Contact Information

  • Anne E. Marteel-Parrish
  • Asst. Professor
  • Chemistry
  • Washington College
  • 300 Washington Avenue
  • Chestertown, MD 21620
(800) 422-1782, ext. 7795

Toward the Greening of Our Minds: A New Special Topics Course

Module (PDF)

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A special topics course on "Towards the Greening of Our minds" is offered every other spring at Washington College. This course is designed for science majors who have taken general and organic chemistry and are interested in the future of the planet. The ultimate goal of the class is for students to use green chemistry as a way to critically evaluate environmental policy. Over the course of the semester students will also be able to enhance their writing and oral presentation skills.

The semester long course is divided into five sections.

1)Foundations of Chemistry: Consists of background material and definitions. 2)Applications in Academia and Industry: Students pick real-life examples that interest them and present them to the class. 3)Individual Writing Assignment and Oral Presentation: The Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award is used as the focus of a paper and presentation. 4)Progress in Developing Countries: Discussions and proposals center on the work of Michael McDonough and Michael Braungart (Cradle to Cradle). 5)Team Mini-Proposal: Students pair up and prepare a 20 minute presentation and write a miniature proposal covering a green chemistry topic.

Supplemental Information includes a list of proposal examples by previous students, student handouts and evaluation forms.

Summary prepared October 2008 by Douglas M. Young at the University of Oregon.


Marteel-Parrish, A. E. J. Chem. Educ., Print 2007, 84, pp 245-247.

J. Chem. Educ. (Abstract only)

Category Descriptors

Green Chemistry Principles
  • Analyze in Real-Time to Prevent Pollution
  • Avoid Chemical Derivatives
  • Design for Degradation
  • Design Less Hazardous Chemical Syntheses
  • Design Safer Chemicals and Products
  • Increase Energy Efficiency
  • Maximize Atom Economy
  • Minimize the Potential for Accidents
  • Prevent Waste
  • Use Catalysts
  • Use Renewable Feedstocks
  • Use Safer Solvents/Reaction Conditions
Chemistry Subdiscipline
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary
  • Materials Science
  • Nanotechnology (Chemistry Subdiscipline)
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Polymer Chemistry
Target Audience
  • Colleges/Universities
  • Journal Articles