Sei sulla pagina 1di 29

Name:

INDIVIDUAL INVESTIGATION

STUDENT HANDBOOK

Individual Investigation - Notes for guidance


This is very important feature of the A-level course and will contribute 15% to your A-level mark.
There are similarities with the investigations which were part of your GCSE Science course, but the rigour expected
at A-level is much higher. The Investigation must also be synoptic and draw from more than one area of your ALevel work.
This pack contains a number of important documents that you will need to refer to throughout the investigation and
write-up phase, you will need it for the next 9 months so please look after this you will not be given another one!
Contents
Probity & general guidance

Deadlines

An example Project Proposal

Selected extracts from the Examination Boards guidance for the Individual Investigation

Mark-scheme

Guidance for the selection of a Project

Notes on the Initial Plan, risk assessments and technical support

Probity
Sources & References. We expect you to carry out your investigation diligently, accurately and honestly. If
you use any source to develop a plan or in analysis of your data using theory, this must be acknowledged and
credited in a reference section, and the appropriate section of the text annotated. Correctly annotated and referenced
sources, just like the Case Study, scores extra marks.

Collecting data. This must be collected by you in the laboratory. You will need to record all your data at the time
that it is obtained on duplicating paper that we will provide; this must be recorded with appropriate details, including
your name and date, the nature of experiment and data obtained. All rough pages of data must be countersigned by
the teacher; and the duplicate set will be retained in the department. ALL rough data pages must be submitted with
the final report as an appendix.
Any attempt at falsifying your data will be penalised harshly. Falsified evidence includes accuracy inconsistent
with the observed skills that you used in obtaining the data, accuracy inconsistent with the procedure followed
and additional data from experiments not carried out. If we suspect that you have obviously tampered with your
results when you submit your final report then we will seek the opinion of an expert chemist outside of the
School as to the creditability of the results. If they also conclude that the results show signs of dishonesty then we
shall have no alternative other than informing the Examination Board of our findings.

Plagiarism If we have proof of plagiarism then we will withdraw your coursework from the final assessment. If
we suspect you of plagiarism then we reserve the right to invite you to attend an oral examination or viva.

Authentication Your work will be authenticated by your teacher at various stages of its development and writeup; individual sections will need to be submitted as required in the deadline section. This is critical as it helps us to
demonstrate to the exam board that you are completing the work as an individual.

General Outline
There are 8 "Skill Areas" in an A-level investigation. Six will be assessed on the written evidence that you submit:

Section 1

Planning

(Criteria A, B, C)

Section 2

Results

(Criteria D)

Section 3
(Criteria E, F)

Additional
Skills
(Criteria G, H)

Analysing &
Evaluating

Demand &
Manipulative
skills

identify and describe the aims of the investigation;


describe the chemical knowledge which they have researched in
order to help them devise their plan;
describe the equipment, materials and experimental procedures
they use to achieve the investigation aims;
include a risk assessment;
include a list of references to sources they have consulted to
help them devise their plan.
In all of these, candidates should be careful to use technical
terms correctly and pay careful attention to spelling, punctuation
and grammar.
Record the observations and measurements made during the
investigation, taking care that there are a sufficient number of
good quality measurements and/or observations that are
presented clearly

describe the outcomes of their investigation;

draw together observations and/or manipulate raw data using


calculations and graphs;

interpret observations and measurements;

draw conclusions from raw and/or manipulated data and


observations using underlying chemical knowledge;

comment on the limitations of practical procedures;

calculate, where appropriate, the experimental uncertainty


associated with measurements;

evaluate the choices of equipment, materials and practical


procedures used in the investigation.
Practical Skills

work safely;

manipulate equipment and materials;

make observations and take measurements in an organised


way.
Demand

using unfamiliar equipment and chemical ideas;

using experimental procedures in unfamiliar situations;

using chemical ideas in unfamiliar situations;

devising innovative experimental procedures;

solving emerging problems.

Each student is expected to research and conduct their own project individually. Obviously we will guide you
through the process, but ultimately you must ensure that you are fully informed as to the criteria to which this work
is assessed.
In order to gain the highest mark you can and to give us the chance to offer help, it is important that you work to the
deadlines detailed later in this pack. Your teachers will then be able to offer the maximum guidance, support and
advice.
Make sure at each stage that you keep in mind the criteria used to mark the investigation (which is included),
these will be discussed during the tutorials at the start of next term.

Individual Investigation Deadlines


There are a number of deadlines that we will require you to observe. Meeting these deadlines is so important that
failure to meet any of these deadlines will result in sanctions being imposed against you, up to and including internal
suspension.

Summer Term

Thoroughly read the pack provided about the Individual Investigation.


Work out a short-list of possible areas of interest and then identify the investigation you prefer. It is vital
that your chosen investigation should provide quantitative data, which can be analysed and from
which conclusions can be drawn and also must be synoptic.
Research the project as far as you can - you do have access to the resources of the Chemistry Department in
the Study Centre, although we would insist that you do not borrow any books at this stage of the term. The
Internet might well prove useful for preliminary planning but note website addresses, as they will have to
be quoted in your project.
Sign up on the A Level notice board the project that you are researching, so that other students know what
you are researching, so as to avoid duplication of projects, which will not be permitted. It will only be
confirmed once we have a copy of your Project Proposal, if you want to do a similar project to another
member of the year group discuss with them!

By Wednesday, July 1st - Project Proposal


Submit your Project Proposal for your intended investigation to one of your usual teachers, only at this stage will
your choice of project be confirmed. Only one person will be allowed to undertake each investigation from the
Suggestions list - no joint investigations will be allowed. Although we will permit some overlap between
teaching groups. This is not an exhaustive list; you may devise your own title.
Your project proposal should consist of:
a working title in the form of a question,
an aim (what you intend to find out),
an outline list of the data that needs to be gathered to fulfil the aim
an outline of the methods you intend to use to gather your data,
a brief summary of the chemicals & equipment required
evidence of how your investigation is synoptic
An example of such a project is provided. Your outline will be considered and any suggested modifications will
be discussed with you at the start of next term.
During the summer break try and find out as much about the ideas that you plan to explore and the methods you
will use. Even if at this stage it only makes a little sense it will still be invaluable for when you start the project in
earnest.

Feedback: You will be notified of your project supervisor at the start of next term; this teacher will be
responsible for assessing your work throughout the whole process.

By Wednesday, 16th September Discussion with Supervisor


You are responsible for making appointments with your supervisor to discuss your project before Wednesday 16
September, they might not have a detailed knowledge of your project and so it is your responsibility to become the
expert for your experiment. At this meeting you will discuss the project and identify any potential problems that
need solving, including ensuring that the project has sufficient demand. You will be expected to have a copy of your
principle reference for the chemical system that you are investigating.

By Thursday, 8th October The Initial Plan


See separate sheet for details, but we require the basics of your plan, and most importantly,
your risk assessment and the technical support request. This must be handed to your
supervisor. Pro-forma sheets can be found in QC3, or in the A-Level computer files.

Following initial discussion and before Half-Term

Research and plan your chosen project thoroughly.


We cannot over-emphasise the importance of this planning - a good project is almost impossible to achieve
without this initial work.
You must consult as many likely books and other sources of background and practical information as you
can. Note these references - you will need to quote them in your introduction.

The practical work must also be planned, your project "Methods" established, and the apparatus and
chemical requirements listed. Note that it is your responsibility to check the availability of chemicals and
sources of supply (along with the cost) if the Chemistry Prep Room does not carry the substance as a stock
material.

By Half-Term any corrections that your supervisor requires of you are made, remember you will need to
submit a draft of your final plan by Friday, 6 th November. Whilst you are permitted to alter you plan prior to
it being marked it must be as a consequence of developments encountered in the experimental phase.

During Half-Term - Make sure that you are happy with what you propose to do. Consider how you will
monitor the progress of your work it is vital that you do this. To meet later deadlines you will need to write
up the theory and your initial plan over the half term break.

Friday, 6th November Submit the draft Plan


You are required to hand in a copy of your Plan; this should be as close to a final version as you can manage. Whilst
you will have the opportunity to alter this section in light of the experiments that you conduct it should not be
substantially different. This copy will be authenticated and retained in the department.

