We help students see the connection between college level chemistry course work and their differential equations coursework. We do this through modeling kinetics, or rates of chemical reaction. We offer many opportunities to model these chemical reactions with data, some of which comes from traditional introductory chemistry textbooks. We ask students to verify their model through parameter estimation. We use Excel’s Trendline addition to graphs/charts to select the models for the data and transformed data to take advantage of Trendline’s set function choices and we also use Mathematica’s direct nonlinear fitting capabilities.
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