The development of integrated chemistry-based experiments implications for the teaching of environmental chemistry in the Vietnamese context

Tran, Hoa Thi (2000) The development of integrated chemistry-based experiments implications for the teaching of environmental chemistry in the Vietnamese context. Research Master thesis, Victoria University of Technology.


A survey of environmental chemistry laboratory experiments in the Journal of Chemical Education (ACS) and Education in Chemistry (RCS) has been carried out from 1969 to the present. The experiments have been categorized as being related to the areas of either air, water or soil. Over the same period of time, a similar survey has been carried out for commonly used environmental chemistry textbooks, whereby the relative number of pages have been assessed which are devoted to the same areas. The data obtained from both of these analyses indicate that the area of soil is seriously underrepresented in the environmental chemistry curriculum. Further analysis of this material also highlights the failure of many experiments to reflect "real world" laboratory processes such as sample preparation, data analysis and quality control/assurance. To help alleviate these deficiencies, a strategy was designed to develop several soil-related laboratory experiments which would not only reflect real world practices in a developed country such as Australia, but which would also be appropriate for educational programs in a developing country such as Vietnam. In order to gain the necessary skills and experience, the author undertook a five month work experience program at the Australian Government Analytical Laboratories (AGAL). The program focussed on the routine analysis of hydrocarbons in soil samples. A programmed schedule allowed the author to experience all aspects of the procedure, from sampling through to reporting. Following the work experience program, the author undertook a visit to her home country of Vietnam in order to conduct a modified Dephi survey of leading Vietnamese educators, considered expert in the area of environmental chemistry education. The survey was constructed to assess the requirements for the design and implementation of undergraduate environmental chemistry experiments in the Vietnamese context. The Delphi study successfully converged after two rounds. Both the AGAL experience and the results of the Delphi survey have been used to formulate environmental chemistry laboratory experiments which help address the deficiency of soil-related experiments in the current curriculum, reflect the professional skills of real world environmental scientists, and which are well-suited for implementation in developing countries such as Vietnam. Attention has also been paid to international requirements for environmental education and to the advantages of the integrated approach with respect to the different areas of chemistry.

Additional Information

Master of Education

Item type Thesis (Research Master thesis)
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Education
Historical > FOR Classification > 0399 Other Chemical Sciences
Historical > FOR Classification > 1399 Other Education
Keywords environmental chemistry, education, Vietnam, soil experiments, Australia
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