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Drivers of Chemical Reactions

This online course guides you through the NSW Chemistry Stage 6 syllabus module, Drivers of Reactions. Upskill your content knowledge, gain professional development and grow your network through formative assessment, discussion boards, case studies, videos and demonstrations.

About this course

This online course is suitable for chemistry teachers or those aspiring to become chemistry teachers. It is particularly targeted to the NSW syllabus which is mapped to the Australian Curriculum.

The aim of the course is to upskill teachers beyond the requirements of their students. This will give teachers the confidence to address the needs of their students, see connections between topics and address the needs of those students more capable. 

During this course we will conduct investigations to measure heat energy changes in the classroom and research laboratory, use experimental data to calculate enthalpy changes and demonstrate Hess’ Law. In addition, we will examine and clarify the relationship between enthalpy and entropy in calculating Gibbs free energy. Applications of the chemistry principles to industry and current research practices will also be provided throughout the course.

Course structure

The role of enthalpy and entropy in the spontaneity of reactions and the relationship between the two state functions are essential to understanding chemical reactions.

This course goes beyond the requisite content knowledge of the NSW HSC Chemistry syllabus so chemistry teachers can confidently deliver module four to students.

This course will cover the following content:

Module 1: Energy changes in chemical reactions

  • Endothermic and exothermic reactions
  • Calorimetry
  • Enthalpy changes
  • Energy profile diagrams
  • Role of catalysts.

Module 2: Enthalpy and Hess’s law

  • Bond enthalpy
  • Hess’s law
  • Application of Hess’s law.

Module 3: Entropy and Gibbs free energy

  • Entropy vs enthalpy
  • Entropy changes
  • Predicting entropy changes
  • Reaction spontaneity
  • Gibbs free energy formula
  • Temperature and reaction spontaneity.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand and apply key chemistry principles
  • Apply quantitative skills to solve chemistry problems
  • Examine practical investigation demonstrations and explain observations
  • Express chemistry concepts in a clear manner for a range of audiences through a variety of written and verbal forms.

Enrolment conditions

COVID-19 response 

Who is this course for?

This course is suitable for, but not limited to:

  • Current chemistry teachers
  • Aspiring chemistry teachers.




Start anytime




Self paced

Meet the Expert

Morgan Philp

Morgan Philp
Scholarly Teaching Fellow

Morgan is a Scholarly Teaching Fellow within the School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences at UTS. This position sees her coordinate and teach into a number of first and further year chemistry subjects, including Chemistry 1, Chemistry Bridging Course, Skills for the Professional Chemist and Environmental Chemistry.

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Self paced
Expert: Morgan Philp
  • Online
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