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ERIC Number: EJ941010
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Aug
Pages: 5
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 10
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Incorporating Student-Designed Research Projects in the Chemistry Curriculum
Iimoto, Devin S.; Frederick, Kimberley A.
Journal of Chemical Education, v88 n8 p1069-1073 Aug 2011
Although many chemistry students at small liberal arts colleges participate in undergraduate research projects with faculty members, they do not get much experience framing their own research questions and designing their own projects, which is an important part of science. We have implemented a developmental process to help students design and execute their own research projects in a two-course sequence: seminar in the fall and an integrated laboratory in the January term as a capstone experience in the chemistry curriculum. In seminar, students read scientific literature to generate an unanswered question that becomes the basis for a project proposal. Students then compare and contrast various methods to answer the question and propose a project. In the integrated laboratory, students execute the project where they troubleshoot experiments, collect and interpret data, and draw conclusions. Assessment of final papers and student course evaluations indicated that the students met the above goals. Overall, this educational experience can be implemented at other small liberal arts colleges and elements of this project could be adapted at a larger college or university. (Contains 4 tables.)
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
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A