Chemistry Is in the News: Taxonomy of Authentic News Media-Based Learning Activities


A brief history is given of approaches that aim at achieving a connectedness of the content of organic chemistry courses to real world issues. Recently, such approaches have relied more and more on online media resources, the tools of the Internet and the World Wide Web. We propose a six-level taxonomy of 'authentic news media-based learning activities' to provide a conceptual framework for the description and discussion of such approaches. The Chemistry Is in the News project was designed to allow students to draw explicit connections between the course content and real world issues in ways that engage the students in a full range of cognitive skills. The activities consisted in the study, creation, and peer review of news portfolios by student collaborative groups. A news portfolio consists of an authentic news article taken from the popular press with interpretive comments and questions.




University of Missouri. Institute for Instructional Development
Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation
National Science Foundation (U.S.)


The Chemistry Is in the News Project has been made possible by grants from the MU Institute for Instructional Design, The Camille & Henry Dreyfus Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and matching funds provided by the PRIME Fund of the University of Missouri and the MU Department of Chemistry.

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

0950-0693; 1464-5289

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





© 2005 Taylor & Francis, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jul 2005