A Study on the Effect of Using Problem-Based Learning in Organic Chemistry for Web-Based Learning

Article excerpt


I. Research background and research incentive

Traditional teaching is centered on teachers with its preferred emphasis upon the learning of facts. Under this framework, students passively accept the knowledge instilled to them and place it in their short-term memory. The result of this teaching methodology, therefore, is far from the objective of scientific education, and the students cultivated under this framework is relatively lacking in judgmental, inferential explanation abilities. This is widely regarded as the reason that has caused the decline of students' learning efficiency. Real wisdom can only be achieved through the way of fostering students' ability to resolve the problem, making them able to, regardless of the environment involved, adapt by following the progressive steps, added with the knowledge of reapplication of living experience. Modern education, apart from reading, writing, and calculation, ought to elevate the skills of effective use of diverse languages and use of computer so as to reinforce their ability to adapt to rapid change and problem-solving ability so as to foster their habit of using hands and brain simultaneously. Therefore, reinforcing students' abilities in thinking and problem-solving has become one of the same objectives among teachers (Shyu Hsin-Yih (1), 1995). Domestically, Grade 1-9 Curriculum is now rampantly promoted so as to fully respond to the rapid change of human resource requirements, laying stress upon students as the core issue, and upon their learning experience as the center to foster civilian's ten fundamental abilities--a good strategy complying with the current requirement. However, for lack of concrete operational models as a reference, teachers found it hard to execute it and thus remained stagnant in terms of their action--especially the predicament of falling short of the integration of information technology into teaching experience-causing destitute waste of educational resources, a great pity indeed.

In recent years, with the rapid development of Internet, global Internet (WWW) on this framework has become one of the most regarded media. Global Internet can simultaneously provide words, sound, and image as multimedia information, and it has turned out to be one of the most vital devices employed to develop Internet teaching. Problem-based organic chemistry learning website, combining multimedia image and video effects, not merely provides learners with a new path to learning, but also, with the aid of integrating enormous resources reserved in computer network, enables learners to be engaged in Internet teaching as long as they have computer available-- regardless of where they are--a breakthrough for the confinements of time and place for learning. Meanwhile, the function of multi-option provided by Internet multimedia may help secure full comprehension by virtue of repetitious learning with ease and convenience.

In the aspect of curriculum content, this research singled out the unit of organic chemistry due to the consideration that organic chemistry, to those ordinary learners, is viewed as the one laying more stress upon memory and descriptive content; a number of students thus have difficulty learning. And yet, organic chemistry is closely linked to our daily life; therefore, we hope that we may show students how to think with the aid of common sense questions through our daily life--making use of progressive explanation to help learners to further understand more advanced knowledge with regard to organic chemistry.

Among all the researches concerned with cognitive style, field independence is the theory most valued by scholars, and is most widely researched and applied to solving educational questions. (Witkin & Goodenough (2), 1977). There are many theories in relation to field independence and field dependence, and their research accomplishments are most predominant.

Witkin and those involved argued that what is called cognitive style is referred to as the habitually used unanimous mode when an individual tackles those consciousness, signals, information, authentic context, and activities of human relationship. …