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Overview on the Use of This Module
This module is designed to guide students to investigate the role that water quality may have on the survival of aquatic species such as frogs and snails. It is developed based on water monitoring activities conducted in wetlands areas in eastern Oregon that were recently reclaimed and restored after many years of agricultural usage. Through this module, students are introduced to fundamental concepts related to sampling as well as analytical methods for the determination of cations and anions in water such as spectrophotometry, atomic absorption spectroscopy, and ion selective electrodes. These materials are designed to be modular in their format and used relatively independently. They can also be implemented at different levels of guidance to students. For example, instructors in a general chemistry course could use the module to introduce the research question but provide students with an already developed sampling plan and detailed instructions to conduct experiments. Alternatively, in a more advanced analytical course, students could be asked to develop and implement the sampling plan as well as research the most appropriate methodologies of analysis. A complete dataset is available that can be used for learning as simple tasks as constructing a calibration curve and predicting the concentration of an analyte in an unknown sample or more advanced statistical data analysis.
These materials could also be used in the classroom as active learning exercises or used as supplement to laboratory experiences, as a prelab for existing experiments or a drylab where the relevant instrumentation is not available.