Practical Applications of Using Visualization Techniques in Chemical Education

Organizer: Patricia M. Todebush, Department of Natural Sciences, Clayton State University, 2000 Clayton State Blvd. Morrow, GA 30260, tel. (678) 466-4788, Email:

In this session, Colin Ashe, Carnegie Mellon University, presented A web-based simulation engine for two Dimensional interactive simulations of molecular systems.   This presentation highlighted a two dimensional web based computational engine for simulations of atoms and molecules.  The talk demonstrated some of the available simulations for the general chemistry curriculum and as well future the simulations under development and the need for Beta testers for the mobile simulation app.  Daniel Barr, Utica College, presented Making their own visualizations, introducing students to the techniques and applications of biomolecular simulations.  Three computational  instructional units for a biochemistry lab were developed for an undergraduate biochemistry lab.  The three units include a visualization lab which leads into a bioinformatics lab and then into a Monte Carlo dynamics lab. The work emphasizes student visualization to help student understanding of form follows function.  Bhawani Venkataraman, Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts, presented Visualization and interactivity in the learning of chemistry in which she highlighted a set of eight in class modules she developed for her students. These modules were developed to help students understand what is actually going on at the molecular level. She developed them to help her students visualize the 3D nature of molecular interactions to help students make connections between geometry and function.  Danaè R. Quirk Dorr, Minnesota State University, presented Boosting laboratory preparedness and experimental comprehension: Integration of online pre-laboratory modules in which a set of pre-lab animated videos with questions were developed for the general/organic/biochemistry (allied health) laboratory course.  These pre-labs were used in a condensed summer session and analysis was done to compare the results of students completing the pre-labs to the control group, those not given access to the pre-lab animations.  Improved student preparedness and experimental comprehension was demonstrated by students completing the pre-lab assignments.  Edmund Moses N. Ndip, Hampton University, presented Visualizing concepts in chemistry – a case study in physical chemistry. He highlighted a visualization component to the traditional problem – model- method – implementation solving scheme used in physical chemistry.  He developed a set of lab activities using modeling and simulations so that students can “See the science” examples included particle in a box and the harmonic oscillator among others.    Patricia M. Todebush, Clayton State University, presented Single class period activities for the science majors’ chemistry course covering an introduction to the gas laws.  Here she highlighted some of the currently used yet poor examples that are given to highlight understanding of the individual gas laws. She then highlighted a few other ways to make the gas laws relevant to current chemistry students.

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