When September Ends…

This seems like the longest shortest summer so far. I’m really not sure what precisely I’ve done and yet I know I’ve done quite a bit. I also know I haven’t done much of what was personally important to me, and a good bit of stuff that wasn’t but that needed to be done. I’m…

Variety in Chemistry Education: The Keynotes #vicephec15

In the absence of a coherent way to structure my thoughts post conference, I shall start randomly and allow this post to meander somewhat. There may be greater coherence in later posts. My note taking was completely through Twitter this year which was an interesting experience but the collective notes made by all participating are…

All cleared up

REPOST: This was first posted on Endless Possibilities v2.0 back in May 2009*. As we were recently discussing chemophobia and different definitions of ‘chemical’, it seems relevant. *I’m trying to work out how old Endless Possibilities is, I think it started in 2008…   There are several cultural confusions that cause problems in the chemical…

Do Chemists have Chemophobia? An Update #vicephec15

This is the blog post that accompanies my talk at #VicePhec15, Variety in Chemistry Education. If some presenters can elect to flip their presentation, no reason why I can’t blog mine! ETA:  The presentation may be viewed on SlideShare Do Chemists have Chemophobia? An Update from Katherine Haxton I use the word Chemophobia advisedly. As…

In which course design is compared to sausages.

This is one of those posts that needed to be ‘sat on’ for a few months. It was written in February 2014 and now that we’ve finished designing the modules, it seems reasonable to post it now. We’re still not ‘done’ because some of the modules wont run until 16/17 academic year. Possibly this is…

A recap of previous Variety in Chem Ed conferences. #vicephec15

I was contemplating a tweet from Simon Lancaster the other day where he asks how many people can lay their hands on their conference notes from a conference they attended a couple of years ago. I have blog posts! I also have written notes and various notes made on various computers. I’m grateful for the…

Lecture Recording Redux

Back in January I wrote about lecture recordings (http://www.possibilitiesendless.com/2015/01/on-the-recording-of-lectures/) which was a bit of a ramble about their use as a revision tool. I’ve been thinking more about it recently as I’m drafting a paper for Keele’s JADE publication (https://jadekeele.wordpress.com/) and it’s timely because we’re starting to look at campus wide lecture capture. Over the…

#blimage Can’t see the wood for the trees!

I’ve been challenged by @annakwood (who blogs here: http://learningfrome-learning.blogspot.co.uk/ and if you’re not reading it, you probably should be) to write a blog post as part of the #blimage challenge (details: http://steve-wheeler.blogspot.co.uk/2015/07/blimey-its-blimage.html). You can read Anna’s post here: http://learningfrome-learning.blogspot.co.uk/2015/07/the-colours-of-active-learning.html). This is the image Anna has sent me and I love it, particularly because I spend a silly amount…

A Stinky Colourful Chemical Mystery

I’m running an outreach activity and we’ll be making alginate worms. I was testing my sodium alginate solutions yesterday as they tend to go off a bit. Usually this is demonstrated by no longer forming beautiful worms or spheres on addition to calcium chloride solution but rather forming slime. I suspect the polymer chains are…

Exam Style Question – an Experiment

We’ve been discussing exam style questions this weekend and have some frustrations about a certain style of question, one of the general form: [scenario] [two aspects that should be compared in context of scenario][selection of best aspect and justification]. In the interests of subject neutrality, I’ve drafted an exam style question of this nature. How would…