Graphene is a novel material with extraordinary promise in various nano-based applications including increases in strength, conductivity, filtration, and electrical capacity. Graphene can be synthesized and tested in a wide variety of applications in secondary or undergraduate settings. Allowing students to choose their own application and method of testing the graphene they synthesize is an engaging and authentic project based on engineering design and grounded in the tenets of constructivism.

One of the many possible applications, reinforcement of paper mache by graphene, is easily adapted, uses familiar materials and methods, is cheap, and is easy to test. This student-centered project has led to increases in student content knowledge and lab skills. It increases student confidence with designing their own solutions, analyzing data, and using scientific inquiry and engineering design.



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