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EXPERIMENTAL RESEARCH FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES: INTRODUCTION TO PRACTICAL ASPECTS OF SEPARATION TECHNIQUES

One of the most important concerns of the current university educational systems is guarantee that students not only tackle the study of theoretical concepts but also deal with practice classes that allow them to apply the concepts previously acquired during the master sessions. This type of strategic provides the students a clear view of the role that they will carry out during the development of their professional activity as graduates and how focus the resolution of real problems in his/her day-to-day at work.

This aspect is especially relevant in experimental degrees as Chemistry in which the use of practice classes is a fundamental pedagogical approach to consolidate the comprehension of theoretical concepts as well as enhance the practical skills of the students in the laboratory. However, practice sessions usually applied during the degree are commonly excessively guided to obtain final target results. This aspect hinder that the students address real circumstances frequently present in the laboratory or focus the resolution of the problem from a logical point of view, taking into account the studied theoretical concepts.

In this work and alternative pedagogical approach is proposed to introduce the students in the field of separation techniques, reinforcing their knowledge in such area and offering them the possibility of designing and developing a new analytical methodology based on a reasoned decision-making, supported by the obtained experimental results. In this sense, the propose procedure involves the familiarisation with a novel extraction procedure, widely applied in this field, as well as a liquid chromatographic system by the selection and establishment of the best conditions to operate using both techniques. In addition, once developed the methodology, the student should carry out its analytical validation as well as assess its applicability to determine a group of compounds in real samples of interest.