Comparative Effect of Two Problem-solving Instructional Strategies on Students’ Achievement in Stoichiometry
More details
Hide details
Department of Applied Education, Midlands State University, ZIMBABWE
Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, SOUTH AFRICA
Online publish date: 2018-09-13
Publish date: 2018-09-13
EURASIA J. Math., Sci Tech. Ed 2018;14(12):em1621
The study investigated the comparative effects of Selvaratnam, & Fraser (1982) and Ashmore et al. (1979) problem-solving instructional strategies on Advanced Level students’ achievement in Stoichiometry. The quasi-experimental design with a non-equivalent comparison group consisting of pre-and post-test measures was utilized in the study. The participants were 525 Advanced level chemistry learners drawn from 8 high schools from Gweru district. Data were collected using standardized achievement Tests in stoichiometry. The problem-solving instruction was implemented in four experimental schools while the remaining four control schools were taught using the conventional lecture method. Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) was used to analyze data. The findings indicated a statistical significant difference in the performance of students taught using the two problem-solving strategies and those taught using the conventional method. The Scheffe’s post- hoc test indicated that students taught using the Ashmore et al. (1979) problem-solving instructional strategy performed significantly better than those taught with the Selvaratnam & Fraser problem-solving strategy. Furthermore, it was also found that the performance of students in the experimental group was not influenced by gender. Chemistry teachers are therefore strongly recommended to use problem-solving instructional strategies in their classes to improve the abilities of learners in solving stoichiometry problems.
1. Adesoji, F. A., & Babatunde, A. G. (2008). Investigating Gender Difficulties and Misconceptions in Inorganic Chemistry at the Senior Secondary Level. International Journal of African and African American Studies, 2(1), 1-7.
2. Adesoji, F. A., Omilani, N. A., & Dada, S. O. (2017). A Comparison of Perceived and Actual; Students’ Learning Difficulties in Physical Chemistry. International Journal of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, 6(1), 1-8.
3. Adigwe, J. C. (1998). Three problem-solving instructional strategies and their effect on Nigerian student’s attainment in chemistry. Research in Education, 60, 54 – 67.
4. Agogo, P. O., & Onda, M. O. (2014). Identification of Students Perceived Difficult Concepts in Senior Secondary School Chemistry in Oju Local Government Area of Benue State, Nigeria. Global Educational Research Journal, 2(4), 44–49.
5. Aka, E. G., Guven, E., & Aydogdu, M. (2010). Effect of Problem Solving Method on Science Process Skills and Academic Achievement. Journal of Turkish Science Education, 7(4), 13-25.
6. Akınoğlu, O., & Tandoğan, R.O. (2007). The Effects of Problem-Based Active Learning in Science Education on Students’ Academic Achievement, Attitude and Concept Learning. Eurasia Journal of Mathematics, Science & Technology Education, 3(1), 71-81.
7. Argaw, A. S., Haile, B. B., Ayalew, B. T., & Kuma, S. G. (2017). The Effect of Problem Based Learning (PBL) Instruction on Students’ Motivation and Problem Solving Skills of Physics. EURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 13(3), 857-871.
8. Arzi, H. J., & White, R. T. (2005). Longitudinal studies: Designs, validity, practicality, and value. Research in Science Education, 35(1), 137-149.
9. Ashmore, A. D., Frazer, M. J., & Casey, R. J. (1979). Problem solving and problem solving network in Chemistry. Chemistry Education, 56(6), 377-379.
10. Bledsoe, K. E., & Flick, L. (2012). Concept development and meaningful learning among electrical engineering students engaged in a problem-based laboratory experience. Journal of Science Education and Technology. 21(2), 226-245.
11. Çaliskan, S., Sezgin Selçuk, G., & Erol, M. (2010). Instruction of problem-solving strategies: Effects on physics achievement and self-efficacy beliefs. Journal of Baltic Science Education, 9(1), 20-34.
12. Childs P. E., & Sheehan M. (2009). What’s difficult about Chemistry? An Irish perspective, Chemistry Education Research and Practice, 10, 204-218.
13. Ding, N., & Xu, Y. (2011) Improving Female Students’ Physics Learning in High School. In: M. M. H. Cheng, W. W. M. So (Eds) Science Education in International Contexts. Sense Publishers, Netherlands.
14. Donnelly, R., MacPhee, C., & Bates, S. (2012). The performance gender gap in undergraduate physics. Proceedings of the HEA STEM Learning and Teaching Conference. London, England.
15. Fatade, A. O., Mogari, D., & Arigbabu, A. A. (2013). Effect of Problem-Based Learning on Senior Secondary School Students’ Achievements in Further Mathematics. Acta Didactica Naponcensia, 6(3), 27 – 44.
