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Peer Review

ComSpec3D - VRML Visualization of Raman and Infrared Spectra of Molecules



Overall Rating:

4 stars
Content Quality: 4 stars
Effectiveness: 5 stars
Ease of Use: 4 stars
Reviewed: Nov 16, 2001 by Chemistry Editorial Board
Overview: This is a wonderful integration of structure with normal mode analysis, useful for the organic spectroscopy class and P.Chem. spectroscopy class. It will be a VERY powerful tool in the hands of organic teaching faculty and researchers alike.
Learning Goals: Simulation of spectra and visualize normal modes
Target Student Population: Organic and Physical Chemistry Students
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Some knowledge of normal modes of vibration and IR and Raman spectra.
Type of Material: Simulation for Lecture/Presentation
Technical Requirements: Requires COSMOPLAYER plug in.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4 stars
Strengths: IR and RAMAN spectra BOTH calculated. Visualization of individual vibrational modes is an outstanding feature.
IR and Raman spectra are quickly displayed for the molecule that you build.
Concerns: IR peaks should go from the top to the bottom, not the other way around.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: This tool has the potential for helping students learn about IR and Raman spectra if additional instruction is provided.
Concerns: There should be the option of displaying two spectra at same time in order to make comparisons. Students using this tool will not learn the difference between IR and Raman spectra.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4 stars
Strengths: Interface is realtively easy to use, once youi get the hang of it.
Concerns: There is no back button when a users clicks-on the question marks on the first page and is sent to a different page - it is the same information page that all of the question marks link to. I had trouble building some simple molecules. A warning should be posted alterting users to the fact that a special plug-in(s) is(are) required to view vbrations. Clicking on the wave numbers brings up the plug-in alter message. The user is sent to the Netscape plu-in window, but there are no suggested plug-ins listed.