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Teaching Chemistry As A Cross Cultural Subject: It & Linguistics

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2006 Annual Conference & Exposition


Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006



Conference Session

Use of Technology to Improve Teaching and Learning

Tagged Division

Educational Research and Methods

Page Count


Page Numbers

11.1201.1 - 11.1201.22



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Paper Authors


Margherita Landucci Liceo Artistico Statale

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Margherita Landucci is a graduate in Physical Chemistry of Pisa University. She has worked at CNR (the National Council for Research)in spectroscopy and electrochemistry and taught at Pisa University. She has published works in The Journal of Chemical Society. She is the Italian coordinator of the project "Science and Technology in Society" promoted by The Association for Science Education,UK, and is teaching Phisical Chemistry and Materials Tecnologies at the Liceo Artistico Statale of Venice, Venezia.

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Fabio Garganego Municipality of Venice

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Fabio Garganego is a graduate in Electronic Engeneering of Padua University. He is a specialist in telecomunications and is at present IT Senior consultant at the Municipality of Venice, Venezia.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Teaching Chemistry as a Cross-cultural Subject IT & Linguistics


The main theme of this paper is the language of chemical formulae rather than the language explaining the chemistry ; the focus of our interest is the code used in writing chemical formulae.

This paper describes the nature and scope of the research project started by an out-of-school multidisciplinary team set up in the ’90s ; the research was conducted in Italy in different socio-cultural contexts in technical as well as classical secondary schools on students 14–16 and 16-18 respectively.

The aim of the work was on the one hand to investigate as to whether or not the teaching- learning process speeds up when students are provided with a previous mnemonic knowledge of chemical formulae and, on the other hand, to test the feasibility of associating old and well-known natural language concepts with chemical concepts.

This work discusses how the communication on chemical topics has been improved by getting the student:

• To master the world language of chemistry.

This task was accomplished through a computer card-game based on the chemistry code.

The software CHICKA (Code Helping In Chemical Knowledge Acquisition) was built on the whole set of chemistry rules for composing inorganic chemical formulae, which was translated into game rules.

The software is articulated in levels and sublevels of increasing difficulty ; the cards represent the symbols of the elements and the structure of complex ions ; each formula composed appears on the monitor only if it is correct : it will be one of the hundreds formulae of inorganic compounds.

The software does not expect, however, any learning in its users for in the learning-mode the computer has the first hand and the second player is asked to reproduce the computer moves.

But in the tests and tournaments the computer stops being the tutor and becomes the opponent. Here the player can even score higher than the computer because some results are achievable by chance and not only by the competence in chemistry acquired throughout the previous games.

Throughout the game valency, anfoterism, electronegativity and stereochemistry are inadvertently learned.

The game is for any user the world over as no nomenclature is used.

Landucci, M., & Garganego, F. (2006, June), Teaching Chemistry As A Cross Cultural Subject: It & Linguistics Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. 10.18260/1-2--260

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