Chem Lab C

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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by Phenylethylamine » February 2nd, 2012, 6:27 pm

anmlee wrote:1. My friend said that when she did the event last year, the event was basically about doing an experiment (?). Apparently, the supervisors gave each group a packet, which told them to do certain procedures (i.e. titration), and she and her partner had to do it without any specific instructions on how to do it. In other words, they had to know and understand how to do experiments. I was wondering if this was true for the Southern California competitions?
I wouldn't know anything about Southern California competitions, but this is very much what the New York State competition is like (or at least, was like last year). Being familiar with common lab procedures and tasks would be very useful.
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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by chem_kid20 » February 19th, 2012, 8:46 pm

Do you think the regional tests will cover more of REDOX reactions, periodic trends, or electrochemistry? I'm struggling to learn this electrochemistry for the competition in a week!

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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by Skink » February 19th, 2012, 9:13 pm

Understanding redox is the basis for electrochemistry, so I don't know how you could do one without the other. I would start at the beginning with the reactions and work into the electrochem business afterwards.

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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by bandgeek165 » March 11th, 2012, 7:26 pm

For the Chem Lab event, hypothetically, could an AP Chem student get by just with what they already know about chemistry? From reading over the rules sheet it sounds like most of it is basic chem skills and my partner has basically explained the event as such. I'm a junior and this is my first year ever doing Science Olympiad and I'm just trying to figure everything out. Opinions? Advice? Thanks!

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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by EastStroudsburg13 » March 12th, 2012, 6:51 am

Generally, a student who has completed AP Chem should be able to get by with that knowledge. However, it is very helpful to review everything, because some of the stuff, especially redox, can be easy to forget.
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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by Phenylethylamine » March 12th, 2012, 4:29 pm

bandgeek165 wrote:For the Chem Lab event, hypothetically, could an AP Chem student get by just with what they already know about chemistry? From reading over the rules sheet it sounds like most of it is basic chem skills and my partner has basically explained the event as such. I'm a junior and this is my first year ever doing Science Olympiad and I'm just trying to figure everything out. Opinions? Advice? Thanks!
Depending on the competition and the event writer, this event can require anywhere from zero practical lab knowledge to far, far more than you'd get from a typical AP Chem course (more on par with an undergrad honors chem course). As far as the test questions, standard AP Chem knowledge is just fine, but for some of the labs, you'll need a better knowledge of various lab equipment, common reactions, and general lab procedure than most AP Chem students have.
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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by Mathc314 » March 18th, 2012, 4:33 pm

This is my first year doing Chem Lab. However, my older brother has done it the past two years at states and nationals, so I do have some idea of what it will be like.
So my question is:
When it says tasks will be taken from the following, does that mean that those are the only possible electrochem labs we could be given, or should i practice other common labs in addition to those on the sheet?
Thanks in advance!
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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by Phenylethylamine » March 18th, 2012, 6:05 pm

Mathc314 wrote:This is my first year doing Chem Lab. However, my older brother has done it the past two years at states and nationals, so I do have some idea of what it will be like.
So my question is:
When it says tasks will be taken from the following, does that mean that those are the only possible electrochem labs we could be given, or should i practice other common labs in addition to those on the sheet?
Thanks in advance!
While I've only ever seen labs that came off the list, I've only competed in Chem Lab a few times, so I'm not exactly an authority there. However, from what I have seen, even when they give you a lab off the list, it's not always presented the way you expect it to be, and may require you to use lab skills that you didn't necessarily expect.

For example, at NY States last year, we had a Beer's Law lab (looking at absorbance to determine concentration, using a spectrophotometer), which we expected. However, what we didn't expect was that they made us make up all our own solutions for the curve... but only gave us one beaker, one graduated cylinder, and one cuvette, so we had to make each concentration of the solution by doing a dilution on the previous one. The hard part of that event was not the spectrophotometry, or even making the curve and determining the concentration of the unknown; it was doing the dilutions (of course, it didn't help that we somehow ended up with a defective pipette bulb, and we didn't know enough about how to use the bulb to be certain that it wasn't just us doing something wrong, so it took forever to measure out the volume of water each time).
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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by pihi » March 19th, 2012, 8:17 pm

Is it possible to be doing this event and taking Chem AP at the same time? Or would it be better to just wait one more year?
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Re: Chem Lab C

Post by Phenylethylamine » March 20th, 2012, 3:27 am

pihi wrote:Is it possible to be doing this event and taking Chem AP at the same time? Or would it be better to just wait one more year?
I did this event before taking AP Chem and while taking AP Chem, and the only thing I recommend is that if you haven't yet done a significant amount of lab work in your AP Chem class, ask your teacher to work with you outside of class on lab skills (based on the list in the rules, but also just general things like proper measuring procedures, how to use common equipment, etc). If you're 2/3 of the way through the class and you've been consistently doing labs in class, you'll probably be fine.

If you haven't gotten to the specific topics for this year's event in class yet, that should not be a problem as long as you can get the notes for those topics (or whatever materials your teacher uses) from your teacher in advance. The event isn't totally based on AP Chem, it just happens to have some significant overlap.
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