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Students' visualization of metallic bonding and the malleability of metals

  • Students' visualization of metallic bonding and the malleability of metals
  • Routledge
  • 2014
    • Hong Kong
    • 1997.7 onwards
    • Secondary Education
  • This study investigated the mental representations of metallic bonding and the malleability of metals held by three male students aged 14-15 (Year 10) who were attending a Hong Kong school. One student was selected by their chemistry teacher as representing each of the highest, the medium, and the lowest level of attainment in chemistry in a school that admitted students of average general attainment. The students were interviewed and their understandings probed through their provision of drawings and their interpretation of the diagrams that had been previously used by their teacher. Dual coding theory was used to interpret the relative significance of visual and verbal input and the interaction between the two for their understanding. There was evidence that students relied on verbal recall in providing their initial understandings and showed an appreciation of the nature of the structural components of the electron-sea model of metallic bonding. However, they varied in terms of their appreciation of the electrostatic force which was responsible for the malleability of metals. The study suggests that a clearer understanding of the electrostatic force involved can be attained when students experience visual and verbal representations simultaneously, a conclusion supported by dual coding theory. Principles for good practice in using diagrams in teaching are discussed.
    [Copyright of International Journal of Science Education is the property of Routledge. Full article may be available at the publisher's website:]
    • English
  • Journal Articles
    • 09500693
  • 2014-06-30

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