Chemistry as a Creative Science


How do we teach chemistry as a different science from physics? This paper looks into a fundamental distinguishing property of chemistry as a science. It is characterized in this paper that chemistry, unlike many other sciences that are largely descriptive, is primarily creative. In this sense, the various fields of chemistry may seek to create as an end goal, and not merely to create as a means to an end as commonly seen in allied sciences. This distinction is important as it elevates the importance of chemical synthesis above being a small detail of the field. I argue in this paper that synthesis is a largely defining character of chemistry as a structured science, and must be given importance to when attempting to define chemistry as a separate study from similar fields. Awareness of the importance of synthesis can elucidate on the manner and trends of normal chemical research as well as predict possible circumstances that will arise for the field of chemistry.

In Foundations of Chemistry
Le Dolino
Le Dolino
Co-Chair of the AI, Digital Learning & Digital Transformation Working Group, UNESCO SDG4 Youth & Student Network

My research interests include the history, philosophy, and social studies of science education, and actual science education practice.