Submitted by Barbara Reisner / James Madison University on Wed, 06/10/2015 - 14:27

The 2013 Inorganic Curriculum Survey asked respondents about the resources they used when they teach inorganic chemistry. The choices included inorganic chemistry textbooks, activities from the Journal of Chemical Education, articles from the primary literature (e.g., JACS, Inorg. Chem.), demonstrations, online homework, online resources, podcasts, videos, Wikipedia, and other. About 20% of respondents selected "other" and provided information about these resources. Some people mentioned specific websites; these are now linked through a VIPEr Collection.

Other people listed types of websites they used and other resources. I've compiled these resources here as a source of ideas for the community. If you'd like to add more resources to this list - or provide links to specific resources, please add to this forum. (Better yet, if you have a web resource or app that you use to teach inorganic chemistry, add it to VIPEr as a web resource.)

I've tried to break the resources down by category. This list is by no means complete, but it lists the responses found in the survey data. Enjoy!

Model Kits

  • standard molecular models
  • ICE solid state model kits


Web Resources

  • online symmetry tools (Symmetry @ Otterbein)
  • interactive structures on the web
  • images of orbital shapes
  • online image databases
  • point group tutorials
  • group theory tutorials
  • MO tutorials
  • solid state tutorials
  • atomic orbital tutorials
  • Oxford Ionic Compound lectures (I remember this resource from a few years back but couldn't find it on the web)
  • ACS Committee on Professional Training Supplement on Inorganic Chemistry
  • recorded symposia available online
  • NMR databases
  • NMR tutorials
  • mass spec tutorials
  • NIST critical formation constants of inorganic compounds
  • Nanchem resources housed at Beloit
  • ICE Materials


Software Packages / Modelling / Computational Chemistry

  • SciFinder
  • Chemical Abstracts
  • Cambridge Crystal Structure Database / WebCSD
  • Science Citation Index
  • Mercury (CCDC)
  • ChemDraw
  • software for predicting NMR spectra
  • software for predicting mass spectra
  • molecular modeling programs
  • Spartan
  • CrystalMaker
  • WinGx
  • locally developed software
  • WebMO, Mopac, GAMESS
  • GoogleDocs
  • Avogadro, Gaussian
  • Bond Valence Sum calculators


Locally/Personally Developed Instructional Materials

  • "reading checks" and "warm-ups"
  • hands on class activities
  • lecture capture software (AV recordings of all lectures)
  • handouts
  • lecture notes
  • problem sets (self-developed)
  • Learning Management System (Blackboard, Moodle)
  • PowerPoint
  • on-line notes
  • POGIL activities
  • custom course reader
  • demonstrations
  • research problems of students
  • active learning activities
  • pre-recorded lectures 
  • self-published book
  • notes from when I was in grad school
  • workshops


Specific Print / e-Resources  (a number of people mentioned using jourals)

  • Nature Chemistry (general interest articles)
  • books and e-books on transition metal chemistry
  • NY Times
  • inorganic reference books
  • organic reference books
  • books that aren't textbooks
  • bioinorganic books


Getting Outside of the Classroom / Moving Beyond a Single Instructor

  • visits to labs
  • visits to the library
  • guest lecturers (including research faculty who have specific expertise)
  • recorded online symposia
  • Skype with government agencies / hearings