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  • Science Teachers Association of Victoria Inc.VCE Conference Series 2016

    Postal Address: PO Box 109 Coburg VIC 3058

    Phone: (03) 9385 3999 Fax: (03) 9386 6722Email: Website:

    Monday 29 February 2016 at La Trobe University, Bundoora

    The VCE Chemistry Teachers Conference is an approved professional learning activity.

    VCE Chemistry Teachers Conference 2016

    Conference Program8:00am Registration opens

    8:40am - 8:45am Welcome - Soula Bennett, STAV and Lanna Derry, CEA

    8:45am - 9:45am Keynote Speaker 1 Associate Professor Spencer J Williams, School of Chemistry and Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute, University of Melbourne Understanding and exploiting carbohydrate-processing enzymes: Explorations in glycobiology

    9:45am - 10:15am Morning Tea/Displays

    10:15am - 11:15am Keynote Speaker 2 Professor Andrea Robinson, School of Chemistry, Monash University Making molecules the dream job!

    11:20am - 12:10pm Workshop - Session A

    12:15pm - 1:00pm Lunch/Displays

    1:05pm - 1:55pm Workshop - Session B

    2:00pm - 2:55pm VCAA 2016 Update - Maria James, VCAA

    3:00pm - 3:50pm Workshop - Session C

    3:55pm - 4:40pm Wine and Cheese sponsored by CEA

    Registration information, La Trobe University map and all conference information is available on the Science Victoria website:

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    VCE Chemistry Teachers Conference 2016

    While it is well-appreciated that complex carbohydrates are useful energy reserve materials, it is perhaps less well known that they play intimate roles in human health and disease such as protein folding and quality control, immune responses, and the tailoring of the composition of the microbiota. The search for understanding of the roles of carbohydrates in biology is the goal of the field of glycobiology. As carbohydrate structures are not directly encoded by the genome, but are instead types of primary and secondary metabolites, modern molecular biology techniques are unsuited to explore the reaches of the glycobiology universe. Instead, collaborations of chemists, biochemists, structural and cellular biologists are required to chart these new and undiscovered territories. I will provide an overview of three projects in which new insights into the sample areas listed above have been achieved, and in which synthetic organic chemistry has played a key enabling role allowing access to bespoke mechanistic probes and rare natural products.

    Spencer Williams is Associate Director of the Bio21 Institute Chemical Biology and Biotechnology Theme and an Australian Research Council Future Fellow. After obtaining his PhD in Organic Chemistry at the University of Western Australia he undertook postdoctoral positions at the University of British Columbia (Canada) and UC Berkelely (USA). He returned to Australia in 2002 to start at research program at the University of Melbourne. Career highlights include the development of two drugs in advanced clinical trials, not notably FT011 for diabetic nephropathy, which was acquired by Shire Plc in 2014 for an upfront payment of US$75 million. He has published over 100 papers and the work of his laboratory has been recognized by awards including the David Syme Prize (2014) and the Rennie Memorial Medal (2008)

    Morning Tea / Displays 9:45am-10:15am

    Keynote 18:45am 9:45am

    Understanding and exploiting carbohydrate-processing enzymes:

    Explorations in glycobiologyAssociate Professor Spencer J Williams

    School of Chemistry and Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute

    University of Melbourne

    Catalyst based manufacturing accounts for ~60% of chemical production and 90% of processes. It provides a highly efficient way to generate key structural elements found in biologically active molecules, namely chirality and heterocyclic framework. This talk highlights new applications of catalysis for the synthesis of carbocyclic peptides, heterocycles, and polymeric materials with a strong focus on the area of olefin metathesis. Newer catalysts are now available to construct C-C bonds that have high functional group tolerance and operate under very mild experimental conditions. This opens the door to take on very challenging, large, biologically active molecules and polymers. Although the research areas of diabetes, analgesia, polyamide synthesis and marine alkaloids may seem diverse, this talk will highlight how deep understanding of a catalysis mechanism and a creative team spirit can combine to generate exciting results to benefit mankind. Our research has recently been examining how insulin engages with its receptor, how conotoxins isolated from marine conesnails prevent nerve transmission, how nylon monomers can be generated from renewable seed oil, and how complex molecular frameworks can be generated in just a few steps. All through catalysis.

