Calculating Oxide Weight Percents from Formulae and Normalizing Chemical Analyses
This exercise involves converting chemical analyses to mineral formulas, and mineral formulas to oxide and element weight percents.
This exercise is designed for a mid/upper-level undergraduate geology course on the principles of mineralogy.
Skills and concepts that students must have mastered
Students should have knowledge of basic chemistry and of minerals equivalent to what they would learn in an introductory geology class.
How the activity is situated in the course
This activity is the 2nd of 36 mineralogy exercises and is used at the beginning of the course.
Content/concepts goals for this activity
- Be able to convert between such things as moles and grams.
Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity
- Be able to apply basic chemical principles.
- Carry out simple mathematic problems.
Other skills goals for this activity
Description of the activity/assignment
This short exercise refreshes students memories about converting chemical analyses to mineral formulas, and mineral formulas to oxide and element weight percents.
- Students convert between formulae and weight percents, showing all work.
- The problem set handout has enough introductory material for students to be able to complete the problems without any instructor lecturing or textbook reading.
Determining whether students have met the goals
See that the students have correctly converted everything in the problem set.
Download teaching materials and tips
- Answers to Problems (Acrobat (PDF) 12kB Jul7 05)