Loughborough : Loughborough University, pp. 168-176


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