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How to Use This Site



This site contains materials to actively engage students in the process of learning analytical chemistry. The site also contains textual materials to support instruction in analytical chemistry.

Use of materials

All items on the active learning site are licensed under the creative commons CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0 license. This means the materials are free for you to download and use in a way that is most suited to your course. The materials are provided in Word and/or Pdf formats so most can be easily modified. If you have questions for the author, you can reach out to them by email. Also, all the participants in this project are listed in the workshop page of this site. A great way to improve teaching is to try some new methods and discuss the outcome with other instructors who are using active learning methods in their courses.

Content Area Descriptions

Classroom Activities

These activities address the major content areas in analytical chemistry such as equilibrium, spectroscopy, separations, and mass spectrometry. The modules contain sets of questions that are intended to be answered by students in small groups during class sessions. The questions provide guiding text and are often scaffolded so students gradually build the skills needed to solve more complex problems. The instructor plays an important role in facilitating these exercises and should circulate around the room and interact with the students as they discuss answers to the questions. After 1-3 questions are answered, the instructor asks student groups to report out on the answer for the whole class. At this point, the instructor can clarify misconceptions and add depth when developing a correct answer for the whole class. Instructor’s manuals, which provide guidance on how to implement the exercises in the classroom are provided, are provided for some of the activities. Assessment questions or answer keys are available upon request for many of the activities.

Contextual Modules

These modules apply different analytical techniques to solve real world problems. For example, students work through a set of exercises to determine what is killing the Flamingos at Lake Nakuru by examining data sets and applying analytical principles from areas such as sample preparation, gas chromatography, x-ray fluorescence, voltammetry, and atomic spectroscopy. The modules contain collaborative group exercises that should be implemented in a similar way to the In-Class Activities.

Laboratory Activities

These activities promote authentic scientific inquiry by requiring students to find and interpret literature, design experiments, and troubleshoot experimental difficulties. These multi-week projects help student to build the scientific and soft skills needed to carry out research in the academic or professional setting. Materials for most lab activities include 1) a project overview document, 2) an instructor’s manual, and 3) teaching materials such as student handouts, assignments, grading rubrics, and peer evaluation forms to assess individual contributions to the group project.

Textual Materials

This section contains materials to support In-Class Activities. Some highlights of this section are 1) a complete online Analytical Chemistry Textbook written by David Harvey and 2) text materials to support the In Class Activities on Chemical Equilibrium, Molecular and Atomic Spectroscopy, Separation Science and Electrochemistry written by Tom Wenzel.