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ERIC Number: EJ1079215
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Oct
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
An Interdisciplinary Guided Inquiry Laboratory for First Year Undergraduate Forensic Science Students
Cresswell, Sarah L.; Loughlin, Wendy A.
Journal of Chemical Education, v92 n10 p1730-1735 Oct 2015
An effective guided inquiry forensic case study (a pharmacy break-in) is described for first-year students. Four robust introductory forensic chemistry and biology experiments are used to analyze potential drug samples and determine the identity of a possible suspect. Students perform presumptive tests for blood on a "point of entry stain" sample; perform chemical presumptive tests on the "suspected drug" alongside known standards of codeine, morphine, and amphetamine; and carry out thin-layer chromatography analysis of the drug samples. They examine the specificity of the Kastle-Meyer and tetramethylbenzidine tests, prepare polymerase chain reaction samples from the suspects' DNA samples, and perform gel electrophoresis to analyze the results. Students are required to analyze and integrate the results and to apply their acquired knowledge within the context of an engaging forensic case study. This first-year laboratory is part of a forensic case study vertically integrated into the curriculum.
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: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A