November 9th to 27th The Investigation


The whole of the first day and all scheduled chemistry lessons will be devoted to the investigation. Use
of "Free-Periods" might also be possible (subject to safety).

Write up any alterations to your plan as soon as they occur; and if necessary make alterations to
the supporting theory.
You will probably need to spend between 15 and 20 hours on practical work, and a similar amount
of time on the write-up in the evenings.
Write-up neat versions of your results table every night.
Make sure that results are monitored constantly - as a minimum, repeat any experiment which
seems to be suspect. For high marks all experiments should be repeated, and anomalies
reinvestigated.

By Saturday 5th December submit the first two sections of the final report
You are required to hand in a neat, final version of the plan and results; this will be authenticated and assessed by
your supervisor. You will not be able to alter your plan or results table after this date. You need to ensure that your
supervisor has the blue copy of all your results. The results tables should be clearly laid out in a logical manner
including units. We do not set homework during this phase so use your time wisely.

By Friday 5th February submit the final section of the final report
During the half-term preceding this deadline you will be asked to bring in your work, partly to allow us to monitor
your progress and to give you the opportunity to ask your class teacher for specific assistance during lesson time.

Rough Drafts
You should be aware that a completed project can take 3 or more hours to assess; subsequently we will not guarantee
their final assessment until the last week of the Lent term. There are no rough drafts, and work will not be returned
for improvement.
You should seek guidance from your supervisor as you write up the project to confirm your understanding of the
assessment criteria with respect to your own work.

Failure to meet deadlines


We are required by the exam board to register and log any and all late work, even by one day. A copy of the file will
be sent to the exam board with the final marks that we submit. If you are unable to hand work in due to sudden
illness then, in line with the requirements of the exam boards I will require a copy of a supporting doctors note. If
you anticipate being unable to hand work in on the due date, it must be handed in early. Since you have a minimum
of four weeks to prepare work for each deadline there can be no extension unless absence exceeds two weeks.

Seeking Help
Please do not hesitate to ask for help. If we ask you if everything is OK it is usually because we are concerned that
things are not progressing as we would hope and we want to offer you some help. We will offer assistance in the
form of questions that will help you to resolve a problem for yourself. On other occasions it is because you are
tackling an unfamiliar procedure and you might benefit from a little guidance. Unless everything really is OK accept
our offer to assist!
If we have to offer so much support that we will need to reduce the maximum number of marks available we will
give you clear and ample warning. But remember, above all else an experiment that produces no useable results on
your own will always score less than a project that had a significant level of assistance but obtained results.

J P Seaman

Sample Project Proposal

Sep 09

Is there a relationship between the equilibrium constant and temperature?


Aim:

To find values of KC (equilibrium constant) over a range of temperatures for the equilibrium:
H2 + I2 2 HI
If ln KC is plotted against 1/T, the slope of the curve at any point is equal to -H/c.R 1
(c = unit conversion constant: R = universal gas constant). If H is constant over a range of
temperatures then this should produce a straight line graph.

Data to Obtain:
Concentrations of iodine and hydrogen iodide in the equilibrium mixture for at least 5 different
temperatures. Temperatures are to be converted to the absolute scale (Kelvin). Concentrations to be
measured using titration, concentrations are converted into Kc using the following relationship:

Kc

[ HI ] 2
[ H 2 ][ I 2 ]

Procedure:
Equal quantities (in moles) of hydrogen and iodine will be placed in a thick walled glass flask and
allowed to reach equilibrium at constant temperature. Temperature will vary between 400 and 500C
at 20C intervals using an electric furnace. Each experiment will be repeated, at least once.
It will be assumed that the equilibrium has been reached by visual inspection for the intensity of the
iodine colour. Once equilibrium has been reached the mixture will be rapidly quenched in an accurately
measured volume of cold potassium iodide solution where both the iodine and the hydrogen iodide will
readily dissolve. Samples of this reaction mixture will be titrated separately against sodium thiosulphate
(to measure the iodine) and sodium hydroxide (to measure the hydrogen iodide) Equilibrium
concentrations of these components will be measured by titration, and the hydrogen concentration
calculated by difference. Each titration will be repeated twice.

Equipment & Chemicals:


High temperature oven (400 - 500C)
10 20 thick walled glass reaction vessels (max. internal pressure 7 atm)
Equipment for titration
3 d.p. balance
Hydrogen gas
Iodine
Sodium hydroxide
Sodium thiosulphate

Synoptic:
Concept

Topic

Module

Amount of material

EL

Measuring concentrations

Equilibria & concentration

EP

Equilibria & partial pressure

AA

The following guidance has been adapted from:


1

W. Moore, Physical Chemistry, 5th edn., p294, Longman, Harlow, 1972

Teacher Support Materials: GCE Chemistry B (Salters) H035/H435, Practical Skills Handbook, Version 1.1
OCR 2008

The Individual Investigation Report Further Detail


Authentication of individual investigation reports
Teachers should sign and date each of the three sections of candidates written investigation reports to signify that to
the best of their knowledge the work is that of the candidate concerned.
Risk assessments
Section 1 of the report must include a risk assessment.

It should cover
o

all of the chemicals that are to be used,

o any chemical produced during the investigation that has a significant hazard associated with it
o

any process undertaken during the investigation that has a significant hazard associated with it;

Risk assessments should be selective and not just a copy of general risk information. They should focus
on the chemical in the form it is to be used and in the context in which it is to be used. For example:

o 1 mol dm-3 sulfuric acid should be identified as irritant rather than corrosive;
o

ethanol should be identified as being highly flammable which is why it should be kept away from
naked flames;

methanol is highly flammable and toxic which is why prolonged use should be undertaken in a fume
cupboard.

It should be noted that providing a list of materials with which a chemical reacts violently is not relevant
if these materials are not to be used in the candidates investigation;

A good first place to look up risk assessment information is in the CLEAPSS Hazcards. Information
about less common chemicals may be found in a chemical supplier catalogue;

An increasingly comprehensive, relevant and precise risk assessment will be expected to move to the
higher mark levels in skill C.

References
Section 1 must include appropriate references to information consulted and used in writing up the final report

Candidates should make a note of references whenever they make use of resources so they can say
where the information came from;

References should be precise and be linked by a simple numbering system to the parts of the text of the
investigation report in which the information from the resource is used;

When citing references the following formats are recommended:

i) Books

A. N. Author and A. N. Author, Title, Publisher name, Publisher location, xth edition, year, pp. xy.
OR
A. N. Author and A. N. Author, in Title, ed. A. N. Editor, Publisher name, Publisher location, x th edition, year, pp. x
y.
ii) Magazines, journals etc.

A. N. Author and A. N. Author, Title of magazine/journal, year, volume, (issue no.), pp. xy.
iii) Websites

Actual web link, description of content, date accessed.


e.g. www.york.ac.uk/depts/chemrev/project.htm , article on decomposing hydrogen peroxide, accessed 23
October 2007.

Candidates should include references to both written and electronic material;


An increasing number and range of references will be expected to move to the higher mark levels in skill
C.

Experimental methods
Candidates should devise their initial plan which is authenticated by their teacher before they start practical work.
They should expect to expand and sometimes modify this section as the investigation proceeds.

All of the fine detail of experimental methods used in the investigation should be included such as the
amounts and concentrations of materials used and the equipment used in chemical processes;

The experimental methods planned by the candidate and included should reflect the attention to accuracy
and detail expected in an A2 assessment;

Pipettes or burettes rather than measuring cylinders should be used for accurate measurement of volumes
of liquid, for example, in serial dilutions;

In kinetics investigations involving the collection of a gas, measurements should be made continually
over time rather than by measuring the total volume evolved in a set time. It is often more effective to
record the time at which particular volumes are evolved rather than trying to measure the volume at
particular times;

In investigations which set out to analyse the content of materials such as vitamin C or aspirin it is
helpful to be able to compare recorded data to reliable data such as an internal standard of pure material
or to external information;

Where organic or inorganic synthesis is planned candidates should include quantitative data such as
percentage yield and should plan appropriate tests on the identity of the materials they have made;

Investigations into electrochemical cells can be very superficial. Candidates need to change
concentration on a logarithmic scale to study the effect on cell potential.

