13 January 2014
High School/Introductory Chemistry, Chemical Education Research , Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary, Distance Learning/Self Instruction , Inquiry-Based/Discovery Learning, Testing/Assessment, Alcohols, Drugs/Pharmaceuticals, Enzymes, Oxidation/Reduction
We developed the Alcohol Pharmacology Education Partnership (APEP), a set of modules designed to integrate a topic of interest (alcohol) with concepts in chemistry and biology for high school students. Chemistry and biology teachers ( n = 156) were recruited nationally to field-test APEP in a controlled study. Teachers obtained professional development either at a conference-based workshop (NSTA or NCSTA) or via distance learning to learn how to incorporate the APEP modules into their teaching. They field-tested the modules in their classes during the following year. Teacher knowledge of chemistry and biology concepts increased significantly following professional development, and was maintained for at least a year. Their students ( n = 14 014) demonstrated significantly higher scores when assessed for knowledge of both basic and advanced chemistry and biology concepts compared to students not using APEP modules in their classes the previous year. Higher scores were achieved as the number of modules used increased. These findings are consistent with our previous studies, demonstrating higher scores in chemistry and biology after students use modules that integrate topics interesting to them, such as drugs (the Pharmacology Education Partnership).