Lifelong Learning Programme

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This material reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein

Also available in:


Teaching Resources

Homepage > Teaching Resources > Teaching Resources Form


MERLOT Chemistry Portal
various authors
Web Site/Portal
Medium, Advanced
Cooperative learning, Problem solving, Modelling, Experiential learning
Fundamental Chemistry, Life Chemistry, Materials Science, Health Science, Industrial Chemistry, Environmental Chemistry
Upper Secondary School
MERLOT Chemistry is a community of people involved in teaching Chemistry and involved in education, in general. . Members can add teaching-learning materials, add comments and assignments for learning materials as well as interacting with other members. Membership is free.
MERLOT Chemistry Portal is an educational resource for teaching and learning. The “Teaching” part uses a number of techniques to engage students in the Chemistry classroom. MERLOT modules can assist students in learning with a variety of techniques, e.g. interactive tutorials, animations, simulations, quizzes, lecture presentations and learning assignments. However, there are only available samples of each kind of module. The topics are wide from general principles (e.g. ideal gas law simulation) to complex problems. Considerable part is dedicated to biochemistry of metabolism. It contains instructional materials for a studio-format course regarding individual features of metabolism. Three chapters of cellular biochemistry and a review on protein structure are also available. This biochemical part is complex and suitable more likely for university students, nevertheless several parts can be used at some upper secondary schools as well. Some of the modules require installing of players and plugins that may not be commonly embedded in users` computers. Wrong sources are linked for the user to install the missing ones.
Another part of the portal ( contains links to variety of learning materials created and posted by authors and members of MERLOT. The user can browse them or search particular topic by type or by subdiscipline. Learning materials are evaluated in a peer review process similar to review processes of many scholarly journals.
The modules and learning materials can support teaching in classes of secondary schools provided suitable level of teaching material is chosen. Some of the materials (e.g. simulations) are more suitable for students` homework. For instance, at reaction simulations, a student can work in a virtual laboratory with no danger of accident. He/she can vary the conditions (amount of reactants, temperature, pressure etc.) and observe what happen.
The portal comprises different educational modules, from basic principles to complex biochemical phenomena. The pictures and animations are well arranged. The texts are scientifically reliable. However, just several examples of the modules are presented on the portal. Moreover, some of them do not work properly or at all. More modules are intended for any other project. Nevertheless, there are also reported links to many other educational tools which can be used at chemistry classes or at self-studying at home. Some of them are challenging and suitable more likely for university students, some of them are suitable for high school pupils as well. All materials are in English only, which is a disadvantage for national teachers who can hardly translate the materials because they cannot edit the animations and simulations. However the materials can be utilized not only in the Czech Republic provided they are well translated to particular national languages.
Institute of Chemical Technology Prague

Comments about this Publication

Your comments are welcome

Date: 2014.03.16

Posted by Carla Morais (Portugal)

Message: The existence of a vast number of resources available on the web is a tremendous asset, as it forms the basis for the emergence of \"collective intelligence\" (Lévy, 1998). In fact, repositories resulted from the need to systematize the proliferation of Digital educational resources (DER) from all regions of the globe and from various communities and cultures. Constitute themselves as online systems that are intended to save, deliver and disseminate the intellectual output of a community, available in digital format, a digital space where data and information is stored and updated (Højsholt & EdReNe , 2008) .

Despite some barriers that limit access and use of repositories, there are several possibilities of a education repository such as MERLOT (OECD, 2007):
- Induce and streamline the production and use of tools, content, resources and information in digital / electronic form.
- Encourage more interactive and constructivist teaching practices.
- Promoting the use of DER in addition to teaching in the classroom and beyond.
- Foster the inclusion in the teaching and learning of people with special needs.
- Develop and strengthen a culture of lifelong learning.
- Minimizing the digital divide, enabling remote and low-cost access to content, the modules and courses.

In my opinion the MERLOT Chemistry Portal can help the students to understand chemistry better and faster because they can use interactive tutorials, animations, simulations, quizzes, lecture presentations and learning assignments, promoting students-centered learning and autonomous learning. For teachers, it is a good way for chose different resource in order to use it in their classes.

National Reports on successful experiences to promote lifelong learning for chemistry The national reports on chemistry successful experiences to promote lifelong learning for chemistry are now available on the related section of the project portal. The reports presents examples of successful experiences in the partner countries and the results of testing of ICT resources with science teachers.