Yes, there are some widely differing views on what green chemistry is and how it should be implemented, taught, etc. This was one of the reasons we began thinking about the roadmap. Through the roadmap there is the opportunity to define shared learning outcomes further "upstream" - to define a shared understanding of green chemistry education outcomes are and how they are to be evaluated, rather than evaluating after the fact.
I’m not sure if this is a question or a comment but when I read the 2015 CPT “Guidelines and Evaluation Procedures for Bachelor’s Degree
Programs” I find the word “green” appearing only twice: on page 12 with regard to integrating green/sustainable chemistry into advanced courses, and on page 19 in Section 7.6 about ethics. (“Green” appeared once in the 2008 Guidelines and not at all in 2003.) What appears in
the Guidelines at the time of each revision is challenging and sometimes (always?) contentious. While the CPT Guidelines are not mandatory for all chemistry programs and approved departments cooperate with the Guidelines on an honor system, they nonetheless represent “best
practices” in the field of chemical education. I suggest that if we want green chemistry to appear in chemistry curricula in some pervasive manner that represents a culture shift toward green and sustainable chemistry, various groups who support such an initiative should start to gather the voices and data that can lobby the CPT about two years in advance of the next revision to ensure that green chemistry takes a rightful place in the chemistry curriculum. To me, “rightful place” means that green chemistry should be embedded in all (“lecture”) courses and lab courses. If our long-term goal is that “all chemistry is green chemistry”, how can it be otherwise than this pervasive effort? The safety community lobbied the CPT pretty hard prior to the 2015 revision and I can tell you that there was a quantum leap in the safety criteria in the 2015 Guidelines. For example, the word “should” was frequently replaced by “must” and this statement appears: “The promotion of safety awareness and skill must begin during the first laboratory experience and should be incorporated into each lab experience thereafter.” Would we not want a similar statement about green chemistry in the next revision?
Our school of engineering houses a center for engineering education; it was this center that first pitched the notion of flipping classes (to keep Pitt at the cutting edge in education), and then approached the Dean’s office for support while also recruiting faculty “guinea pigs’ to try out the new techniques.
Developing the roadmap is an iterative process and, shortly after the workshop in June, a draft will be circulated for comment. Roadmaps are living documents and it is anticipated that updates will be made on a continuous basis. The initial version of the roadmap is expected to be available by year end.
Yes, the ACS Committee on Professional Training is an important stakeholder for the roadmap. It is important to engage CPT in the development of the roadmap. There is also a great opportunity create greater clarity about the core competencies that we could collectively "lobby" for in future guidelines developed by CPT.
There are concepts and ideas in the core competency sub-bullets I don’t even understand why they are there. Are they meant to be an exhaustive list? How are you deciding what belongs here?
The "multi-disciplinarity" issue is very important. This crosses outside of chemistry to toxicology and then beyond the sciences into the realms of compliance, business and marketing for brand owners and manufacturers. And the further downstream you get from the chemical enterprise the more challenging this becomes. Having a pool of graduates with exposure to how to think about problems from a range of different disciplinary perspectives is becoming increasingly important.
By coordinating efforts through the roadmap, the barriers to develop and adopt new materials should be reduced. It has been difficult to keep track of all the different approaches. The development and implementation of the roadmap will provide more opportunities to align with and leverage the work of others.
The bullets are simply meant to be examples at this time; this list will continue to be fleshed out as the roadmapping exercise continues.
I couldn't agree more. Further, this can be one of the hardest things to accomplish as an educator in either a chemistry or chemical engineering department; bringing together students from a range of disciplines to work on the challenging problems that one might encounter as part of the modern chemical enterprise.