Student Research in Chemistry

At W&J, students can conduct research either on-campus under the supervision of a W&J faculty research director, or off-campus under the supervision of a director from a sponsoring agency or institution.

On-campus research is carried out in the form of Independent Study projects during the fall or spring semesters. The student receives academic credit for the work, which culminates in a research paper and seminar. Off-campus research is typically the result of a student being accepted into a competitive summer research program sponsored by government agencies, industrial firms, and research universities.

Students interested in research should talk with members of the chemistry faculty about their research interests. They can then either work on a project that the faculty member has available, or propose their own idea, working with a faculty member whose expertise most closely matches the student's research interests.

An Independent Study project requires the following:

  • A 1-2 page proposal describing the project
  • A minimum of 12 hours per week in the lab
  • A descriptive lab notebook
  • A research paper
  • A research presentation

Students have completed research in the following areas:

  • Stability of DNA Complexes
  • Biodiesel Preparation and Characterization
  • Synthesis of Natural Materials
  • Polymer Nanostructures
  • Refinement of Crystalline Structures of Pharmaceutical Compounds
  • Synthesis of Liquid Crystals
  • Art Conservation
  • Solid State Synthesis
  • Analysis of Components in Beer Brewing
  • Lipid Bilayer Formation
  • Nanoparticle Coating and Modification
  • Investigating Water Pollution

Students who do research can also consider completing an Honors Project in order to graduate with honors within a particular area of study.