chemistry education research

CER is an interdisciplinary field combining chemistry theory,
educational research, and the psychology of learning.

Our group explores three main areas…

Publications: 2019-2020

Building mental models of a reaction mechanism: the influence of static and animated representations, prior knowledge, and spatial ability
Bongers, Beauvoir, Streja, Northoff, Flynn.
Chemistry Education Research and Practice 2020 21 (2), 496-512

Is Learning Scale Free? Chemistry learning increases EEG fractal power and changes the power law exponent
Bongers, Flynn, Northoff.
Neuroscience Research (in press).

Working with mental models to learn and visualize a new reaction mechanism
Bongers, Northoff, Flynn.
Chemistry Education Research and Practice 2019 20 (3), 554-569

Publications: 2018 and earlier

Click here for a list of current publications on Amanda’s ORCID page

Sustainability in chemistry

Chemistry has a central role to play in solving global challenges, but is this how we teach chemistry? We are exploring how sustainability is incorporated into general and organic chemistry education in Canada, and if a curriculum centered on sustainability improves students’ success and attitudes!

Cognition & learning

We’re combining research tools from educational research, cognitive psychology, and neuroscience to study learning in science. This project is interdisciplinary at its core; our goals are to both impact classrooms and inform future research. With our approach, hypotheses from learning can be translated into research questions to be tested with cognitive science, and similarly, discoveries in cognitive science can be translated into practices to be implemented and researched in the educational context.

self-concept in education

Chemists are skilled in asking questions, developing and using models, and interpreting data, but are educators helping students develop these skills, or testing their abilities in these areas (hint: no!)? We’re exploring ways to incorporate these Science Practices into learning and assessments, and if these changes increase students’ self-concept as scientists, attitudes towards chemistry, and academic achievement.