First Look at Coordination Complexes

When transitioning into inorganic chemistry from organic chemistry, students are surprised by the complexity of metal complexes. To ease this transition, students are asked to look at the crystal structure of a coordination complex [(+/-)cis-dichloro-bis(ethylenediamine)-cobalt(III) chloride monohydrate], make some observations about what they see, and provide a list of questions that they would like answered. Students usually note that there are atoms/ions that are "floating" and are seemingly unattached to anything else in the structure.

Anthony L. Fernandez / Merrimack College Sun, 09/06/2020 - 15:08
Chemistry Icebreakers

We have developed a set of icebreaker activities that could be used at any course level, either in an online video chat or in a classroom. These are based on the popular Mad Libs game in which some words are left out of a story and players are asked to provide words to fill in the blanks without knowing much about the story. We've provided an introduction to the game, definition of typical parts of speech that are requested (ie, adverb, noun, adjective, etc), and three starter activities.

Anne Bentley / Lewis & Clark College Sat, 08/15/2020 - 22:37
Easy and Inexpensive Conversion of Lab Safety Goggles to Face Shields

In the time of COVID-19, a need for additional PPE in the form of face shields was deemed required for safe laboratory work when in the presence of other students and faculty.  An inexpensive method was devised to convert standard laboratory safety goggles into a face shield through the use of commercially available plastic report or presentation covers (sometimes called binding covers). This LO describes the fabrication process along with chemical compatibility and flammability testing of the purchased plastic sheets.

Amanda Reig / Ursinus College Thu, 08/06/2020 - 13:30
A cobalt hydroformylation catalyst tribute to Malcolm Green

In this paper (Llewellyn, Green and Cowley, Dalton Trans. 2006, 4164-4168) the synthesis and characterization of two cobalt compounds with an N-heterocyclic carbene ligand (IMes) are reported. the first, [Co(CO)3(IMes)Me] was prepared by the reaction of [Co(CO)3(PPh3)Me] with IMes. The second compound, [Co(CO)3(IMes)COMe] is formed by the addition of Co to the first.

Chip Nataro / Lafayette College Mon, 07/27/2020 - 20:00

Blomstrand, Jørgensen, and Werner

Submitted by Brad Wile / Ohio Northern University on Fri, 07/10/2020 - 11:05

This is a short set of slides I use to introduce aspects of coordination chemistry for my foundation level inorganic chemistry class. 

Demonstration of Hard-Soft Acid-Base Theory: An Ion-Exchanger for Recovery of Rare Earth Metals

Submitted by Gary L. Guillet / Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus on Wed, 07/08/2020 - 08:19

The article from The Journal of the American Chemical Society by M. Kanatzidis et al describes a new ion-exchange material (FJSM-SnS) that shows high selectivity for rare-earth metals (REE) and very fast adsorption kinetics.  A number of techniques are used to characterize the properties of the compound that students may not be very familiar with but the article presents in an accessible way.

The reciprocal interview: A strategy for the first day of class

The reciprocal interview is a first day of class strategy described by Hermann and Foster,1 centered around changing classroom norms. The instructor begins by interviewing students about their goals and expectations for the course, before later turning these around as reasonable expectations of the students. In essence, this is a strategy to invite students to think about the course in a business-like environment, and view their expectations and the instructor expectations as originating from the same set of motivations.

Brad Wile / Ohio Northern University Wed, 07/01/2020 - 12:54
Evans' Method Calculator

A spreadsheet hosted on Pete Wolczanski's webpage for calculating (mu)effective

Brad Wile / Ohio Northern University Fri, 06/26/2020 - 13:35
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion LOs

This collection was created to compile the growing number of LOs related to diversity, equity, and inclusivity (DEI) in chemistry. It will be updated periodically as new LOs are created.

In addition to the LOs listed, here are some other resources on VIPEr that are relevant to DEI.


Shirley Lin / United States Naval Academy Tue, 06/23/2020 - 10:36
Pre-Modern Chemistry: A Brief World History

This Powerpoint presentation was developed to support diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in the chemistry classroom. One of the challenges of modern chemistry (and other modern STEM fields) is that the history discussed in general chemistry textbooks often focuses on achievements by Western scientists. While the most prominent chemists in the area of modern atomic theory were privileged, Western white men, their ideas were influenced by centuries of chemistry practiced by peoples across the globe.

Shirley Lin / United States Naval Academy Fri, 06/19/2020 - 10:40