VCE Chemistry: Organic compounds practical investigation

Subject Area: VCE Chemistry
Author: Eleanor Yorke, Jordyn Exner, Tristan O’Brien and Jett Cheney


Students are required in this task to design a scientific poster to represent and discuss the results of their investigation. Students are to select a research task from a field of study from Units 3 or 4 and design, perform and analyse the investigative experiment. The final presentation of the investigation as a poster should incorporate an aim and hypothesis, methodology, analysed data and conclusion.

Curriculum link Page 33- 35




Procedural Properties

(VCAA, 2015)

Purpose This task was designed as a summative assessment task to assess to key knowledge and key skills involved with Outcome 3 of Unit 4. The students are given the choice to undertake the investigation on a number of different topics within the curriculum. Important to note is that outcome 3 has specific requirements that are connected to the key knowledge dot points that must be reached in order to satisfy achievement of outcome 3. The assessment is relevant and appropriate as students must display the skills required from the curriculum. It entails that students show understanding of experimental investigations, appropriate chemistry knowledge and ability to present data.




Administer Students collaborate to develop resources over 4 classes 55 minutes  each. In these classes they will develop their understanding of content and create a summary sheet from their resources. Students will then work individually to create a poster over another 4 classes at 55 minutes each. Students will be able to use their resource sheet but will not be able to have assistance from peers (test conditions). Students may ask the teacher about questions on how to format the poster, but questions specific to poster content will not be answered.
Record Students are expected to record their activities and processes in their logbooks. Teachers will be able to check, authenticate and provide feedback on the students’ investigation and research by collecting the logbooks between classes during the investigation process. These logbooks will contribute to the students’ marks across the assignment, with the submitted poster being the final assessment component. The logbooks and posters should be kept for auditing purposes.
Interpret According to the school-based assessment guidelines from VCAA this task will be given a final mark out of 30. This will contribute to 8% of the students overall Unit 3&4 Chemistry grade.
Use The mark students receive for this task will be used for reporting a school-based assessment grade to VCAA. This must be combined with marks out of 30 each from Outcome 1 and Outcome 2. The assessment is adequate for determining a mark for outcome 3 of unit 4 but is inadequate for reporting on the whole of Unit 4.


Low – Students can successfully prepare components for an investigation and poster. They are able present and discuss results using few chemical concepts/terminology. This data is presented as a poster.

Medium – At this level students are able to use their area of investigation to inform an appropriately designed experiment. Students can gather data which is related to the aim of the investigation and may represent it in a graphical form. The students will analyse and discuss their results with relation to the conceptual ideas and draw links between the investigation and their chemistry understanding.

High –  At this level students are able to construct a scientifically accurate experiment relevant to to it purpose. The students collect data, this data relevantly contributes to the aim and they can present it in a graphical representation that is appropriately analysed. They complete a detailed review and discussion of concepts relevant to the curriculum. They use their evidence to form links between the investigation and their understanding of chemical concepts.

Outstanding – The experiment constructed by the students at this level will reflect their ability to use research to inform and guide a scientifically accurate investigation. This research will be implemented by students to create a synthesised report which includes evidence-based conclusions.


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