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Korean Journal of General Education 2018;12(6):341-361.
Published online December 30, 2018.
Implications of Change in General Chemistry Curriculum at University
Bokyoung Lee
대학 일반화학 교과과정 변화의 쟁점과 함의
Since the basic science education including general chemistry is a key element of liberal arts education in American universities where liberal arts education has been prevalent, many revisions of general chemistry curriculum have been announced at the national level since the 20th century. This paper examines the curricular review of general chemistry in the United States and draws out the trends and issues of change. The general chemistry curriculum of American universities has been changed from the descriptive inorganic chemistry in the early 20th century to conceptual and theory based knowledge system in the 1950s, and to contextual and inquiry based chemistry in 1990s. In the reorganization over the course of the century, the core idea of chemistry has been derived from various contexts and has been established as a standard of general chemistry contents. Consideration for motivation and expectations of non-students has increased over time. The implications of the reorganization of the general chemistry curriculum in the United States over the past century have been that the general chemistry curriculum emphasizes not only the aspects of chemistry as a knowledge system but also the processes of development and the role and value of chemistry in individual life and society. In order to realize this, it is necessary to reorganize the conceptual and the social context, rather than focus on the broad concepts or theories. It is necessary to review the fact that the general chemistry courses of Korean universities is still focused on the knowledge itself.
Key Words: college chemistry, general chemistry curriculum, contextual approach, inquary based, core ideas, curricular developments


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