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A Laboratory-Intensive Format for Instrumental Analysis Paul A. Flowers Department of Physical Science.

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Presentation on theme: "A Laboratory-Intensive Format for Instrumental Analysis Paul A. Flowers Department of Physical Science."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Laboratory-Intensive Format for Instrumental Analysis Paul A. Flowers Department of Physical Science

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3 The University of North Carolina

4 UNC Pembroke predominantly undergraduate enrollment ca ca. 25% Native American The Department four fttt chemistry faculty (3 physicists) ca majors (average 10 grads/yr) ca. 50% Native American

5 Postgraduation Activity of Majors

6 Curricular Context CHM 327 “Analytical Chemistry II” (aka, “Instrumental Analysis”) required for all tracks of the B.S. in Chemistry enrollment is typically mostly juniors few nonmajors (e.g., BIO)

7 The Traditional Format 3 hours lecture, 3 hours lab weekly assignments include several tests, final exam, written lab reports on ca. 7-8 projects occasionally require oral presentation on a topic or literature article

8 “Educators traditionally are not job- oriented…Place more emphasis on experimental work and on problem solving.” J.G. Grasselli, Anal. Chem (2)182A-192A Survey of B.S. Chemist Employers: Report writing, data analysis, experimental technique, and problem solving suggested as areas most in need of attention from Harwood, J.J., J. Chem. Educ (11) A268-A271 “Teaching problem-solving concepts and skills is the single most important thing the universities can do to enhance their students’ careers.” T.M. Thorpe and A.H. Ullman, Anal. Chem A-480A

9 The Lab-Intensive Format 6 hours lab weekly (two 3 h meetings) 7 “traditional” lab projects completed by midterm; individual projects (research-like) conducted during second half of term “traditional” lecture requirements replaced by a take-home problem set provided at the beginning of term and due at the end other assignments include written lab reports on 7 core projects, written and oral reports on independent project see for course materials

10 Core Lab Projects Construction and Characterization of RC Filter Circuits (breadboarding, multimeter, oscilloscope, graphical data analysis) Atomic Absorption Spectrometric Determination of Lead (optical alignment, solution prep’n, aux. readout devices, graphical data analysis) Kinetics of Phenolpthalein Hydroxylation with a Diode Array Spectrometer (computer-assisted data acquisition and analysis, solution prep’n) Quantitative FTIR of Aqueous Solutions (ATR sampling, computer-assisted data acquisition and analysis, solution prep’n) Cyclic Voltammetry of the Ferri/ferrocyanide Couple (computer-assisted data acquisition and analysis, solution prep’n) Efficiency and Resolution in Capillary Gas Chromatography (parameter optimization, aux. readout devices, graphical data analysis) Suppressed Conductivity Detection in Ion Chromatography (parameter optimization, aux. readout devices, graphical data analysis)

11 Examples of Individual Laboratory Projects beginning with a 2-3 sentence description of the project goal, students seek and/or develop appropriate experimental protocols faculty/student conferences, printed and electronic literature serve to guide experimental work culminates in formal written report and oral presentation at end-of- semester student symposium Headspace GC Investigation of Pharmaceutical Degradation Voltammetric Evaluation of Enzyme Strip Electrodes for Blood Glucose Measurements Direct Photometric Measurement of Sunscreen SPF Indicator-Imbedded Nafion Films for Photometric pH Measurements

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14 Summary Impressions unquestionably better in development of lab skills questionably “better” in practice with problem- solving at least as effective in enhancing oral/written communication skills perhaps less effective in teaching theory/concepts always exhausting, often exhilarating sessions for the prof


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