CHEMISTRY LEARNING WITH APPLICATION OF THE ZONE OF PROXIMAL DEVELOPMENT AND USE OF CONCEPTUAL MAPS IN THE CHEMISTRY LAB
The present study focuses on the deficient learning of health science students in the General Chemistry course in the first level higher education, specifically regarding the topic of aqueous dissolutions in terms of the meaning of pH and how to determine it. The causes of this problem are: i) the difficulty relating the theory to the practice, ii) the lack of strategies that help and motivate learning, iii) the inability to understand and resolve problems or exercises, and iv) a deficiency on basic mathematical aptitudes for application in resolving problems and exercises, among others. The research considered the academic results obtained by students of various careers in the area of health sciences students in the past, to subsequently determine the research group, resulting it the career of nursing students. To achieve this type of learning, the Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD) was applied, together with the metacognitive strategy of Conceptual Maps (CM) and feedback & self-correction in practical laboratory activities. This study was carried out at a university and involved nursing students because they have many difficulties learning experimental sciences, especially chemistry, because the students of other careers do not have many weaknesses in this science, being evidenced in the results at end of the semester. The sample experimental group consisted of 336 nursing students and the control group 420 students of nutrition and dietetics and dentistry taking the unit “General Chemistry”, who provided all the information for this study.