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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 1 Issue 6 (1997), S1430-4171(97)06075-5

Learning to Learn: An Introduction to Capillary Electrophoresis

L. A. Marzilli, P. Bedard, and P. A. Mabrouk*

Department of Chemistry, Northeastern University, Boston, MA 02115

Published online: 27 February 1997

Abstract. This paper describes a multi-week experiential learning capillary electrophoresis (CE) laboratory project for use in Quantitative Analysis. The experiment, which capitalizes on current student interest in biotechnology, has been designed to mimic the tasks a laboratory technician might be asked to perform in setting up and demonstrating the proper function of a new CE instrument. CE was specifically selected because it is a relatively new and extremely powerful separations method for bioanalysis. Working together as a team, the student chemists learn how to successfully operate the capillary electrophoresis instrument, prepare a standard operating protocol, and quantitate caffeine in a real world sample, their choice of soft drink beverage. The assignment builds student self-confidence and teaches students skills likely to maximize their productivity and career longevity in today's ever-changing biotechnology marketplace.

Key Words: Laboratories and Demonstrations; analytical chemistry; experimental learning; quantitative analysis; capillary electrophoresis; caffeine; analytical instrumentation; undergraduate chemistry

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

Article in PDF format (80 KB)

Supporting Materials:

Grading Scheme - Determination of Caffeine in a Soft Drink (7 KB) 10.1007/s00897970075b

Sample Student Protocol (34 KB) 10.1007/s00897970075c

Issue date: Febuary 27, 1997

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