Title: e-Quiz for promoting chemical education
Chairmen: K.V. Sane
and Govind Hari Singhania
Members: S.C. Agarkar,
Ved Goel, V.
Natarajan, and Raj Kumar
Completion Date: 2006 - project completed
Conducting a quality Quiz is an effective way of canalizing student
interest in chemistry beyond the confines of syllabi. This expectation
has been borne out through an exploratory exercise held during 2003-2004
in which nearly 5000 students participated from over 40 schools in Delhi,
Mumbai, Kanpur and Kota (near Jaipur).
Background - A Chemistry Quiz titled RASAYANIKA ("Chemistry'
is called 'Rasayan' in Sanskrit) was conducted in Delhi in 2003 under
the auspices of the JK Foundation for Human Development (JKFGD) - a
part of the JK Organization which is one of the most prestigious Industrial
Houses in India. The Indian Quiz is an adaptation of the pioneering
work carried out by Dr. Charles Fogliani under the auspices of the Royal
Australian Chemical Institute. (The Australian National Chemistry Quiz
is being conducted by Dr. Fogliani in the Australasian region since
RASAYANIKA is designed to improve the awareness of the role that Chemistry
plays in everyday life in a developing country like India. The highly
enthusiastic response from students and teachers in 2003 led to the
idea of conducting the Quiz outside Delhi in 2004.
It is now felt that it will be useful to go on-line to reach a wider
audience and to professionalize the assessment tools and techniques
so that RASAYANIKA becomes a catalyst for improving student interest
in Chemistry. To enable the participation of schools where Chemistry
is not taught in English, the on-line version will also be accessible
in local languages where necessary.
Proposal - The objective is to design the on-line version of
the exploratory trials conducted in 2003 and 2004. This will enable
students to take part from all over India in 2005-06 and pave the way
for a regional extension of the Quiz. The academic part will consolidate
- Design and development of a Question Bank. This collection will
be classified according to categories. Each question will carry the
objective i.e. specify whether the question tests the conceptual ability,
application ability, numerical ability and so on.
- Performance of participants will be analyzed for each item (i.e.
each question) in the Quiz on a five-point scale. The analysis will
be made available to all the schools with comments and suggestions
for a follow-up. It is hoped that this step will motivate many schools
to begin a capacity building program in chemical education.
- The analysis will be used to validate the items in the Question
Bank. This will permit labeling of questions in the Bank by the so-called
Discrimination Index which indicates the efficacy of an item for assessing
the student performance.
- To attract large student turn-out, RASAYANIKA 2005 will be held
under IUPAC CCE banner and all Quiz Certificates will be signed by
IUPAC President, CCE Chairman and Chairman of the IUPAC Sub-committee
Chemistry for Development.
- To facilitate the participation of students from non-English medium
schools, the Quiz will also be conducted in local language. (It must
be mentioned that India shares some languages with some of its neighbors;
extension of the geographical scope of the Indian Quiz should therefore
foster regional cooperation in Chemical Education.)
To summarize, the Task Group envisages the e-Quiz as a catalyst for
enhancing student appreciation of Chemical Science as a creative and
a dynamic agent. It proposes to achieve this objective by establishing
a platform for bringing together specialists (for creating the Question
Bank and for validating the items in the Bank), school teachers (for
providing feedback), industry and government agencies (for instituting
prestigious Awards) and University teachers (for initiating capacity
building programs for schools/teachers). Though India is the focus of
the proposal, it should be obvious that the follow-up will be border-less
when an on-line facility is created.
The first round of Quiz competition was held in late May 2006 and the
evaluation completed early June. The student response is quite satisfying
performance-wise as well as number-wise.
Last update: 4 August 2006
<project announcement published in
2006, p. 22 >
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