This document is my first assignment for CHE 352: Chemical Engineering Lab I. The work is being performed under Professor Veronica Burrows during the spring semester of 2018 at Arizona State University. I believe that this assignment will serve to teach me the skills needed to be successful in this course as well as future course required to complete my chemical engineering degree. These skills include writing at a professional level, following strict formatting guidelines, creating charts and plots needed for scientific writing, using library and online recourses, and correctly citing information used in reports to avoid plagiarism. These are all skills that I will need to learn to be successful in the chemical engineering field once I graduate.
Going into this class, I am nervous about the time commitment it is going to require. I have heard from many previous students that this is one of the most time-consuming courses in the chemical engineering program. As I look at the requirements for this assignment, I am a little nervous due to the detail required to successfully complete the assignment. One weakness that I struggle with the most is time management. I believe that this assignment will help me learn to start assignments early and to work on them for small amounts of time over the course of multiple days. Due to the amount of detail that must go into the formatting of this assignment, if I try to do it all at the last minute I will most likely overlook some of the details. It will also cause my level of work to be lower than expected. Another weakness I struggle with is writing at a professional level. I have written many lab reports before, but I feel like the standards for our writing are going to be much higher in this class. I believe that this assignment will be great practice for me to learn to write at the level required for the future assignments and the lab reports in this class.
I also feel like I have some strengths that I will be able to draw upon for this assignment. I have taken many classes that have required the use of Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel. I have had a lot of practice creating tables and graphs in these programs, so hopefully that will be useful to me in part one of this assignment. I know that every class has different formatting guidelines, so I need to be sure that I am formatting all my data as outlined in this assignment. Another strength that I can draw upon for this assignment is my knowledge of plagiarism and citing sources. Throughout my past courses in college, I feel like I have learned a lot about plagiarism. There have been many times where I was required to do research for my assignments and cite my sources properly to avoid plagiarism. I am very familiar with MLA and APA, but ACS is new to me. If I research the guidelines required for ACS, I believe that my background with MLA and APA will help aid me in this assignment.
Even though this assignment will not be perfect, it will serve as a learning tool for the rest of the assignments in this class. Through the completion of this assignment, I hope that formatting future assignments will be much easier for me. I tend to struggle with tedious work, but I believe that once I am done with this assignment, all the small details won’t seem so difficult. When it comes to writing my lab reports, I believe that this assignment will have prepared me to easily create tables and plots. This will allow me to put more of my focus into my analysis and my technical writing. I also believe that it will prepare me to do research and to correctly cite sources in my report. Through this assignment, I believe that I will learn about new resources that I can use for my lab reports that I have never used before in previous courses. I hope that as this course goes on, my assignments will continually improve until I have reached the standards that Professor Burrows expects of us.
Even though this assignment seems tedious and time consuming, I believe that it fits into a much bigger picture. Not only will this assignment help me be successful in this course and future courses, it will also help me be successful in the chemical engineering industry when I graduate. Every company is going to have their own requirements that their employees must follow when completing their work. Once I graduate and I am in the industry, I am going to have to be able to adapt to meet the requirements that the company that I am working for requires. There most likely be times where the work that I am doing may seem tedious, but it will be important that I can see the bigger picture and complete my work to the standards of the company. I believe that following the strict formatting required in this assignment will better prepare me to deal with those situations once I am in the industry.