2017-18 InSciTE Activities

You may be unsure of what you want to study or perhaps you know exactly what you want to do, either way, InSciTE can be for you. 

InSciTE benefits
2017-2018 Activities 
Small cohort and class size   Weekend trip to Jasper, AB
Get to know your professors (Not only do you gain confidence but knowing your profs is great for reference letters)  Forensic analysis unit (finger print, bite marks, blood splatter, ink analyses)
 Explore topics not normally covered in first year  Interview a researcher in the faculty
 Participate in cool field trips (on and off campus)  Discovery-based labs (examine Edmonton's water quality, make hand warmers...)
 Learn to 3D print  3D print project (this year students made a Rube Goldberg machine, see it on Instagram @ualbertascience
 Pick and design your own research experiment Capstone project; execute your own research experiment

What are our 2018 students up to? Check out the following 4 Capstone projects...

Laura - "Do the different casings on a Tylenol pill affect the rate of dissolution?"

Laura chose to test two types of casings, Rapid Release gels and caplets.  The hypothesis is that the Rapid Release gels will dissolve first because the small holes in the casing will allow the medication to be administered almost immediately. The caplet will dissolve the second fastest because there is almost no casing on it, but the powder is compactly pressed. Laura's goal is to see if her hypothesis is correct!

Hayley - "How does water acidity affect the mass of salt crystal growth?"
The hypothesis is that if the solution has a high acidity, then the salt crystal growth will weigh less, because the addition of acid to the water will create a chemical reaction that will prevent some (or potentially all) of the Na+ and Cl- ions initially present from recrystallizing out of the solution, as they will form alternate molecules (sodium acetate and hydrochloric acid) instead of sodium chloride.

If Hayley's hypothesis is supported, then the solution with the highest concentration of vinegar should produce crystals with the lowest weight, and the solution of pure water should produce the crystals with the highest weight.

Luke - "Which brand of antacid, Tums or Rolaids, is more effective at raising the pH of stomach acid?"

Heartburn or acid reflux, is common condition that affects millions of people. Stomach acid, which is highly acidic with a pH of 2, splashes up the esophagus, which is usually around a neutral pH of 7, causing damage to the “food pipe”. The most common solution for someone experiencing such symptoms, is to consume an antacid to try to raise the pH of stomach acid. 

Two of the largest brands with similar prices, strengths, dosage sizes and composition are Tums® Regular Strength and Rolaids® Regular Strength. However, which is the most effective and worth it for the consumer? By creating a stomach acid-like solution with a pH of 2 and salt, Luke's investigation will look into which brand is more effective, per gram, at raising the solution to a safe pH of 4.



Zain - "Which colour of light is most effective in photosynthesis?"

Spinach leaves are green because the nitrogen in chlorophyll produces a green color, meaning green light is reflected, not absorbed. Thus, green light is ineffective in photosynthesis and would actually cause a buildup of carbon dioxide in a sealed environment because the photons are not being taken in.

The hypothesis is if blue light is shone on the leaf, there will be a greater rate of photosynthesis because chlorophyll b absorbs light significantly at the 400-500nm range and blue light has a shorter wavelength (thus more energy) versus red light. Zain hopes to confirm his hypothesis in his research experiment.