Chemical knowledge
Candidates should include in section 1 of their report chemical ideas which they have researched in order to help
them devise their investigation plan.

The chemical knowledge should cover all aspects of the proposed investigation;

It should be comprehensive and detailed;

It will not be unusual for candidates to have referred to ideas which are not included in the Chemistry B
(Salters) course. For example, it would be expected that investigations into the effect of temperature on
the rate of a reaction will refer to the Arrhenius equation and investigations into electrochemical cells
will refer to the Nernst equation.

Recording data

Recording data in a specially dedicated booklet rather than on loose pieces of paper can prevent loss of
vital information and allow candidates to more easily see the development of their investigation. Dating
entries is also helpful;

All data collected during the investigation should be recorded, not just averages of several experiments;

Data should be recorded in tables with clear headings so it is clear what experiment the information
relates to;

All data should have appropriate units;

If an experiment results in poor data, candidates should consider the need to modify the experimental
conditions to improve the data, e.g. low titres from a titration or where a gas is evolved too quickly or
too slowly;

Where observations form a key part of the recorded information they should be comprehensive, precise
and detailed.

Graphs

Candidates should plot and examine graphs as soon as they have collected the data;

Graphs should use a full page of the investigation report;

Graphs should include a suitable heading with clearly labelled axes including appropriate units;

An electronic spreadsheet can be used to draw graphs but sometimes there is an advantage in plotting the
points only and drawing in the curve by hand. It is often important to show the origin and consider it in
relation to a straight line;

In investigations into reaction kinetics candidates may use a range of types of graphs including a plot of
rate against concentration squared for a second order reaction, graphs of log rate against log of
concentration and a graph to find the activation enthalpy of a reaction using a plot based on the
Arrhenius equation. A simple plot of rate against temperature would not normally be appropriate in the
context of an A2 assessment.

Drawing conclusions
In section 3 of their report candidates should draw together observations and/or manipulate raw data using
calculations and graphs.

This will involve interpreting observations and measurements and drawing conclusions from raw and/or
manipulated data and observations;

The conclusions should be evaluative rather than descriptive and make use of chemical knowledge and
ideas described in section 1 of the report;

In some investigations candidates will be able to identify general trends in the data they have collected
or pick out clear outcomes. They may be able to calculate differences within the data set or differences
from expected behaviour. This quantitative approach should allow them to comment with authority on
the fine detail of the results they have collected.

Evaluating the investigation


In section 3 of their report candidates should also evaluate their investigation.

They should comment on the limitations of practical procedures, calculate, where appropriate, the
experimental uncertainty associated with measurements and evaluate the choices of equipment, materials
and practical procedures used in the investigation;

Candidates should be able to identify those features of the investigation which are particularly important
in ensuring the accuracy and reliability of the data collected.

Manipulative skills
The practical work undertaken by the candidate will be supervised by the teacher who will assess manipulative skills
in skill area G. Teachers will use a working document to keep a record of their observation of each candidates
ability to carry out practical work safely and skillfully so that they can award an appropriate mark at the end of the
practical work period.
The teacher should assess the ability of the candidate to work safely, manipulate equipment and materials and to
make observations and take measurements.

Demand of the investigation


In skill area H teachers assess the demand of the investigation undertaken by the candidate. Teachers take account of
the demand arising from the candidate:

using unfamiliar equipment and chemical ideas;

using experimental procedures with which they are familiar in unfamiliar situations;

using chemical ideas with which they are familiar in unfamiliar situations;

devising innovative experimental procedures;

solving emerging problems.

A candidate planning and implementing an investigation in which they take a kinetics experiment which they have
carried out as part of the Chemistry B (Salters) course and expand this to explore additional concentration variables
would probably merit a mark for demand of 3 out of 5. If the candidate also explores the effect of temperature using
the Arrhenius equation or the relative effect of different catalysts this might increase the demand to a mark of 4 out
of 5. If the candidate devises original experimental methods to follow the course of the reaction or manipulates data
using complex calculations or graphs this might increase the demand to 5 out of 5. If the candidate does not extend
their investigation much above what they encountered in the course experiment this might merit a mark of 1 or 2 out
of 5.
Some candidates may devise investigations that involve chemical ideas which they have not met before. Other
candidates may choose investigations where they use equipment that they have not met before or equipment which
they have devised themselves. These types of investigation will merit a high demand mark.
Some candidates may devise investigations which have little more demand than might be expected at Key Stage 4.
These types of investigation will merit a low demand mark.
It should be noted, however, that it is the approach to the investigation rather than the topic itself which will
determine the demand. The reaction of magnesium with acids can, for example, be treated in a very superficial
manner in which only the effect of acid concentration on rate of reaction is explored. The same topic can also be
investigated in a much deeper approach where the effect of different acids (strong, weak and oxidising) are
compared, the effect of temperature is considered and the effect of added cations and anions on the interactions
taking place at the metal surface are investigated.

Assessment:
Best fit mark schemes
For each skill shown in the tables that follow, the descriptors will be applied in a best fit manner to choose a mark
between 1 and 5 or 6 (depending on the skill) which best describes the candidates work. This should take account, if
appropriate, of a higher level of achievement in some of the characteristics within the descriptors and a lower level of
achievement in other characteristics. This should be achieved by selecting the descriptors at each level which provide
the best match with different aspects of the candidates work. A mark of 0 should be awarded if the descriptors are
not met in any way.

A copy of the marking criteria follow over the next three pages.

Section 1 Markscheme
Name:
Skill A
Chemical Ideas

1 Mark
Describes a small range of basic chemical
knowledge in support of the investigation.

3 Marks
Describes a wide range of chemical
knowledge in support of the investigation.

6 Marks
Describes a comprehensive range of
chemical knowledge in support of the
investigation.

Describes chemical knowledge superficially


and includes few details.

Describes chemical knowledge in some depth


and includes many details.

Describes chemical knowledge in great depth


and includes all appropriate details.

Makes errors in using chemical knowledge and


describes chemical knowledge which is not
relevant to the actual investigation undertaken.

Makes a few errors when describing chemical


knowledge and describes chemical
knowledge which is generally relevant to the
actual investigation undertaken.

Describes chemical knowledge without errors


and describes chemical knowledge which is
fully relevant to the actual investigation
undertaken.

1 Mark
Identifies and defines the aims of the
investigation in a vague or unclear manner.

3 Marks
Identifies and defines the aims of the
investigation in a generally precise and clear
manner.

6 Marks
Identifies and defines the aims of the
investigation in a very precise and clear
manner.

Selects equipment and materials and devises


experimental procedures that are sometimes
inappropriate to achieve the aims of the
investigation.

Selects equipment and materials and devises


experimental procedures that are generally
appropriate to achieve the aims of the
investigation.

Selects equipment and materials and devises


experimental procedures that are fully
appropriate to achieve the aims of the
investigation.

(aims, choices,
descriptions)

Describes in limited detail the experimental


procedures used.

Describes, including most appropriate detail,


experimental procedures used.

Describes in fine detail the experimental


procedures used.

Skill C
Communication

1 Mark
Includes a risk assessment which covers only
some of the hazards, contains much material
which is not relevant to the investigation
undertaken, is superficial and is inaccurate.

3 Marks
Includes a risk assessment which covers
most hazards, contains material which is
generally relevant to the investigation
undertaken, is in some detail and is generally
accurate.

5 Marks
Includes a risk assessment which covers all
hazards, contains material all of which is
relevant to the investigation undertaken,
contains full details and is accurate.

Includes a list of references which is linked to a


narrow range of sources and which lacks detail
about the sources.

Includes a list of references which is linked to


a fairly wide range of sources and which
includes some detail about the sources.

Includes a list of references which is linked to


a comprehensive and appropriate range of
sources which includes detail about the
sources linked effectively to specific parts of
the written account.

Produces an account which is unclear and is


difficult to understand, in which specialist
vocabulary is used inappropriately and in
which spelling of technical terms is frequently
inaccurate.

