Omani twelfth grade students’ most common misconceptions in chemistry

Sulaiman Al-Balushi, Abdulla Ambusaidi, Ali Al-Shuaili, Neil Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The current study, undertaken in the Sultanate of Oman, explored twelfth
grade students’ common misconceptions in seven chemistry conceptual
areas. The sample included 786 twelfth grade students in Oman while the
instrument was a two-tier test called Chemistry Misconceptions Diagnostic
Test (CMDT), consisting of 25 items with 12 items incorporating visual
representations and eight items used sub-microscopic representations. In
addition, nine items required participants to study the visual diagram(s) in
order to answer the questions. The results confirmed several misconceptions
that had been identified in previous studies, as higher percentages of the
misconceptions were recorded compared to the findings of previous studies.
Misconceptions receiving the highest percentages were associated with
combustion, chemical equilibrium, and electrochemistry. The results also
indicated that twelfth graders had a difficulty dealing with visual test items.
These findings are serious alerts to the practice of chemistry education at
the secondary level in Oman. Recommendations are given to improve the
teaching of chemistry by taking research-diagnosed misconceptions into
account when designing instructional materials and classroom activities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)221-240
Number of pages20
JournalScience Education International
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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