NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1001193
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Pages: 5
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 41
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Bustin' Bunnies: An Adaptable Inquiry-Based Approach Introducing Molecular Weight and Polymer Properties
Mc Ilrath, Sean P.; Robertson, Nicholas J.; Kuchta, Robert J.
Journal of Chemical Education, v89 n7 p928-932 Jul 2012
Plastics are more prevalent in our society than ever before, yet the general public has a limited understanding of why plastics have properties that are vastly different from other common materials such as glass and ceramics. This lab is designed to introduce students to several introductory principles of polymer science and their relation to the plastics industry, while providing points for discussing some of the possible environmental and health hazards associated with plastics. In this lab, students polymerize epsilon-caprolactone to polycaprolactone and then investigate the properties of the resulting polymer. The procedure is inquiry-based in that students are tasked with determining a method for mechanical testing and with pooling the class data to determine and interpret the resulting mechanical property trend. Follow-up questions are designed to help students understand this trend and how it relates to common plastics. This procedure has been successful in a college setting and an AP chemistry class in high school. (Contains 1 table, 1 figure, and 2 schemes.)
Division of Chemical Education, Inc and ACS Publications Division of the American Chemical Society. 1155 Sixteenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 800-227-5558; Tel: 202-872-4600; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A