Extraction on Paper, an Active Learning Technique to Facilitate Student Understanding of Liquid-Liquid Extraction

Undergraduate students often find it difficult to understand the chemical principles underlying liquid-liquid extractions. Explanations on how extractions work at the molecular level in textbook and internet resources are plentiful, but students still do not seem able to grasp how extractions work before having to perform the technique in a laboratory course. To address this difficulty in understanding, we developed an Extraction on Paper Activity. We envision this activity as a tool to help students understand and apply the chemical principles underlying liquid-liquid extractions outside of and before entering into a laboratory setting.