Produces an account which is generally clear


and is generally easy to understand, in which
specialist vocabulary is used appropriately
most of the time, and in which spelling of
technical terms is generally accurate.

Produces an account which is very clear and


easy to understand, in which specialist
vocabulary is used appropriately all of the
time and in which spelling of technical terms
is accurate.

Apply chemical
knowledge and
processes to
unfamiliar
situations.
(range, depth,
accuracy)

Skill B
Methods
Select and
describe
appropriate
qualitative and
quantitative
methods.

Select, organise
and communicate
relevant
information.
(risk assessment,
references, clarity,
vocabulary, QWC)

Section 2 Markscheme & Practical Competence


Skill D
Recording Results

Name:

1 Mark
Records significantly fewer observations
and/or measurements than are appropriate or
the particular investigation undertaken and
records a limited range of observations and/or
measurements.

3 Marks
Records most appropriate observations
and/or measurements for the particular
investigation undertaken, and records a
wider range of observations and/or
measurements.

6 Marks
Records all appropriate observations and/or
measurements for the particular investigation
undertaken and records a wide range of
observations and/or measurements to
investigate the chosen topic effectively.

Records observations that are vague, lack


detail or are inappropriate and/or
measurements that are imprecise, of poor
quality or lack appropriate units.

Records observations that are often precise,


detailed and appropriate and/or
measurements that are generally precise, of
good quality and include appropriate units.

Records observations that are precise,


detailed and appropriate and/or
measurements that are precise, of good
quality and include appropriate units.

(results: number,
range, quality,
clarity)

Records observations and/or measurements


in a haphazard, unclear or disorganised
format which make it difficult to understand
them.

Records observations and/or measurements


in a generally clear and organised format
which make it possible to understand them
with little difficulty.

Records observations and/or measurements


in a clear and organised format which make it
easy to understand them.

Skill G
Manipulation

1 Mark
Works safely some of the time

3 Marks
Works safely most of the time.

5 Marks
Works safely all of the time.

Demonstrates safe
and skilful
techniques and
processes.

Demonstrates competent manipulative skills in


basic practical procedures and resolves
problems with help.

Demonstrates competent manipulative skills


in a wide range of practical procedures and
resolves minor problems without help.

Demonstrates highly developed manipulative


skills in all practical procedures and resolves
most problems without help.

Some aspects of the approach to practical


work are organised, takes some care when
making observations and/or measurements
and pays some attention to detail.

Demonstrates a reasonable degree of


organisation in approach to practical work,
makes most observations and/or
measurements carefully and pays attention
to some of detail most of the time.

Demonstrates a highly organised approach to


practical work, makes all observations and/or
measurements with great care and pays
great attention to detail.

1 Mark The level of demand is low because:


Experimental procedures cover activities
undertaken as a normal part of the chemistry
course;

3 Marks Demand is intermediate because:


Experimental procedures extend beyond
activities undertaken as a normal part of the
chemistry course and are used in new
situations;

5 Marks The level of demand is high because:


Experimental procedures used in the
investigation have not been previously met or
are familiar procedures which are developed
and used in new and unfamiliar situations;

Chemical ideas which have been met before


are used in familiar situations;

Chemical ideas which have been met before


are used in new situations;

Chemical ideas used in the investigation


have not been previously met or are familiar
ideas which are developed and used in new
and unfamiliar situations;

There is some limited evidence of innovation


or creativity in devising experimental
procedures and/or, if appropriate, in solving
emerging problems.

There is some evidence of innovation or


creativity in devising experimental
procedures and/or, if appropriate, in solving
emerging problems.

There is clear evidence of innovation or


creativity in devising experimental
procedures and/or, if appropriate, in solving
emerging problems.

Make, record and


communicate
reliable and valid
observations and
measurements with
appropriate
precision and
accuracy.

(safety, manipulative
skills, organisation)

Skill H
Demand
Develop and apply
familiar and new
chemical knowledge
and processes in
demanding
situations.
(procedures,
chemical ideas,
innovation/creativity
)

Section 3 Markscheme
Skill E
Analysis
Analyse and
interpret the
results of
investigative
activities.
(outcomes,
calculations,
graphs,
interpretation of
observations,
conclusions)

Skill F
Evaluation
Explain and
evaluate the
methodology and
results of
investigative
activities.
(limitations of
procedures,
reliability and
validity of
observations,
uncertainty
associated with
measurements,
equipment and
procedure
choice)

Name:

1 Mark
Describes the outcomes of the investigation in
basic terms only.

3 Marks
Describes the outcomes of the investigation
in reasonable detail.

6 Marks
Describes the outcomes of the investigation in
full detail.

Makes little effective use of observations to


support conclusions and/or makes little
progress in calculations or draws poor quality
or inappropriate graphs from measurements.

Makes reasonably effective use of


observations to support conclusions and/or
generally uses calculations effectively and
draws graphs from measurements which are
generally of good quality and appropriate.

Makes very effective use of observations to


support conclusions and/or uses calculations
effectively and draws graphs from
measurements which are all of good quality
and appropriate.

Makes little use of underlying chemical


knowledge to interpret observations and/or
measurements and draws basic or superficial
conclusions from recorded observations and/or
measurements.

Makes quite good use of underlying chemical


knowledge to interpret observations and/or
measurements and draws conclusions from
recorded observations and/or measurements
which are in some detail and depth.

Makes comprehensive and effective use of


underlying chemical knowledge to interpret
observations and/or measurements and
draws conclusions from recorded
observations and/or measurements which are
in considerable detail and depth.

1 Mark
Comments briefly and in simple terms on the
limitations of practical procedures.

3 Marks
Comments on some of the key limitations of
practical procedures.
.
Comments in reasonable detail on the
reliability and validity of observations and/or
includes calculations of the uncertainty
associated with measurements that include a
range of different types and are generally
accurate.

6 Marks
Comments on all of the expected limitations
of practical procedures.

Evaluates in reasonable detail the choices


made of materials, equipment and practical
procedures used in the investigation

Fully evaluates the choices made of


materials, equipment and practical
procedures used in the investigation.

Comments briefly and in simple terms on the


reliability and validity of observations and/or
includes calculations of the uncertainty
associated with measurements that are of
limited range or inaccurate.
Comments briefly in descriptive rather than
evaluative terms on the choices made of
materials, equipment and practical procedures
used in the investigation.

Comments in full detail on the reliability and


validity of observations and/or includes
accurate calculations of the uncertainty
associated with all types of measurements
recorded.

` Experimental Error and Error Analysis


Adapted from an article by
A. Thorpe, Chemistry Review, Nov 2001, vol. 11, p.25.
Practical chemistry can involve making all sorts of
measurements. You may have to measure the mass of a
chemical, or the temperature or volume of a solution. Whenever
you make a measurement, there is an experimental uncertainty
associated with the value you record.
This article looks at:

This data can be used to calculate the concentration of HCl =


0.1394 mol dm3

Box 1 - Sorting out the language

the language used by scientists when discussing


measurements (see Box 1)

how to calculate uncertainties

how to identify the most significant uncertainty

The term experimental error is often used in this context but


isn't a particularly helpful phrase as it suggests that you may
have done something wrong. A more appropriate term is
experimental uncertainty (or measurement uncertainty). It is
important to remember that even results obtained by the most
experienced and careful operator will have an experimental
uncertainty associated with them.

how to combine uncertainties

Uncertainties in results can be caused by:

A typical sixth-form experiment


The experiment described below involves a variety of
measurements, all of which have a degree of uncertainty
associated with them. By looking at the procedures that carry
the greatest level of uncertainty, a chemist can start to appreciate
the most important stages in the experiment and concentrate on
ways to minimise the level of uncertainty in the final answer.
A student was given the task of finding the concentration of
a solution of hydrochloric acid, which was thought to be
around 0.15 mol dm-3.

