Relationships between models used for teaching chemistry and those expressed by students

Sammanfattning: This thesis is focused upon chemistry as a school subject and students' interpretations and use of formally introduced teaching models. To explore students' developing repertoire of chemical models, a longitudinal interview study was undertaken spanning the first year of upper secondary school chemistry. Matter in its different states was selected as the target framework for this study. The results presented are derived from both generalisations of groups of students as well as a case study describing an individual learner's interpretation of formal content. The results obtained demonstrated that the formal teaching models provided to the students included in this study were not sufficient to afford them a coherent framework of matter in its different states or for chemical bonding. Instead, students' expressed models of matter and phase change were to a high degree dependent on electron movement (Paper I), anthropomorphism (Paper II) and, for one student, a mechanistic approach based on small particles and gravitation (Paper III). The results from this study place focus on the importance of learners' prior learning (previous experiences) and the need to develop a coherent framework of formal teaching models for the nature of matter and phase change.