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ERIC Number: EJ1067443
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jun
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
A Hybrid Integrated Laboratory and Inquiry-Based Research Experience: Replacing Traditional Laboratory Instruction with a Sustainable Student-Led Research Project
Hartings, Matthew R.; Fox, Douglas M.; Miller, Abigail E.; Muratore, Kathryn E.
Journal of Chemical Education, v92 n6 p1016-1023 Jun 2015
The Department of Chemistry at American University has replaced its junior- and senior-level laboratory curriculum with two, two-semester long, student-led research projects as part of the department's American Chemical Society-accredited program. In the first semester of each sequence, a faculty instructor leads the students through a set of previously performed experiments and introduces the students to a research project, specific laboratory techniques, and instrumentation. As such, the first (fall) semester takes the form of a control experiment. During the second (spring) semester, students design and carry out experiments of their own choosing that are based on their research interests and that build upon the first semester's work. In the subsequent academic year, the research is continued by a new set of students. The research from the previous academic year's second semester becomes the control experiments of the current academic year's first semester. In this way, the research project continually grows and develops according to student decisions. During these two semesters, students are assessed on their ability to perform experiments, maintain proper record keeping, designing and following safety protocols, proposal writing, and written and oral presentations of their work. This program, which grants ownership, or autonomy, of a research project to our student body, has been well received by the students, helped to meet departmental objectives, and led to a research publication and a funded grant proposal.
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 - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: District of Columbia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A