Chemistry Blog

Category Archive: chemical education

Aug 20

Happy Berzelius Day


Today, August 20th, marks the birthday of Swedish chemist Jöns Jacob Berzelius (1779–1848). I decided to write this post because, frankly, I knew nothing about Berzelius. He seems to be something of an “unsung hero”, despite his important contributions to science. I thought I’d take the opportunity to collect some key facts about this visionary …

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Aug 19

Writing an Online Organic Chemistry Quiz

NOT what my exam questions will look like...

Lately, I’ve been very interested in using my university’s Learning Management System (we use Moodle, others use Blackboard or something else) to administer quizzes to my students, but as an organic chemist, I’ve been hesitant to do so. Primarily because I don’t want to ask a bunch of multiple choice questions. That’s not what my …

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Jul 12

Twitter Brain’s Chemistry Novel (and other book) recommendations

I’ve been looking for an easy to read book (fiction or non-fiction) to send out to chemistry students before they arrive at Uni. The plan is to have all our first years read the same book before they arrive. With any luck it will give them something to chat about and give our first few …

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May 12

Guest Post: The Periodic Table of T-Shirts.

Periodic Table

Guest post by Dr Simon Norris a Chemistry teacher at a school in the UK. As his alter ego The Cycling Scientist he has visited primary schools with his science road show. His current interests are using IT to enhance teaching and learning and using social media to create personal CPD for teaching colleagues. It’s a simple …

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Mar 13

WWWTP – Chemistry Teacher Recruiters

Screen Shot 2013-03-10 at 18.52.29

This advert just popped up whilst I was reading something on the Guardian science pages. I clicked on it and it took me to the UK’s Department of Education who, in conjunction with the Royal Society of Chemistry are offering chemistry graduates a £20,000 bursary to start teacher training. Good news. So what’s wrong with this picture? Take …

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Feb 07

Replicating Rosalind Franklin’s DNA diffraction experiment.

The 60th anniversary of Watson and Crick’s DNA structure paper is fast approaching (25th April). So I’ve been hunting for nice DNA demos. My favourite so far is a replication of Rosalind Franklin and Raymond Gosling’s diffraction experiment (which appeared in the same issue of Nature).  Franklin and Gosling’s paper featured the now famous photo …

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