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Briggs, Long to Address Cognitive Aspects of Inquiry Learning in Chemistry

Dr. Michael Briggs and Dr. George Long of the Department of Chemistry will present their research on Friday, February 19, 2010, in the department’s seminar series.

The presentation, “Cognitive Aspects of Inquiry Learning in Chemistry,” will describe their NSF-funded research project, “Student Construction of Mental Models: A Framework for the Evaluation of Inductive Teaching Methods in Chemistry.”

The seminar will be held on February 19 at 3:35 p.m. in Weyandt 149. Light refreshments will be served, and all are welcome to attend.

About Dr. Michael Briggs

Dr. Briggs’ current research interests include studies of cognitive structure and processes that account for students’ ability to learn, and the impact this knowledge confers on the teaching/learning dichotomy. Further interests include the design of instruments for the fruitful production of research data for analysis using a Models and Modeling perspective. He is also interested in the application of thermal lensing to analysis of biological materials. Recently, he was co-awarded a National Science Foundation grant of $148,000 to support research into a method of evaluating teaching methods based on the theoretical concept of construction of mental models of chemical concepts.

Dr. Briggs received his undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of Akron, after which he spent seventeen years working for General Tire, Inc., as a chemist and technical director in the U.S., Mexico, and Morocco. He earned a master’s degrees at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, followed by a master’s degree and Ph.D. at Purdue University. He joined the Chemistry Department faculty in 2004.

About Dr. George Long

Dr. Long’s research interests focus on the application of computers and the Internet on chemical education, and on physical chemistry with focus on laser photothermal spectroscopy. Recently, he was co-awarded a National Science Foundation grant of $148,000 to support research into a method of evaluating teaching methods based on the theoretical concept of construction of mental models of chemical concepts.

Dr. Long received his undergraduate degree in chemistry at Thiel College, a master’s degree at Michigan Technological University, and his Ph.D. at Utah State University for Photothermal Spectroscopy using a Pulsed CO2 Laser. He joined the Chemistry Department in 1988.

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