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Research Guides

CHM217: Introduction to Analytical Chemistry

Before the Lab

To succeed in your analytical chemistry labs, make sure you arrive prepared! Below are some steps to take and information to review before the lab.

1. Read the Lab Manual

Before you head into the lab, you need to do some background reading. The first thing you should do is read the lab manual!

The following sections are important to review in advance:

  • Introduction: Provides important background information and context.
  • Procedures: Outlines the techniques and chemicals you will need for the lab
  • References: Includes information you will need to interpret your results

2. Find Safety Information

It is important to note the chemicals you will be using during the lab and how to safely handle and dispose of them by reviewing each substance's Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS).

3. Find Chemical Properties

Next, you should note the most common chemical properties of the chemicals you will be using, such as melting point (mp), boiling point (bp), solubility, etc. This information can be found by searching within the online handbooks and resources listed below.

4. Review background information

Your lab manual may contain references to resources that contain information you need to understand and interpret the results of each experiment. Visit the Reference Resources tab to find links to your required course texts and other recommended reference books.

Use the methods below to find and access other resources that may be referenced in your lab manual. Still can't find what you're looking for? Contact your Chemistry Librarian for help.

Journal Abbreviations

If you are unable to find an article by title or don't have the title of the article, it may be more effective to search first for the journal it was published in. ACS Citation Style requires journal titles to be abbreviated in citations, as in the examples below:

J. Am. Chem. Soc. = Journal of the American Chemical Society
J. Chem. Rev. = Journal of Chemical Reviews

This means that you may need to identify the full title of the journal before searching for it. Below are tools you can use to find the full title of an article based on its abbreviation.

Once you identify the full title, you can use the Journal Search tool in LibrarySearch to search for and access the journal. Click the Available Online link to navigate to the publisher's page, then look for a list of previous issues and narrow down by year, volume and issue.