Approximately 1g of sodium hydroxide was accurately


weighed into a weighing boat. This was carefully transferred
into a clean beaker and distilled water was added. The
weighing boat was washed through with distilled water and
the rinsings were transferred to the beaker. Once all of the
solid had dissolved, the solution was transferred into a 250
cm3 volumetric flask. The beaker was washed several times
and each time the rinsings were transferred to the volumetric
flask. After allowing time for cooling to room temperature
(sodium hydroxide dissolves exothermically), the solution was
made up to the calibration mark on the volumetric flask with
distilled water. The flask was stoppered and shaken to ensure
thorough mixing. Next, the student took 25.00 cm 3 samples of
this 'standard solution' of sodium hydroxide and titrated them
against the unknown hydrochloric acid using a suitable
indicator. Several titrations were carried out until concordant
results were obtained. These results are shown in below.

Results
Mass of empty weigh boat =
Mass of weigh boat & NaOH =
Mass of NaOH =

2.03 g
3.07 g
1.04 g

Rough

Titration
1

Titration
2

Titration
3

Initial burette
reading/cm3

0.00

19.05

0.05

18.75

Final burette
reading/cm3

19.05

37.65

18.75

37.40

Titre/cm3

19.05

18.60

18.70

18.65

Average titre of hydrochloric acid = 18.65 cm3

imperfections in the measuring device

imperfections in the experimental procedure

judgements made by the operator

If you repeat a series of measurements and obtain values


which are close together, your results are said to be precise.
Since one person obtained the results, the procedure used
can be described as repeatable. If the same procedure is
carried out by a number of different people and the results
are still close together, the procedure is said to be
reproducible.
If your results are also close to the true value, then they are
said to be accurate.
A systematic error causes a bias in your measurement in
one direction (but always in the same direction). Systematic
errors can be taken into account in your calculation, if you
become aware of them. For example, if a group of students
were all carrying out the same experiment using 25 cm 3
pipettes, but one student accidentally used a 20 cm 3 pipette,
his titres would consistently be lower than those of the rest of
the group. Any calculations done using this student's results
would differ from the rest of the group. However, the student
might realise what he has done and apply a correcting factor,
enabling his results to be compared with those of his friends.
However, it is frequently not possible to detect or quantify a
systematic error.
Random errors occur in all experimental measurements
(however careful or experienced the operator may be) and
are beyond the control of the operator. One can reduce the
effect of random errors by carrying out many repeat
experiments, although this may not always be practical. The
average value from a set of repeat measurements is
generally a better estimate of the true value of the quantity.

Calculating the percentage uncertainties for


each measurement
The information given in box 2 is used to calculate these
uncertainties:
2 decimal place balance =

0.005
1.04

100

= 0.48 %

Grade B burette =

0.10
18.65

100

= 0.54 %

Grade B volumetric flask =

0.15
250

100

= 0.06 %

Grade B pipette =

0.06
25

100

= 0.24 %

The percentage uncertainty on this value is given by the sum of


the percentage uncertainties for each measurement (see Box 2).
% uncertainty in conc.of NaOH =
0.48% + 0.06 = 0.54%
% uncertainty in volume of NaOH = 0.24%
uncertainty in volume of HCI = 0.54%
overall uncertainty = 1.32%
This converts to an absolute uncertainty of
0.1394 x 1.44 100 = 0.002 mol dm3

to weigh out the sodium hydroxide. If an identical mass of


sodium hydroxide were used, the percentage error in the
measurement would drop to 0.048%.
A value for the concentration of the hydrochloric acid has been
obtained, but it may not be accurate {i.e. close to the true
value). Using sodium hydroxide to make a standard solution
could introduce a systematic error into the procedure. This is
because sodium hydroxide absorbs carbon dioxide from the
atmosphere. When weighing out sodium hydroxide, we cannot be
certain about the amount {in moles) of chemical used. An
experienced chemist would probably choose a different substance
{such as anhydrous sodium carbonate, which is much more
stable than sodium hydroxide) when preparing the standard
solution. A good way to check the accuracy of the result from the
above experiment would be to compare the value obtained with
one obtained using a standard solution of sodium carbonate.

So the concentration of HCI = 0.1394 0.002 mol dm3

Significant figures
When you have calculated a value from measured data you
should always consider how many significant figures (sf) to
include in your final answer. Don't just write down all the
figures shown on your calculator display. You should not quote
your final answer to more significant figures than the least
precise value used in the calculation. In this calculation, the least
precise measurement was the mass of sodium hydroxide
(measured to 3sf). Therefore the final answer for the
concentration of the hydrochloric acid should be quoted to three
significant figures, i.e.

However, irrespective of which chemical is used for the standard


solution, random errors cannot be avoided. Judgements about
whether the indicator has changed colour or whether the bottom
of the meniscus is touching the calibration line on the pipette still
have to be made. Other sources of random errors include
temperature variations in glassware and solutions
The accuracy of the final value also depends on the experimental
procedures used. Taking care to transfer all the sodium hydroxide
from the weighing boat to the beaker and transferring the rinsings
from the beaker into the volumetric flask are two examples of
good experimental technique; remembering steps such as these
can have a significant effect on the overall accuracy in the final
value

concentration of hydrochloric acid = 0.139 0.002 mol dm3

Which measurement has the greatest


uncertainty?

This article has introduced you to some of the important ideas in


error analysis. It is as well to remember that however carefully
you may have carried out your experiment, there will always be
some uncertainty associated with your final answer. We don't live
in a perfect world where all measurements are exact!

In this experiment, the percentage uncertainty in measuring the


mass of sodium hydroxide (0.48%) is the greatest. One way to
reduce this uncertainty would be to use a 3 decimal place balance

Box 2 Calculating Uncertainties


The uncertainty in a measurement depends on the precision of the equipment being used to make the measurement. The table below
gives typical measurement uncertainties for some common laboratory equipment, taken from manufacturers literature.
Equipment

Size/grade

Uncertainty value

Balance

3 decimal place

0.000 5 g

2 decimal place

0.005 g

1 decimal place

0.05 g

25 cm Grade A

0.03 cm3

25 cm3 Grade B

0.06 cm3

Measuring cylinder

25 cm3

0.5 cm3

Burette

50 cm3 Grade A

0.06 cm3 (when delivering 25 cm3)

50 cm3 Grade B

0.10 cm3 (when delivering 25 cm3)

250 cm3 Grade B

0.15 cm3

Pipette

Volumetric Flask

For other apparatus, e.g. colorimeters, you will need to find out values by researching.
Finding the percentage uncertainty (commonly called the percentage error) in a measurement allows you to compare uncertainties and
decide which stage of your procedure is likely to introduce the greatest uncertainty. The percentage uncertainty is calculated using the
formula:
Percentage uncertainty =

uncertainty
result

100

Combining Uncertainties
When adding or subtracting measurements, the maximum uncertainty is the sum of the uncertainty values associated with each
individual measurement. For example, if two temperatures are measured as 21.4 C and 31.7 C, 0.05 C, the difference in temperature
is 10.3C, 0.1 C, (i.e. Percentage uncertainty = 0.97%)
When multiplying or dividing measured quantities, the maximum percentage uncertainty is the sum of the percentage uncertainties for
each of the quantities.

Choosing an Investigation
The following list of investigations is not intended to be prescriptive, but should, we hope,
provoke your imagination. You might prefer to think of a suitable investigation for yourself but
make sure that it meets all criteria by talking to an experienced member of the department.
Demand
The exam board has introduced a new marking criteria to recognise that some investigations are more demanding
than others. The exact mark that your project scores on this criteria will be dependant on both the task itself and
how you chose to investigate the problem. Using unfamiliar apparatus or techniques, ideas not within the scope of
the syllabus or resolving problems that arise all contribute to a higher demand score.
I would recommend that students start with a straight-forward task and research additional methods or ideas that
will allow you to extend the investigation to a higher demand.
Each task has been assigned a tariff by the department. This provides a rough guide to the practical complexity
of the investigation. In the case of a kinetics experiment then the more variables you investigate increases the
demand. If you use a chemical clock (the time it takes to change colour, or some other arbitrary event) it is less
demanding than monitoring the reaction continuously. However, monitoring continuously is significantly more
demanding on time. Using chemical ideas that are not on the syllabus, such as determining the activation energy, or
autocatalysis raises the demand.
Demanding tasks are not guaranteed to produce top marks, and over the years over-ambitious students have had
significant difficulties which has led to poor write-ups and low marks. Even if you encounter few difficulties it is
the quality of your procedure and ideas that will ultimately determine the final mark. Low demand task can
frequently be extended to a high demand task; only your planning and write-up will make this possible. Whilst
some projects are more extensively documented in the literature, this will mean that you expected to develop the
project much further than others.

