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Submission and Review Process

Stages of the ACELL Submission ProcessThe stages involved in the evaluation and acceptance of an experiment into the ACELL database are as follows:

The original submission should include all notes necessary for the experiment to be run in a third party laboratory.  At a minimum, this must include:

  • Student Notes for the experiment
  • Technical Notes for support staff to set up the experiment
  • A Hazard / Risk Assessment for the experiment
  • Anything else (such as results pro formas) that those carrying out the experiment wil require

Demonstrator Notes will be required for the final submission, but these are not mandatory at this stage, as the submitter will typically act as demonstrator during the third party testing.

The original submission also includes sections 1 and 2 of the ACELL Educational Template - a guide to completing the template, plus a blank template, are available below.

Third party testing and evaluation has typically been at a workshop organised by the project, but there is no requirement that it be done in that way, providing that the testing is done by both staff and students, and feedback is collected.  This feedback should cover both the experiment and its educational analysis - the surveys used for this purpose at the February 2006 workshop are available below.

Following third party testing, the submitter has the opportunity to modify the experiment prior to the collection of data on the students' experience when the experiment is run during normal classes in semester.  This data collection is supervised by the ACELL team (in order to comply with the ethics approval granted to the project), and is done either electronically or with a paper survey.  In either case, the items on the survey used are available below.

Once this feedback has been collected, the submnitter can complete section 3 of the template, dealing with student and workshop evaluation of the experiment.  In essence, this section provides the evidence of the effectiveness of the experiment as a learning experience.  This discussion should be based on the data collected, and grounded (where appropriate) in the science education literature.  In order to assist with this process, the Education Information part of this site includes a guide to the analysis of qualitative data, and discusses some important educational issues.

The complete submission includes the Educational Template, all mandatory related documents (student, demonstrator, and technical notes, plus a hazard / risk assessment), and anything else needed to support the implementation of the experiment at another institution.  This is then peer reviewed by both staff and students (the students will have attended a workshop, at which there will have been discussion of the refereeing process), prior to acceptance to the database.

The ACELL team have an arrangement for the publication of the analysis of the experiment with the Australian Journal of Education in Chemistry.  Any submission which completes the ACELL review process is accepted for publication in that journal automatically.  Submitters have the option to submit the analysis to another journal should they wish, or to include data in other articles, provided that ACELL is acknowledged - for more advice on options for publication, please contact the Associate Director.

Ethics Approval

In order to simplify the collection of data from the methods used under the APCELL project, the ACELL management team sought and have received ethics approval for all data collection associate with the project from the Human Research Ethics Committee of the University of Sydney, approval number 12-2005/2/8807.  As a consequence, submitters need not apply for independent ethics approval for their submissions, provided all data collection is supervised by the ACELL team, and that approved procedures are followed.

Related files:

  1. ACELL Educational Template,v1

    This is the blank Educational Template that was used by delegates for the February 2006 Workshop.

    Download Public Document (Word Document, 149KB)

  2. Guidelines for ACELL Educational Template

    This is the guidelines document that was provided to delegates preparing for the ACELL workshop in February 2006. It offers instructions on how to complete the template.

    Download Public Document (Acrobat PDF, 79KB)

  3. In-Semester Survey

    Following third party laboratory evaluation of an experiment,the submitter(s) have the opportunity to modify it based on its evaluation.  Feedback is then 'collected from students at the submitting institution when experiment is run during normal classes using this instrument.

    Download Other Document (Acrobat PDF, 74KB)

  4. Workshop Survey A

    This is the survey used at ASELL Workshops to collect delegates' views on each submitted experiment.

    Download Other Document (Acrobat PDF, 88KB)

  5. Workshop Survey B

    This is the survey used at ASELL Workshops to collect delegates' views on the educational analysis within section 2 of the educational template - this section deals with the 'learning objectives of the experiment,the processes by which these objectives are achieved,and the indicators for both students and staff as to whether the outcomes have been achieved.

    Download Other Document (Acrobat PDF, 49KB)