    Andrea Robinson received a PhD from Monash University before engaging in pharmaceutical research at the DuPont Merck Pharmaceutical Company in Delaware, USA. She then returned to Monash to take up an academic position in the School of Chemistry. She currently juggles the roles of the Associate Dean Research in the Faculty of Science, teaching and research. Her research has a strong focus on synthetic organic chemistry exploring the use of catalysts for new applications (from

    Keynote 210:15am 11:15am

    Making molecules the dream job!Professor Andrea Robinson

    School of ChemistryMonash University

    small molecule natural products through to large biopolymers) and improving efficiency. Her research projects currently examine the synthesis of new insulins, analgesics for chronic pain, polymers that can sense change in temperature for wound dressings, marine natural products from ascidians and the generation of industrial monomers from renewable sources.

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    Monday 29 February 2016

    Session A 11:20am-12:10pm

    A1 STEM and Model Rockets-made science compelling Peter Razos, Trinity Grammar School Make science compelling. Teach science through the use of hands-on activities such as model rocketry. Participants will be encouraged to build and launch their own model rocket. We will cover themes such as energy conversion and forces through this dynamic activity. Let us show you how we, at Trinity, ignite the imagination of students through this activity and generate interest in science clubs and parent science evenings where parent and child interact to build a rocket that culminates in an exciting launch. Curriculum: All

    A2 Creative Teaching and Assessment in Year 11 VCE ChemistryColleen Clift & Miriam Beasy, Methodist Ladies CollegeWould you like to move away from always lecturing your students then loading them up with questions from the text? Would you like your students to think more critically? Would you like to help them link concepts from different areas of their Chemistry course? In this session a selection of teaching and assessment strategies used in Year 11 VCE Chemistry will be shared. Delegates note - this is a repeat of the session Colleen presented at the VCE Chemistry in February 2015 so this may not be suitable for those who attended that session.Curriculum: VCE Units 1 & 2 Repeated in B12

    A3 Stereoisomers: Chirality and geometric isomers Assoc. Prof Brendan Abrahams & Professor Jonathan White, School of Chemistry-Bio 21 Institute, University of Melbourne The participants in this workshop will learn the concepts of chirality and cis and trans isomerism about C=C double bonds in organic compounds. This is a new area in the 2017 Year 12 VCAA Study Design. The interactive nature of this workshop will allow teachers to see how they might provide this information to their students in a hands-on/practical way. Curriculum: Year 12

    A4 How to teach NMR at Yr.12Marino Dereani, Eutectic Educational & Stephanie Kralik This session is geared towards new teachers of Yr.12 Chemistry or current teachers who wish to increase their understanding of the theory of NMR. Admittedly, the nature of the topic can be confusing and for some, a daunting task to teach it let alone understand it. It is not a topic to be glossed over. During the session the discussion will focus on using an effective technique which could and perhaps should meet the educational outcomes in this area of the course. The discussion will also include the association between the alkyl component of the organic molecule and the use of NMR spectroscopy.Curriculum: VCE Unit 3Repeated in B13

    A5 Preparing Students for Area of Study 3Adele Hudson, Aitken College The introduction of Area of Study 3 in the new study design inherently presents teachers with numerous opportunities and challenges. While there is now greater opportunity for students to engage in self designed inquiry tasks, there is the challenge of preparing students for the rigours of this task within the limited timeframe of Units 1 & 2 and Units 3 & 4. This session will discuss how key skills can be progressively introduced in the years preceding and during VCE. Specific examples from Year 7 to 12 will be given, along with a discussion on how assessment based on developmental progressions can provide students with evidence based feedback that is consistent across all year levels and all sciences.Curriculum: All

    A6 Science, investigation and hypothesesKieran Lim, Deakin University Science and chemistry are much more than the scientific method, which is used to describe scientific discovery. Chemistry also involves measurement, synthesis and separation among other things. Real-world chemistry includes quality assurance and quality control, manufacture of polymers and pharmaceuticals, and extraction of natural products yet these do not involve the scientific method. Investigations are at the heart of the testable and contestable nature of science; hypotheses that are not associated with the scientific method will be discussed. Kieran Lim has taught chemistry for about 30 years and is the recipient of an Australian Commonwealth Government Award for Teaching Excellence. Curriculum: All