Only one person is allowed to look at any one investigation and they will be allocated on a first-comefirst-served basis.

Selection of Title
In order to gain the highest mark you can achieve and to give us the chance to offer help, it is important
that you work to all deadlines issued. Your teachers will then be able to offer the maximum guidance,
support and advice. Make sure at each stage that you keep in mind the criteria used to mark the
investigation.
Read the whole of the information provided in this pack a second time.

Scope of Project
A.

Determinations: To maximise your marks you should aim to compare two or more different
methods (titration, colorimetric or gravimetric) using a known, pure sample. Evaluate each
method: compare how reliable, accurate, and easy to perform. Try out the method with
real samples; some methods will be better for different samples.

B.

Enzyme Kinetics: Enzymes are notoriously unreliable. Take great care to ensure that this
is written up to using detailed knowledge of A2 Chemistry and that it does not become a

biological investigation. You should expect to determine the order of reaction for each
reagent and consequently the Rate Law. You would attempt to determine the activation
enthalpy by varying temperature, or the enzymes sensitivity to changes in pH, which could
be controlled using buffer solutions. It would be appropriate to relate your discoveries to the
concept of the enzymatic reaction profile.
C.

Chemical Kinetics: Take great care to ensure that this is written up to using detailed
knowledge of A2 Chemistry. You should expect to determine the order of reaction for each
reagent and consequently the Rate Law. You would be expected to determine the activation
enthalpy by varying temperature, and depending on the complexity of the reaction system,
the activation energy of a catalysed system, and how this might affect the overall rate law,
especially for the so called clock reactions. It would be appropriate to relate your
discoveries to the concept of the rate determining step.

D.

Chemical Synthesis: The new criteria make it possible to undertake a chemical synthesis,
either inorganic or organic chemistry. This would require students to synthesis one chemical
under different conditions and record the impact of such a change. Alternatively you could
synthesis a series of related compounds and compare their properties. Another option would
be to undertake a multi-stage synthesis, and purify and analyse the product at each stage.

Notes
1.

Biological organisms take time to respond to changes in their environment, for example metal toxicity in yeast
is about 24 hours.

2. A useful measure of toxicity is the dose required to kill 50% of a population (LD50)
3. Look up appropriate concentrations for your investigations: saturated KMnO4 is about 0.25M,
and frequently produces unreliable or unexpected results.
4. Hydrogen peroxide is supplied as an aqueous solution and measured in volumes. 100vol
H2O2 is about 30% H2O2, and 1cm3 will produce 100cm3 oxygen.
5. Solutions of gases or volatile liquids and hydrogen peroxide have a tendency to go flat;
consideration should be given to ensure that results are reliable throughout the three weeks.
Think about measuring the concentration of your stock solution periodically if it appropriate.
6. Concentrated acids and ammonia do not have constant concentrations; it would be prudent to
measure the concentration of any prepared solution by a titration. Whilst the solution might
not have the exact value that you were aiming for, in most investigations you will be diluting
the solution using a simple ration of acid to water, and so this deviation will not be
significant; unless you have to prepare a second batch of acid at a later date.
7. You will find that you will spend most of the first two weeks, and frequently part of the third
week sorting out problems. This reduces the time available for the gathering of reliable data.
Careful prior planning can considerably increase your productivity; prepare a detailed
schedule with realistic targets for each lesson.
8. At the start of the second and third week you will be expected to give your supervisor a brief,
verbal report of progress to date, supported by a quick analysis of your results you must
plot graphs as soon as you obtain any data.
9. Not everything needs to be measured exactly. Think through your investigation and work out
where you can save time without compromising the quality of your data by using measuring
cylinders and other less accurate measurements. This does show a greater understanding of
the experiment and Chemistry than measuring everything irrespectively.
10. Due to limited supply of equipment some investigations are mutually exclusive. For example,
there is only one conductivity probe and one polarimeter in the department.

I. Possible Title for the


D. investigation

Description

Comments and
references (when
known)

Determinations
1.
M
2.

Preparation and deterioration of


aspirin

Techniques such as tlc, melting point, titration,


hydrolysis followed by titration, colorimetry
can be compared.

Chem. Rev. Vol 6, No.3

What is the percentage of a


particular alloy element in steel?

Some metals interfere and affect


the reliability of the analysis;
how significant is this?

How do the methods used to


follow acid/base reactions
compare?

A similar approach to Activity SS1.1, but


applied to other elements. Check the reliability
of a given technique over a range of known
concentrations. Attempt to use the technique
on a real steel sample.
Methods to be compared could include
titration, pH measurement, conductivity,
temperature change etc.

A Comparison of analytical
techniques for detecting copper
ions

Copper ions can be detected using a wide


range of analytical methods, which is mostly
reliable under which circumstances?

What factors affect the accuracy


of the determination the nickel
content in steel?

The colorimetric analysis of nickel is well


documented, but how can the conditions alter
the accuracy?

SAC II Resource Sheets No.5

Which is the best method for


removing iron oxide from sand?
or
What is the best method for
estimating iron(III) oxide
concentration in sand?

Two methods for removal - acid extraction and


sublimation - can be evaluated.
Two methods of analysis can be compared titration and colorimetric determination.

(2005 project)

What is the stoichiometry of


complex ions?

Colorimetric analysis of the first row


Transition Element complexes with edta (or
other chelating ligand).
Extension to a study of an equilibrium or rate
(e.g. Cr3+ and edta).
Methods such as DCPIP, iodine, potassium
iodate/iodide and N-bromosuccinimide could
be compared using pure vitamin C, before
extension into foodstuffs, drinks, supplements
etc.
Investigate a range of techniques to measure
the Ca2+ concentration and the effectiveness of
methods for softening water.

See comments in TG p. 154.


Requires careful planning to
cover all skills.
SAC II Resource Sheets No.6

M
3.
M
4.
M
5.
H
6.
H

7.
H
8.
M
9.

What is the best method for


determining the concentration of
vitamin C?
Analysis of hard water

Chem. Rev. Vol 5, No.5


SAC II Resource Sheets No.15

SAC II Resource Sheets No.19


& 20 & 32

Enzyme Kinetics
10.
H

11.
H

12.

What effect does the


concentration of a metal ion
have the activity of an enzyme?
Can this be used as a possible
method for analysis of heavy
metal ions in water?

Investigate the effect of transition metal ions


on inhibition. The time taken to for heavy
metal poisoning to take effect on an organism
(yeast hours & days) or determining the LD 50
for various and anions, could be investigated.

What factors affect the activity


of urease?
What are the kinetics of the
urea-urease reaction?

The effect of concentration and temperature


can be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction

Much scope for an able student.


See comments in TG p. 153.
"Biochemistry" Nuffield
Advanced Chem Special Study,
Expt 2.2c

A study of enzyme reactions:


Catalase + H2O2

The kinetics of reactions involving enzymes


can be studied using appropriate techniques.
The effect of changing the substrate and
enzyme concentration, pH and temperature
could be evaluated. Reactions can be followed
by a range of techniques.
See "Some experiments with Enzymes"

O2 volume
(or titration of H2O2 not easy)

H
13.

A study of enzyme reactions:


Invertase + sucrose
H

14.

A study of enzyme reactions.


Amylase + starch

Polarimetry

quantitative Benedicts test (not a


brilliant reagent)

H
15.
H

16.

