The Sceptical Chymist | Blogroll: Chemistry education

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Editor’s note: As we continue to invite bloggers out there in the wild to compose our monthly Blogroll column, Michael Seery penned the August 2015 column.


Embedding scholarship into the teaching of chemistry.

With teaching quality high on the agenda, chemistry education research is beginning to emerge as a discipline within some chemistry departments. Tina Overton writes on the RSC’s Education in Chemistry blog of the need to support staff who wish to carry out pedagogic research in chemistry departments, including supporting the development of expertise and creating a community of practice. In the case of the latter, chemists in the Twitterverse might like to follow and contribute to #chemed.

Lots of expertise is available on the Staff and Educational Development Association blog, currently running a series called #53ideas by Graham Gibbs. These are short posts on various thoughts and ideas that “teachers should know about” underpinned by substantial literature. Some of Gibbs’s own work was with the chemistry department at Oxford. In a recent post, he advocated a more pragmatic framework for programme design in lieu of distinct educational objectives.

Greg Ashman keeps a well-written blog on cognitive science (and educational research generally). His post on ‘cognitive load theory’ challenges some widely held assumptions about what ‘guided instruction’ is, raising the bar for all of us interested in improving student learning. Ashman’s blog is one of the many compiled by the aggregating website The Echo Chamber which is well worth a perusal to find decent blogs about education.

Back to chemistry: while the Compound Interest posters are deservedly well known, lots of use could be made of the This Week in Chemistry series. I’d love to see student-generated examples shared with #TWIChem.

Written by Michael Seery, who blogs at and tweets as @seerymk.


[As mentioned in this post, we’re posting the monthly blogroll column here on the Sceptical Chymist. This is the August 2015 article]

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