Session S61a (Wednesday, 9:30am, Thomas 216)

P681: Focusing on water: A green general chemistry lab curriculum

Susan Sutheimer (Green Mountain College, USA)

When Green Mountain College decided to adopt a sustainable focus throughout the institution, the chemistry department responded by creating labs that avoided toxic chemicals, minimized energy usage and decreased harmful wastes.  Rather than being a series of unrelated experiments, the new curriculum focuses on the properties and analyses of water.  Beginning with simple concepts such as conductivity and surface tension, the labs gradually become more sophisticated to include methods that utilize titrations, spectroscopy and ion selective electrodes.  Additionally a strong emphasis is placed on real world situations, field trips for sampling, report writing and the use of spreadsheets for data analysis and graphing.  By the end of the semester the students have a “tool box” of professional level analytical and reporting methods that they can add to their resume.


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