Multiple Representations in Chemical Education

  • John K. Gilbert
  • David Treagust

Part of the Models and Modeling in Science Education book series (MMSE, volume 4)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Introduction: Macro, Submicro and Symbolic Representations and the Relationship Between Them: Key Models in Chemical Education

  3. The Challenges Faced in Teaching and Learning About the Representational Triplet

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 9-10
    2. Bob Bucat, Mauro Mocerino
      Pages 11-29
    3. Berry van Berkel, Albert Pilot, Astrid M. W. Bulte
      Pages 31-54
    4. Keith S. Taber
      Pages 75-105
  4. Improving Existing Pedagogy in Respect of the Triplet Relationship

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 107-108
    2. Kim Chwee Daniel Tan, Ngoh Khang Goh, Lian Sai Chia, David F. Treagust
      Pages 137-150
    3. Bette Davidowitz, Gail Chittleborough
      Pages 169-191
  5. Classroom Solutions to the Challenges Posed by the Triplet Relationship

  6. Back Matter
    Pages 351-367

About this book


Chemistry seeks to provide qualitative and quantitative explanations for the observed behaviour of elements and their compounds. Doing so involves making use of three types of representation: the macro (the empirical properties of substances); the sub-micro (the natures of the entities giving rise to those properties); and the symbolic (the number of entities involved in any changes that take place). Although understanding this triplet relationship is a key aspect of chemical education, there is considerable evidence that students find great difficulty in achieving mastery of the ideas involved. In bringing together the work of leading chemistry educators who are researching the triplet relationship at the secondary and university levels, the book discusses the learning involved, the problems that students encounter, and successful approaches to teaching. Based on the reported research, the editors argue for a coherent model for understanding the triplet relationship in chemical education.


chemical education chemical representation chemistry curriculum learning teaching

Editors and affiliations

  • John K. Gilbert
    • 1
    • 2
  • David Treagust
    • 3
  1. 1.1 Croswell Cottages, Goose LaneMayford WokingSurrey
  2. 2.1 Croswell CottagesMayfordUK
  3. 3.Curtin University of Technology Science & Mathematics Education CentrePerthAustralia

Bibliographic information