16. Gok, T. (2014). Peer Instruction in the Physics Classroom: Effects on Gender Difference Performance, Conceptual Learning, and Problem Solving. Journal of Baltic Science Education, 13(6), 776-788.
17. Gongden, E. J. (2016). The Effects of Analogy on Male and Female Chemistry Students’. Problem-Solving Ability in Electrolysis. International Journal of Scientific Research in Education, 9(1), 1-6.
18. Hung, Y.-C. (2008). The Effect of Problem-Solving Instruction on Computer Engineering Majors’ Performance in Verilog Programming. IEEE Transactions on Education, 51(1), 131-137.
19. Johnson, B., & Christenson, L. (2012). Quantitative, qualitative, and mixed approaches. (4th edn.). University of South Alabama: SAGE Publications, Inc.
20. Kamisah, O., & Nur, S. (2013). Conceptual understanding in secondary school chemistry: A discussion of the difficulties Experienced by students. American Journal of Applied Sciences, 10(5), 433-441.
21. Kazembe, T. C., & Musarandega, A. (2012). Student Performance in A-level Chemistry Examinations in Makoni District, Zimbabwe. Eurasian Journal of Physics and Chemistry Education, 4(1), 2-29.
22. Kim, H. Y. (2015). Statistical notes for clinical researchers: post-hoc multiple comparisons. Restorative Dentistry & Endodontics, 40(2), 172–176.
23. Madsen, A., McKagan, S. B., & Sayre, E. C. (2013). Gender gap on concept inventories in physics: What is consistent, what is inconsistent, and what factors influence the gap? Physical Review Special Topics-Physics Education Research, 9(020121), 1-15.
24. McMillan, J., & Schumacher, S. (2010). Research in Education. Evidence base Inquiry (7th Ed.), International Edition Boston: Pearson Education Inc.
25. Molnar, J., & Molnar-Hamvas, L. (2011). LEGO-Method⎯New Strategy for Chemistry Calculation. US-China Education Review, B 7, 891-908.
26. Naah, B. M., & Sanger, M. J. (2012). Student misconceptions in writing balanced equations for dissolving ionic compounds in water. Chemistry Education Research Practice, 13, 186–194.
27. Nbina, J. B., & Joseph, O. B. (2011). Assessment of the Effects of Problem-solving Instructional Strategies on Students’ Achievement and Retention in Chemistry with Respect to Location in Rivers State. World Journal of Education, 1(2), 74 – 79.
28. Noh, T., Jeon, K., & Huffman, D. (2005). The Effects of Thinking Aloud Pair Problem Solving on High School Students’ Chemistry Problem-Solving Performance and Verbal Interactions. Journal of Chemical Education, 82(10), 1558-1564.
29. Okafor, N. P. (2000). Laboratory resources and utilization as correlates of chemistry students’ learning outcomes. Proceedings of the 41st Conference of the Science Teachers’ Association of Nigeria, 169-173.
30. Richardson, C. T., & O’Shea, B. W. (2013). Assessing gender differences in response system questions for an introductory physics course. American Journal of Physics, 81(3), 231-236.
31. Sedumedi, T. D. T. (2014). The Use of Productive Inquiry in the Teaching of Problem Solving in Chemical Stoichiometry. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences. 5(20), 1346–1359.
32. Selvaratnam, M., & Frazer, M. J. (1982). Problem Solving in Chemistry. London: Heinemann Educational Publishers.
33. Seyhan, G. H. (2015). The effects of problem solving applications on the development of science process skills, logical thinking skills and perception on problem solving ability in the science laboratory. Asia-Pacific Forum on Science Learning and Teaching, 16(2), 1-31.
34. Tan, K. C. D., Treagust, D. F., Chandrasegaran, A. L., & Mocerino, M. (2010). Kinetics of acid reactions: making sense of associated concepts. Chemistry Education Research and Practice, 11, 267–280.
35. Udo, M. E. (2011). Effects of Problem-Solving, Guided-Discovery and Expository Teaching Strategies on Students’ Performance in Redox Reactions African Research Review: An International Multidisciplinary Journal, Ethiopia, 5(4) 231–241.
36. Yıldırım, N., Kurt, S., & Ayas, A. (2011). The Effect of the Worksheets on Students’ Achievement in Chemical Equilibrium. Journal of Turkish Science Education, 8(3), 44–58. Retrieved from
37. Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (2012). Chief examiner’s report. Harare: ZIMSEC.
38. Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (2013). Chief examiner’s report. Harare: ZIMSEC.
39. Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (2014). Chief examiner’s report. Harare: ZIMSEC.
40. Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (2015). Chief examiner’s report. Harare: ZIMSEC.
41. Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (2016). Chief examiner’s report. Harare: ZIMSEC.
42. Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (2017). Chief examiner’s report. Harare: ZIMSEC.