Laboratory Experiment

Laboratory Experiment

About the Laboratory Experiments in Applied Chemistry Course (Function Class)

You can acquire every essential skills necessary in chemistry experiments.

   In “Chemistry”, which is an area of studying the properties and changes of substances on the atomic and molecular level, “experiment” is an important element which supports the foundation of the academic field in more than any other fields of natural science. Its importance has not changed from dawn of chemistry in the 19th century to the present day in which it continues to progress as “Materials Science” through which nanotechnology and biotechnology are developed. Innovative technologies and groundbreaking discoveries which grace Nobel prizes which solve energy and environmental issues are all produced by the daily experiments carried out by university and corporate researchers. 

   Extensive knowledge and experimental technologies are required to conduct advanced research of modern materials science from applied physics to biotechnology and computational science in addition to traditional sciences such as organic, inorganic, analysis and high polymer.

   In order to respond to such academic and social demands, the Function Class has been engaged in Materials Science and Engineering Experiments (1st - 3rd), positioning them as “the most important foundation of the educational curriculum” just as in the case of lecture courses. 
In Materials Science and Engineering Experiments (1st - 3rd), the basic knowledge of each field of Materials Science which is studied in lectures in the second and third years is perceived in depth through experiments and practical training based on the integral experiments of natural science which are practiced as the coursework for the whole school in the first semester in the second year. The curriculum for the experiments has been designed so that the knowledge and basics of experimental techniques required for conducting “advanced research” as the final year’s research are sufficiently acquired by the time the third year is completed by raising the level of expertise gradually from the 1st stage to the 3rd stage.

   Some of you may feel that a year and a half of experiments and practical training is too long. However, the 1st and 2nd stages from the second semester in the second year to the first semester in the third year are composed of standard practical training and hours as the science and technology undergraduate course’s chemistry experiment curriculum for the year in order to acquire the basic experimental techniques of materials science (organic, inorganic, analysis, high polymer, computation) in a balanced manner.

   Furthermore, the Function Class features student experiments which are closer to advanced research which are conducted in two research laboratories of different fields in the second semester in the third year. This provides a valuable opportunity for students to think specifically and with real sense about their final year’s research and future prospects through experiencing the scenes of advanced research in two different fields.

Messages from alumni

Q. What were the reasons you chose the Function Class as your “first choice” in deciding on a course?

・Applied chemistry is linked to various fields including physics, biology and environmental science and I believed that in the Function Class, I could gain a more extensive knowledge which is directly linked to those fields than just the field of chemistry. 

・I like chemistry experiments and wanted to choose applied chemistry. Function had the image of placing importance on assessment by synthesis. 

・I enrolled in university to study. I thought that the Function Class has a high level of research activities with research laboratories which have extensive areas of research compared to other classes and that I could learn many things.

・Because it has a wide range of research fields such as materials, inorganic, organic and optical science . When I had to decide on a career option, I was only in my first year and had no idea about the future. I chose a field which offered extensive choices and took time to consider my future. 

・I was attracted by the fact that it offers a wide range of fields in one course such as inorganic, organic, analysis, theoretical calculation biochemistry and high polymer. I was able to think carefully when actually made a choice of which research laboratory to sign up with.

Q. Many have commented that the student experiments of the Function Class are “difficult for the amount of experiments due to the wide range of fields”. Was it just difficult for you?

・It was great for I was able to conduct experiments in fields which I had no experience in. I think I was able to find the fascination of a field which I had no interest in through the experiments. I was also able to develop friendships by collaborating with everyone in the Function Class through the experiments. 

・Looking back on it now that I am an MA, I think the extensive knowledge and techniques gained from the student experiments are serving as my foundation today. 

・As it offers student experiments in a wide range of fields such as organic, inorganic and analysis and as each student experiment includes consultation and report, it enables you to gain basic knowledge outside the research laboratory you may join in the future. 

・I cannot compare it to other courses, but the experiments conducted in the Function Class have the characteristics of being 1. Full and extensive, 2. Having many kind and interesting TAs, and 3. Enabling students to form friendships with everyone in the Class. 

・The coursework may be difficult compared to other courses. However, I am glad I was able to conduct experiments in each research laboratory as I believe such experience will certainly be utilized.

Q. Describe freely about the advantages of the Function Class which you would like to appeal

・You can job hunt without limiting your fields too much. Although the time spent on experiments is long, the students can become friends easily. 

・You may find that it is hard work sometimes but you will find more joy and fun. I do not think you can get this feeling anywhere else. I have joined a research laboratory and have started experiments on a full scale and am enjoying a fulfilling life. I think even someone who has not decided on what they want to do yet will find what they want in the Function Class. 

・(To students looking for employment) I think it is very good for getting a job. Although the research activities are hard, since the workplace is likely to be stricter, I am sure you will be able to cope better once you get a job if you train yourself properly while you are a student. (To students wishing to conduct research) The instructors of each research laboratory are very passionate about research and since the facilities are fully equipped, it is a great environment for research. 

・In the final year’s research presentation and graduate school consultation, you have to give a presentation to people from a wide range of fields in Function. This experience is very useful when you go to job interviews. 

・I think it is very clear how the research themes are being used in the Function Class. Therefore, the Function Class is best for those who wish to have their ideas spread around the world or used by many people.

You can check the entire survey text that collected in July 2007 (only in Japanese) from the link given below.