ACS Fall 2012 National Meeting

by Colin

I’ll be at this year’s ACS Fall Meeting in Philadelphia next week giving both an oral presentation and a poster at Sci-Mix.  Titles, abstracts, dates, times, and locations are all below.

Bright and early on Sunday (!) morning, I’m giving the following oral presentation:

Web-based simulation engine for 2D interactive simulations of molecular systems

Colin A Ashe1, David J Yaron1, Michael Karabinos1, Laura Bartolo2, John Portman3, W. Craig Carter4, Donald Sadoway4(1) Department of Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University, (2) Center for Materials Informatics, Kent State University, (3) Department of Physics, Kent State University, (4) Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

A particularly difficult aspect of chemistry is connecting atomic level interactions to emergent macroscopic properties. To aid students in developing the intuitions needed to make these connections, we have developed a web-based computational engine for simplified two-dimensional simulations of atoms and molecules. The simulation engine is optimized to give results that well represent the nature of motion and interactions at the atomic scale, as opposed to precise integration of the molecular dynamics. This allows students to controlvarious system parameters and observe the effect of their changes on the visualized atoms, as well as attach charts that provide measurements of important system quantities. The software is modular to allow easy construction of simulations. In this talk, we will highlight the capabilities of our system in general and provide specific examples of simulations created to teach a broad range of concepts like osmotic pressure, interatomic potential energy, and heat transfer.

Sunday, August 19, 2012 08:35 AM
Practical Applications of Using Visualization Techniques in Chemical Education (08:30 AM – 10:50 AM)
Location: Pennsylvania Convention Center 
Room: 112 A

On Monday evening, I’ll be presenting the following poster:

 Advancing chemistry and interdisciplinary STEM education through interactive simulations, computer-facilitated collaborative chat, and novel instructional strategies

Colin A Ashe1, David J Yaron1, W. Craig Carter2, Catherine Chase1, David Adamson1, Laura Bartolo3.(1) Carnegie Mellon University, (2) Massachusetts Institute of Technology, (3) Kent State University, 

I describe a number of recent projects aimed at deepening undergraduate student understanding of difficult and important concepts in chemistry and across STEM disciplines. The longest-running of these projects uses interactive simulations to teach students core concepts related to the behavior of collections of atoms and molecules. These concepts include the energy landscape, entropy, free energy, and how molecular-scale behaviors result in emergent, macroscopically observable properties. Separate investigations are examining the use of an intelligent computer agent to facilitate student discussions about intermolecular forces in a collaborative online chat environment. Additional current studies use a pedagogy based on specially constructed contrasting cases to help students develop a deep understanding of reaction progress and what chemical reaction “equations” mean. Curricular materials and student assessment results will be presented for each project.

Monday, August 20, 2012 08:00 PM
Academic Employment Initiative (08:00 PM – 10:00 PM)
Location: Pennsylvania Convention Center 
Room: Hall D

If you’re also attending the meeting and the subject matter sounds interesting to you, please consider attending my talk or checking out my poster at Sci-Mix.

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