PDF size: 1.2 MbAbstract: In this ambitious book, Eric Scerri, based on the work of several researchers linked tothe development of the periodic table, tries to build a new philosophy of science. Mostof these characters, identified by himself as “intermediaries”, are from our presentunknown and their contributions, some correct and others not. Through seven chapters,which represent approximately three quarters of the total content, Scerri relates the life,problems and contributions of seven “scientists”, mostly chemists but also economists andengineers. The last chapter called “Bringing Things Together”, which occupies the fourthpart of the book responds to the subtitle of the same “a New Philosophy of Science”, andaddresses the thorny issue. Scerri tries to convince the reader, without providing enoughproof of it, that the development of all science, not only chemistry, not only around theperiodic table, is evolutionary and not totalitarian and sharply revolutionary. Before him,other authors from different positions had indicated practically the same. This meansthat we are not faced with a new philosophy of science but with a vibrant provocationabout the development of it, which deserves to be read.Keywords.
PDF size: 1.09 MbAbstract: A layered interpretation of the history of chemistry is discussed throughchemical revolutions. A chemical revolution (or rupture, discontinuity, transition) mainlyby emplacement, instead of replacement, procedures were identifed by: a radical reintepretation of existing thought recognized by contemporaries themselves, which means theappearance of new concepts and the arrival of new theories; the use of new instrumentschanged the way in which its practitioners looked and worked in the world and throughexemplars, new entities were discovered or incorporated; the opening of new subdisciplines, which produced, separated scientifc communities. The fourth chemical revolution,fundamentally characterized by the incorporation of new instruments in chemical practicesis discussed.Keywords.
PDF size: 529 KbAbstract: A new chronology is introduced to address the history of chemistry, witheducational purposes, particularly for the end of the twentieth century and here identified asthe fifth chemical revolution. Each revolution are considered in terms of the Kuhniannotion of ‘exemplar,’ rather than ‘paradigm.’ This approach enables the incorporation ofinstruments, as well as concepts and the rise of new subdisciplines into the revolutionaryprocess and provides a more adequate representation of such periods of development andconsolidation. The fifth revolution developed from 1973 to 1999 and is characterized by adeep transformation in the very heart of chemistry. That is to say, the size and type ofobjects (substances), the way in which they must be done and the time in which they aretransformed. In one way or another, chemistry’ limits had been set out.Keywords. PDF size: 1.05 MbAbstract: This paper attempts to show one of the ways history of chemistry can be teachable for chemistry teachers, it means something more than an undifferentiated mass of names and dates, establishing a temporal framework based on chemical entities that all students use.
Represents a difficult equilibrium between over-simplification versus overelaboration. Hence, following the initial proposal of Jensen (J Chem Educ 75:679–687, 817–828, 961–969, 1998), reconstructs the history of one of chemistry’ dimensions (composition-structure) in terms of three revolutionary moments. These moments are considered in terms of the Kuhnian notion of ‘exemplar,’ rather than ‘paradigm.’ This approach enables the incorporation of instruments, as well as concepts into the revolutionary process and provides a more adequate representation of such periods of development and consolidation. These three revolutions are called by the chemical structural entities that emerged from the same: atoms (1766–1808); molecules and isomers (1831–1860); electrons and isotopes (1897–1923).Keywords. PDF size: 296 KbAbstract: The synthesis of new chemical compounds makes it the most productive science. Unfortunately chemistry education practice has not been driven to any great extent by research findings, philosophical positions or advances in new ways of approaching knowledge.
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The changes that have occurred in textbooks during the past three decades do not show any real recognition of these. Despite previously reported different types of models in this paper, from an ‘empirical reliability with minimal realism’ approach to realism, a new simple and broad definition, a typology of models and their relation with modeling is presented.Keywords. PDF size: 599 KbAbstract: The graphic organizer called here heuristic diagram as an improvement of Gowin’s Vee heuristic is proposed as a tool to teach history of science.
Heuristic diagrams have the purpose of helping students (or teachers, or researchers) to understand their own research considering that asks and problem-solving are central to scientific activity. The left side originally related in Gowin’s Vee with philosophies, theories, models, laws or regularities now agrees with Toulmin’s concepts (language, models as representation techniques and application procedures). Mexican science teachers without experience in science education research used the heuristic diagram to learn about the history of chemistry considering also in the left side two different historical times: past and present.
Through a semantic differential scale teachers’ attitude to the heuristic diagram was evaluated and its usefulness was demonstrated.Keywords. PDF size: 212 KbAbstract: Today there are little more of 3 million chemist all over the world producing about 800,000 papers a year. They produce new substances – from some hundreds in 1800 to about 20 million now – the vast majority artificial. This rate is growing quite fast. Once the majority of chemistry teachers all over the world used textbooks as the main (sometimes the only) source of information, we became, without wanting to. History teachers! If ‘scientific literacy’ is the aim of science lessons in school, it is much more than the literacy now developed in science classrooms.
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It must include an understanding of the nature and process by which scientific activities are carried out. Recognition of the exponentially chemistry knowledge growth and the incompleteness of the current chemistry textbooks are thus intimately related to recognition of the need for recurrent historical teaching models.Keywords.