World Journal of Chemical Education
ISSN (Print): 2375-1665 ISSN (Online): 2375-1657 Website: Editor-in-chief: Prof. V. Jagannadham
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World Journal of Chemical Education. 2016, 4(4), 73-75
DOI: 10.12691/wjce-4-4-1
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Petroleum Chemistry in Organic Chemistry Textbooks and its Possible Connection to Public Knowledge

Michele M. Sanner1, Julian A. Neagu1 and Steven C. Farmer1,

1Department of Chemistry, Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park, California, United States

Pub. Date: July 04, 2016

Cite this paper:
Michele M. Sanner, Julian A. Neagu and Steven C. Farmer. Petroleum Chemistry in Organic Chemistry Textbooks and its Possible Connection to Public Knowledge. World Journal of Chemical Education. 2016; 4(4):73-75. doi: 10.12691/wjce-4-4-1


Organic chemistry textbooks are constantly growing due to the need to include modern material. However, the amount of content is limited by their physical size, which brings up concerns that old, very important, topics will be excluded to make room. To point out this ominous trend, we have tracked the coverage of the topics, petroleum and petroleum chemistry, in organic chemistry textbooks from 1856 to the present day. We have uncovered the troubling trend that, starting in 1970, the coverage of these topics has steadily diminished. Also, through polls we have shown that the general public has very little knowledge of how petroleum shows up in their lives. We imply that there is a connection.

organic chemistry textbooks public knowledge petroleum pedagogy

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