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Calibration Methods (Gonzalez)

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    • Identify different methods to calibrate instrumentation or analytical methodologies.
    • Choose proper calibration method depending on sample characteristics or instrument.
    • Describe how standards and/or samples are prepared for each calibration method.
    • Calculate concentration from information obtained from each calibration method.


    You must work this handout with your peers. Each section has a STOP sign. When your group reaches it, please stop and share your results. Your professor will give instructions then.


    Calibration or standardization determines the relationship between the analytical response from an instrument and the analyte concentration. This relationship allows then to determine the concentration of the analyte in an unknown sample. There are several methods of calibration. This handout reviews each method and its calculations.  There are direct calibration, standard addition and internal standard addition methods, among others. Each calibration method is used in different scenarios but always help to identify the concentration of the analyte.

    Calibration is an integral part of quality control and quality assurance. It warrants that the instrument and/or method is working properly and as expected. Calibration curves characteristics or calibration results may be compared with previous days to identify if the instrument is working as expected or the signal is drifting, for example. If calibration results are not what was expected, instrumentation or method should be reviewed before continuing.

    You have done several calibrations in your undergraduate laboratories. Discuss with your peers when you have done calibrations and what they were used for. Fill out the following table.



    Instrument Calibrated

    How did you do it?

















    Share your information with your peers. 




    Fill up the following table:


    Sample treatment

    Sample size needed



    Direct calibration






    Standard Addition






    Internal Standard






    Contributors and Attributions

    This page titled Calibration Methods (Gonzalez) is shared under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Contributor.

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