NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1088212
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Jan
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Build Your Own Photometer: A Guided-Inquiry Experiment to Introduce Analytical Instrumentation
Wang, Jessie J.; Nun´ez, Jose´ R. Rodríguez; Maxwell, E. Jane; Algar, W. Russ
Journal of Chemical Education, v93 n1 p166-171 Jan 2016
A guided-inquiry project designed to teach students the basics of spectrophotometric instrumentation at the second year level is presented. Students design, build, program, and test their own single-wavelength, submersible photometer using low-cost light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and inexpensive household items. A series of structured prelaboratory assignments guide students through the processes of researching background information, designing a photometer device, and developing their own procedure to test the performance of the device. Students also learn basic skills of data acquisition by programming an easy-to-use LabVIEW interface for their device. Using a colorimetric indicator dye, students use their photometers and LabVIEW interfaces to determine the endpoint of an acid-base titration and compare the linear response of their device against that of a commercially available spectrophotometer. Students who completed the experiment indicated that the experience improved their understanding of spectroscopy, as well as their critical thinking skills and research ability.
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; Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A