How can I stop my apple


turning brown? - investigation
into the catalytic effect of
polyphenoloxidase on the
browning of apples.
What are the kinetics of the
lipase hydrolysis of fats/oils

Factors affecting the rate of browning by the


enzyme could be considered. (e.g. find the
order of the reaction and deduce a rate
equation; find the optimum pH and
temperature for the reaction; do metal ions
inhibit the reaction?). Surprisingly difficult
investigation.
The effect of concentration and temperature
can be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction

Chem. Rev. Vol 6, No.4


"Food Science" Nuffield
Advanced Chem. Special Study

SAC II Resource Sheets No.7

Chemical Kinetics
17.
M
18.
H
19.
H
20.
M
21.

What are the kinetics of the


The effect of concentration, temperature and
reaction between
catalytic activity could be studied leading to
manganate(VII) ions and oxalate the order and activation enthalpy of the
ions?
reaction.
What are the kinetics of the
Determination of the order of the reaction and
reaction between potassium
possibly a value for the activation enthalpy.
permanganate and hydrogen
Look at autocatalysis of the reaction
peroxide when catalysed by
Mn2+ ions?
What are the kinetics of the
reaction between iodine and
propanone in acid conditions?

The effect of concentration, temperature and


catalytic activity could be studied leading to
the order and activation enthalpy of the
reaction.

What are the kinetics of the


hydrolysis of esters in alkaline
conditions?

The effect of concentration and temperature


could be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction. Reaction
can be followed by both a titration method or
via conductivity
Factors affecting the kinetics of the aldol
reaction, such as concentration of ethanal and
hydroxide ions, temperature etc. can be
investigated.

An investigation of the
dimerisation of ethanal.
M

SAC II Resource Sheets No.23


Reaction can be followed by
both colorimetry and titration.
Monitor the reaction via
collection of oxygen and titration
methods.
Chem. Rev. Vol 5, No.1
Chem. Rev. Vol 11, No.3
The reaction can be monitored
via colorimetry, or by using a
quenching method followed by
titration.
SAC II Resource Sheets No.26
Rendle, Vokins & Davies
Experimental Chemistry, p129
SAC II Resource Sheets No.7 &
9
SSR Vol 77, Dec. 1995, pp.7882.

22.
M
23.
M
24.
L
25.
H
26.
H
27.
H
28.
L
29.

What are the kinetics of the


decomposition of the Fe3+
thiosulphate complex?
Reaction is catalysed via Cu2+
ions.
What is the effect of fluoride
ions on the kinetics of CaCO3
and acid reaction

The effect of concentration and temperature


could be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction.

Reaction could be followed via


colorimetry.

Care should be taken to ensure that the


practical is developed beyond the GCSE
practical.

SAC II Resource Sheets No.33

What are the kinetics of the


reaction between acid and a
metal (Mg or Zn)?

The effect of concentration, surface area,


temperature and catalytic activity could be
studied leading to the order and activation
enthalpy of the reaction.
The effect of concentration, temperature and
catalytic activity could be studied. The kinetics
could also be studied.

Consider following the reaction


via the concentration of the
metal ion.
SAC II Resource Sheets No.25
CIPW report, 1997,1998

The effect of concentration, temperature and


catalytic activity could be studied leading to
the order and activation enthalpy of the
reaction.
The effect of concentration, temperature and
catalytic activity could be studied leading to
the order and activation enthalpy of the
reaction.
The effect of concentration and temperature
could be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction.

CIPW report, 1999, 2000, 2002


SAC II Resource Sheets No.31

What are the kinetics of the


hydrolysis of sucrose?

The effect of concentration and temperature


could be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction.

Reaction can be followed by


polarimetry

How does cooking affect the


concentration of Vitamin C (rate
of hydrolysis)?

DCPIP could be used to measure the


concentration of Vitamin C and kinetics of
hydrolysis both in vivo and in vitro.

Chem. Rev. Vol 5, No.5

What are the kinetics of the


reaction between sulphite (SO32-)
and iodate ions, - the Landoult
Clock reaction?
What are the kinetics of the
reaction between hydrogen
peroxide and iodide ions in acid
solution?

The effect of concentration and temperature


could be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction.

Clarke & Clynes expt 1.42

The effects of concentration, temperature and


catalysis can be considered. The reactions can
be catalysed by molybdate ions.
Determination of the order of the reaction and
a value for the activation enthalpy.
The effect of reactant concentration,
temperature, addition of suitable catalyst ions
etc could lead to the order of reaction and
activation enthalpy.
This experiment is used extensively as part of
the A Level course, and so much thought
must be put into extending the scope of the
task.
The effect of concentration and temperature
could be studied leading to the order and
activation enthalpy of the reaction. A complex
system, suitable for a more competent chemist.
The effect of concentration, temperature and
solvent could be studied leading to the order
and activation enthalpy of the reaction. A
complex system, suitable for a more competent
chemist

Chem. Rev. Vol 6, No.2


SAC II Resource Sheets No.27

What are the factors that affect


the period of oscillation in the
BZ reaction?
What are the kinetics of the
chemiluminescence of
Luminol ?
What are the kinetics of the
trans-esterification of vegetable
oils to produce bio-diesel?
What are the kinetics of the
oxidation of methanoic acid by
bromine?

M
30.
M
31.
M
32.
M
33.
M

34.

What are the kinetics of the


reaction between iodide and
peroxodisulphate ions when
catalysed by certain cations?
Is catalytic activity affected by
standard electrode potential?
The oxidation of iodide by iron
(III) thiosulphate complex.

H
35.
M

Alkaline hydrolysis of
2-chloro-2-metylpropane

CIPW report, 2002


Follow progress of reaction
using change in viscosity.
Chem in Context, Lab manual:
expt 17

The rate of the reaction can be


determined using thiosulphate
and/or a colorimeter to follow
the rate of production of iodine.
.

B Z Shakhashiri, vol. 4, Ch.10.6

B Z Shakhashiri, vol. 4, Ch.10.7

36.
M
37.
H

What are the kinetics of the acid


catalysed reaction between
bromide and bromate ions?
What are the kinetics of the
reaction between thiosulphate
and hydrogen peroxide,
catalysed by sodium molybdate?

The effect of concentration, temperature and


catalytic activity could be studied leading to
the order and activation enthalpy of the
reaction. The reaction is also affected by ionic
strength and catalysed by the ethanoate ion
The effect of concentration, temperature and
catalytic activity could be studied leading to
the order and activation enthalpy of the
reaction.

Chem Rev., Nov 1996

An extension of Activity SS6.3 to consider


changing the concentration, temperature and
presence of complexing agents on electrode
potentials of simple metal electrodes.
Factors affecting the rate of attaining
equilibrium could be investigated. Analysis of
the equilibrium mixture composition would
allow Kc to be determined. How is Kc affected
by temperature?

SAC II Resource Sheets No.11

Factors affecting the conductivity of ionic


solutions

SAC II Resource Sheets No.1

RSC Classic Demo 12.


Method needs adapting to create
a suitable clock mechanism
using pH change.

Other Ideas
38.

What are the factors affecting


electrode potentials?
M

39.
H

40.

A study of the temperature


dependence of equilibrium
system for various systems,
including:
Ag+ / Fe3+ or CoCl42- /
Co(H2O)62+ or Fe(aq)3+ /
Fe(SCN)2+
Investigating conductivity

Nuffield Advancing Chemistry,


p297.
RSC Classic Demos no.8
G Fowles, p413

L
41.
M
42.

Investigating partition
coefficients for iodine or an
organic acid

Proof that batch extraction of iodine more


efficient than bulk extraction. The effect of the
polarity of solvent on extraction.

Factors affecting the efficiency


of cooling packs

The enthalpy of solution for some salts is


significantly endothermic as well as some
endothermic reactions.

Is the molybdate ion effective as


a catalyst for all reactions with
hydrogen peroxide.

It is known that the molybdate ion is effective


at catalysing reactions involving hydrogen
peroxide (see nos. 32 & 37). Are other
reactions involving hydrogen peroxide
similarly affected?
Investigate Faradays laws of electrolysis and
see how different systems deviate from the
laws through the effect of ligands. Qualitative
observations of the plated surface could also be
made.
First Find hydration enthalpy of anhydrous
and hydrated magnesium sulfate by measuring
the temperature change using an insulated
container. Use a coffee cup method and a
vacuum flask method and choose the most
effective.
Then Extend to a range of other salts to
provide data for comparison and explanation in
terms of the size and charge on ions.
If the charges on the reactants have the same
sign, the activated complex will be more
highly charged than the reactants. Increasing
the ionic strength (ion concentration) of the
solution will tend to stabilise the activated
complex, increasing the rate. Reactions that
might be affected are nos. 17 & 33.
It is reported that sodium chloride and
magnesium chloride alters the rate constant for
this reaction. If so, how?

