Empowered learning.

Author(s): 

Leslie Bordas

Author Affiliation: 

Spring Hill College

Year: 

2007

Abstract: 

As a result of my participation in the CWCS workshop on Forensics sciences, I developed and taught 2 different courses. The first is a non-majors forensic chemistry class with a laboratory component and the second is a junior/senior level biochemistry lab. The non-majors class introduces the scientific method and critical thinking in a hands-on investigative setting. Physical and chemical properties, types of reactions, thermochemistry and kinetics are just a few of the topics presented within "the cases" the students investigate. In addition to the biochemical techniques taught in our upper level lab (purification chromatography, immuno assays, electrophoresis and PCR), the students at Spring Hill College choose different forensic areas in which they become "experts." They share their expertise through oral presentations and the preparation of a "mini-lab" for their peers. Collaboration is established among the students in an effort to use these techniques to solve "the crime."