P72: Preparing students for graduate study in chemistryÑGrinnell College
Grinnell College has long been a source of graduates who enroll and complete PhDs in chemistry and related fields. For instance for the period of 1997-2006 Grinnell ranks 12th in the per capita production of students who earn PhDs in chemistry. We believe that students are both enticed into and successful in completing doctoral degrees based upon a curriculum that is inquiry-focused and includes an undergraduate research experience. While the major requires only seven courses in chemistry plus a research project, inquiry and research-like experiences are substantial components of all courses. Grinnell students may enter graduate study with fewer content-focused courses than some students, but they have learned to ask questions, the process of inquiry, to find information, and to discover and learn. Examples of curricular and pedagogical elements, as well as a brief description of the undergraduate research program will be offered.