Session S56b (Wednesday, 2pm, Osmond 101)

P755: Adaptation of a large general chemistry program to an atoms first approach

Susan Hendrickson (University of Colorado, USA)

At the University of Colorado at Boulder, we teach first semester general chemistry to approximately 1500 students over the course of an academic year.  In the fall 2011 we began incorporating an atoms first approach into our general chemistry program, first in a section of 40 students and then in a class of 500 during the spring 2012.  Future plans include a summer session class of approximately 100 students and finally two sections with a combined enrollment of approximately 850 during the fall 2012.  Strategies and successes to making this change in such a large program, including modifications to existing weekly recitation activities and lab experiments, will be discussed.  Results from both concept surveys and attitudinal surveys will be presented to compare a traditional curriculum to the atoms first approach.


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