Spatial Reasoning: Improvement Of Imagery And Abilities In Sophomore Organic Chemistry. Perspective To Enhance Student Learning

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Susan F. Hornbuckle
Latanya Gobin
Stephanie N. Thurman


Organic Chemistry, Spatial Reasoning, Visualization


Spatial reasoning has become a demanded skill for students pursuing a science emphasis to compete with the dynamic growth of our professional society. The ability to reason spatially includes explorations in memory recollection and problem solving capabilities as well as critical thinking and reasoning skills. With these advancements, educational requirements seek reassurance in that efficient learning skills can be embedded in science curricula. Organic chemistry is a source in which abilities such as spatial reasoning can benefit students intending to thrive in scientific communities. This study of instructional development in organic chemistry seeks to determine if spatial reasoning can be improved by exposing stereo-chemical techniques from the Purdue Visualization Rotation Test (ROT) to students who have not taken organic chemistry and have science oriented educational goals. We sought to determine two purposes: to gauge how much spatial reasoning a student possessed prior to the course, and to test if spatial ability can be improved in students who present low ability over the span of the three month course. Results show significance in that spatial reasoning can be improved through statistical analysis in students who showed below average qualities.


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