M
43.
H
44.

Factors affecting electroplating


M

45.

Enthalpies of solutions and


hydration enthalpies of salts
M

46.

Effect of ionic strength on


kinetics. The rate constant of an
ionic reaction depends on the
ionic strength of the solution.

47.

Effect of chloride ions on the


kinetics of Mg + HCl reaction.

Might not be suitable for most


able student

See JPS

See JPS

48.

Partition coefficient of organic


dicarboxylic acids

Determine the partition coefficient for several


dicarboxylic acids with water and 2methylpropan-1-ol and interpret results in
terms of intermolecular bonding.

See JPS

Synthesis

49.
50.

Most will inevitably prove to be High demand as you will


need to research detailed procedures and methods not
normally encountered on the A-Level course.

Multi-step synthesis of an
organic compound, e.g. methyl
orange
Preparation and properties of
double salts

51.

Preparation properties of
isomorphous salts. Certain pairs
of ions will form a salt where the
mole fraction of the salt e.g.
iron(II) magnesium sulphate and
the alum salts.

52.

Preparation of a series of
complexes (same metal different
ligand, or vice visa)
Preparation of inorganic
compounds in less common
oxidation states

53.

Certain pairs of salts will crystallise to form a


double salt of fixed composition. How does
this differ the physical properties of the
constituent salts.
Do the properties of the salt vary directly with
the mole composition of the ions?

How does the frequency of the maximum


absorbance for a complex vary?
The powerful oxidising ferrate(VI) ion, FeO42-,
can be prepared in the lab through various
methods. How does its redox chemistry
compare to that of other strong oxidants?

Opportunity for plenty of


research and use of unusual
chemicals and apparatus.
You will need to pick a theme to
follow so that it does not become
a random collection of crystals
obtained.
Various lab books available from
both individual teachers and the
school and science library

Individual Investigation The Plan


Deadlines

As specified in the Deadlines document

You will effectively hand in your plan three times. Only between the first and second submissions will
significant alterations to the plan be acceptable.
Initial Plan
The more detailed you make the Initial Plan at this stage the easier will everything else follow in time this
will become the basis of the Planning component of the write-up. This document will become the
scaffolding that you will construct the detailed Plan for the final submission. There is no set formula that
needs to be followed, but this should (for your own benefit) be logically presented and prepared to the
standard required for the final assessment. Also, you must include the completed the risk assessment and a
technical support request. During the following week you will need to meet up with your supervisor to
confirm that the details are sound before the technical support request is passed onto Mrs Patani by your
supervisor. At this stage I would anticipate that your initial plan makes it very clear the ideas that you will
explore and the methods you plan to use. You must also include a copy of the most useful reference you
have used in designing your method so we can check that you have interpreted the instructions correctly.
This is the stage at which we will offer you the most guidance; later on as you take ownership of your
project the advice we will offer without prejudice will decrease.
Section 1:
Chemical Ideas
Methods
Communication

identify and describe the aims of the investigation;


describe the chemical knowledge which they have researched in
order to help them devise their plan;
describe the equipment, materials and experimental procedures
they use to achieve the investigation aims;
include a risk assessment;
include a list of references to sources they have consulted to help
them devise their plan.
In all of these, candidates should be careful to use technical terms
correctly and pay careful attention to spelling, punctuation and
grammar.

The following points should be covered at this stage:


Defining the Problem. A brief outline of the task ( page max.)
Appropriate Background Knowledge. A summary that is both informative and logical, clearly showing
an understanding of the appropriate knowledge required for the project. This should cover both the
chemical theory of the reaction(s) being studied and any physical theories that you will use to interpret
your results. This does not need to be an exhaustive textbook piece of work be brief at this stage. More
importantly you should describe, in outline, how you intend to process the data that you obtain; does it
answer the problem. (2 pages should be sufficient at this stage).
Any ideas or facts taken from any source should be duly recognised with a numbered footnote, details of
which should be quoted in the reference section remember how to reference using the technique used for
the open book exam in the L6.

Research is critical at this stage. You must find a reliable starting procedure from a creditable
source, such as an A Level textbook or lab manual, and this will require research. Several
projects each fail to start smoothly as students fail on this critical stage, and spend most of
the first week trying to find out the optimum conditions for their reactions via trial and error.

The Proposed Methods. This should detail the basic chemical procedure in sufficient detail that an
experienced, competent A-Level chemistry student could carry out the experiment and record the required
data. You should also outline how conditions will be varied to gain additional data.
Any solutions that needs to be accurately known (i.e. to be measured out by pipette or burette) must be
prepared by yourself, which you may need to standardise (measure against a known pure chemical). We
can provide typical lab reagents, 2M acids, 0.1M metal salts, for general work (measured out in a measuring
cylinder). At this stage we dont need to be instructed on how to carry out routine activities such as: making
up solutions, titrations or setting up apparatus. (1 - 2 pages).
The Risk Assessment. This must be prepared to the standard required in the final report. It should describe
the hazards appropriate and the precautions required at each stage, both in terms of the activity and
chemical hazards. Take care to distinguish between the hazards of different chemicals at different stages; it
might be appropriate to wear gloves and avoid the dust when handling an irritant powder, but you would be
unlikely to continue to treat the 0.1M solution with the same precautions. You would be expected to follow
your risk assessment, (you might regret the decision to wear breathing apparatus and a face shield for a
titration!). A detailed risk assessment might take several pages.
Technical Support Request. This should detail the approximate quantity of chemicals that you require.
We expect you to make a realistic estimate. This will require you as part of you plan to calculate how much
of each chemical you require, find out if we hold it in stock, and if it requires ordering, the cost of the
chemical. For example, if you choose to investigate the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide with the pure
enzyme catalase we will provide you with 25 worth of the enzyme, about 10 g. Similarly, many students
assume that 1.0M is quite dilute and that there are no problems with making a 5.0 M solution of potassium
mangante (VII). In reality saturated KMnO 4 is about 0.25M, and most reactions involving its use are in the
region of 0.02M, or less. Research is critical at this stage to ensure that the choices of concentrations that
you make are both attainable and realistic.
You must evaluate your plan before handing your work in (no writing required). This document will be
your working plan that you will use (initially at least). Are you confident that the experiments will give you
sufficient accurate and detailed data for you to process in the manner described?
Submission of Plan
Friday before practical phase starts in November
The final version of your plan must be submitted before you start work. You will not be allowed to conduct
any experimental work until it is handed in. This should be in sufficient detail that it is suitable for final
assessment, the chemical ideas should be written to a standard appropriate to a student studying chemistry
in the U6 and the procedures detailed enough that another student could follow your method and obtain the
same results. You will be permitted to submit a final version of the Plan after the practical phase is
completed. However, this should only include alterations that arose due to problems with the initial
procedure or ideas developing as the investigation progressed. As a rule, the more detailed the plan was
before you started the more leeway is permitted on the redraft.

Technical Support Request


Name:

Investigation Title:
Laboratory Techniques/methods used:

Equipment required:
(not apparatus normally found in the laboratory)

Name

Chemical Hazards

Quantity

Cost

(mass for solids, volume for


liquids look up how it is
supplied)

(Required if the
chemical is not in
stock)

Request approved by supervisor: ..


Request approved by HoD: .

INVESTIGATION RISK ASSESSMENT


Name:

Investigation Title:
.
A written Risk Assessment MUST be shown to your teacher before starting any practical work. Each aspect of your
investigation must be covered. Additional sheets may be required.

Activity or operation
Procedural Hazards

Procedural Risks

Chemical Hazards

Chemical Risks

Those at risk
Control measures

Emergency action

Remaining risks
References

Risk Assessment approved by supervisor: ..