    A7 Uses and Abuses of Standard Half Cell PotentialsPeter Marks, Retired Teacher By the end of VCE Unit 4, teachers should be able to get good answers from their students to the question, What can you use Standard Half Cell Potentials for? We can also ask, What cant you use Standard Half Cell Potentials for and why not? This session seeks to help teachers clarify the answers to these questions. The session is designed for teachers relatively new to VCE, but all are welcome. Curriculum: VCE Units 2 & 4

    A8 Unit 2 AOS3 Practical Investigation - towards the poster task for Unit 3 & 4 Chem Louise Lennard, University High School Ideas for water analysis for AOS3, Unit 2 Chemistry will be presented. The session will include how to write a practical report and scientific poster. Delegates note - Louise Lennard is Head of Science at University High School. She teaches VCE Chemistry and VCE Extended Investigation. Curriculum: VCE Units 2, 3 & 4

    A9 Resourcing a new course Pat OShea, Loreto College Ballarat This session will cover some ideas for experiments and assessment tasks for Units 1 to 4 of new study design.Curriculum: VCE Units 1, 2, 3 & 4

    A10 Research Investigation and Scientific Poster for ChemistryDr Kerwyn Alley, Nossal High School This session will provide strategies on how to guide students to enhance the research and communication skills they require for this type of task. A focus will be on how to develop a research question, conduct their research and critically analyse the findings. Ways to best construct and present the research by a scientific poster will be also discussed. Delegate please bring your own laptop.Curriculum: VCE Units 1, 2, 3 & 4Repeated in B8

    A11 Teaching Unit 3 & 4 ChemistryDrew Chan, Methodist Ladies College & Stephanie Keppel, Alkira Secondary College This session will focus on how you might like to teach Units 3&4 Chemistry in 2016 (old study design). Come along for some useful information on how to set out the year for you and your students. We will discuss how to engage your students with prac work, demonstrations and effective utilisation of ICT, and how to go about writing assessment tasks. This workshop is targeted for first time and early careers chemistry teachers. The workshop is being presented by the Early Chemistry Careers Network (ECCN), which is part of the CEA.Curriculum: VCE Units 3 & 4

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    A12 Chem Ed 2015 An International PerspectiveMelissa MacEoin, Mater Christi College In August 2015 I was fortunate to be sponsored by the CEA (Chemistry Education Association) to attend ChemEd 2015, in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. This session will share some of the highlights from this conference, including classroom ideas that I have since brought back and trialed, as well as some of the latest ideas in chemistry education research. Lesson plans and resources provided.Curriculum: All

    A13 Improving Chemistry outcomes through the use of assessment diagnosticsAlexander Young, Ingenious Technological EnterprisesI collaborated with schools in three states to develop a world first means by which teachers monitor the quality of their teaching in assessment for learning. This has enabled teachers to change their lives and that of their students, or as a speaker at the ACEL 2012 conference put it something like; The students in her school, on average, learn at twice the pace of the nation and at twice the usual depth. Teachers achieve this by using their schools photocopier as a high speed scanner providing forensic feedback on each students learning needs, thus assisting in the development of individual learning plans based on clearly identified learning needs. I will show participants how to reveal the nature of student flawed thinking when they are not having success. This methodology assists teachers to lift student outcomes in ways not previously possible. This has transformed teaching enabling huge productivity gains.Curriculum: Years 7 - 12Repeated in B3

    A14 An idea for Extended Experimental Investigations in Unit 2John Jackowski, Scotch College Melbourne At Scotch we have been using the Vitamin C content of Apple Juice for an EEI for some time. The set up of the EEI will be discussed and how to adapt it to the new study design.Curriculum: VCE Unit 2Repeated in B4

    Session B 1.05pm - 1.55pm

    B1 Unit1 AOS3 How to approach the Research Investigation TaskLouise Lennard, University High School This session will give examples of how you can guide your students with undertaking AOS3 Unit 1 Chemistry - Research Investigation. Where to obtain credible sources of information, how to summarise information and use the APA referencing style for citations and references. A sample marking rubric will also be provided for teachers. Delegates note - Louise Lennard is Head of Science at University High School. She teaches VCE Chemistry and VCE Extended Investigation.Curriculu...


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