A ChemPath to supplement POGIL activities

Jeffery M. Schwehm, Lakeland College
A ChemPath has been developed to supplement POGIL activities from "Chemistry: A Guided Inquiry" by R. Moog and J. Farrell (5th Edition).
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A ChemPath has been developed to supplement in-class Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) activities from the book "Chemistry: A Guided Inquiry" by R. Moog and J. Farrell. ChemPaths is the Student Portal of the Chemical Education Digital Library, and is used by instructors to build a "pathway" which brings together web-based applications and resources, including an on-line chemistry textbook, into one cohesive package for students. This ChemPath includes pre-activity assignments with links to relevant websites, tutorials or applications that prepare the students for POGIL in-class activities.

Learning Goals

The goal of the activities is help students in the General Chemistry POGIL class prepare for in-class POGIL activities using "Chemistry: A Guided Inquiry" by R. Moog and J. Farrell.
The students will begin the concept exploration portion of the POGIL learning cycle as part of the Pre-activity homework assignment using the ChemPath housed as part of the Chemistry Education Digital Library (ChemEdDL).
The answers to the pre-activity questions can be sent to the instructor using blackboard or Moodle so that the instructor can use the answers to the pre-activity questions to determine how to facilitate the associated POGIL activity in class more effectively based on the knowledge the students have developed prior to coming to class via the Pre-Activity.

Context for Use

The Pre-Activities in the Chempath would work very well in an Introductory Course using Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning or some other type of active learning methodology. The pre-activities are designed to be homework assignments primarily and to be done prior to class.

Description and Teaching Materials

A ChemPath has been developed to supplement POGIL activities from "Chemistry: A Guided Inquiry" by R. Moog and J. Farrell (5th Edition). The ChemPath is found at the link below:

Information on the POGIL Activities found in "Chemistry: A Guided Inquiry" by Moog and Farrell upon which the ChemPath is based can be found at the following link:

Teaching Notes and Tips

The following the recommend way to use the Pre-Activities in a POGIL Classroom:

1. Students do POGIL Pre-Activity using ChemPath/Moodle with an online assessment of their understanding of the Pre-Activities' concepts prior to class period as homework.

2. Students work in groups on related POGIL activities in class.

3. Instructor uses data from Pre-activity assessment to connect Pre-activity concepts to POGIL activity concepts.

4. Major Concepts of POGIL Activity are emphasized.

5. Suggested practice problems are assigned to prepare for test/quiz on POGIL Activity content.

6. Beginning of Next Period: Short Quiz on Content from previous class period.


In the past, I have used short quizzes on content from the POGIL activities that were completed during the previous class period. In addition, feedback from the answers to questions on Pre-Activities will be used to determine how well students understand the concepts prior to performing the POGIL Activity in class.

References and Resources

Many of the on-line activities and short readings used within the ChemPath are part of the Chemistry Education Digital Library at http://www.chemeddl.org/

In addition, many of the applets used in the Chempath come from the Free Online Science Interactive Similulations at PhET at http://phet.colorado.edu

The ChemEd DL Summit Resource Course houses all of the submissions from two-year and four-year college faculty members who have designed resources using the Chem Ed DL (Chemical Educational Digital Library) for use in organic chemistry and general chemistry classrooms and laboratories.

This resource is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grants No. NSF-DUE 1044239 and NSF-DUE 0937796. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.