Research Interests


Brief History

I am currently a Professor of Chemistry in the Centre for Chemical Sciences, School of Earth, Ocean and Environmental Sciences at the University of Plymouth. I obtained my BSc in Chemistry from the University of York, U.K. in 1985 and my DPhil from the same university in 1988 (Professor Robin Perutz) receiving the Kathleen Mary Stott award. Following post-doctoral terms as an SERC/NATO Fellow at the Universities of California, U.S.A. and Ottawa, Canada, I returned to the U.K. in September 1993 and took up the position of Lecturer in Environmental Chemistry at the University of Plymouth. I was appointed to Senior Lecturer in September 1997, to Principal Lecturer in September 1999 and to Professor in September 2005.

My research interests focus on applications of environmental organic chemistry and chemical education. For the former, I am currently using a multi-proxy approach to reconstruct polar sea ice records for the Holocene period. This work is funded by the NERC in the UK, and I am also a member of the ArcticNet and CFL projects which are based in Canada. In 1996, I was a recipient of a RSC JWT Jones Travelling Fellowship to Ottawa, Canada and, in 2001, I received a further fellowship to visit the University of Nantes, France. In 2003, I received the Higher Education Teaching Award from the Royal Society of Chemistry and was given the Chemical Synthesis Services award for teaching in 2005. In 2007, I was awarded a BA Media Fellowship, spending time with BBC Horizon and the Royal Society and writing articles ("Nano Stores the Planet", "Public Perspectives on Research" and "Watery Secrets") at the BA Festival of Science meeting at the University of York. I was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship by the Higher Education Academy in 2010.

I have received grants from The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), The Royal Society, The European Social Fund, The Higher Education Academy, The British Council, The LGC, HEFCE, SERC, The Seale Hayne Educational Trust and The University of Plymouth.

I am a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and of the Higher Education Academy, and a member of the NERC Peer Review College (2008-2011), the Royal Society of Chemistry Tertiary Education Group Committee and the Advisory Group for the HEA Physical Sciences Subject Centre.


Teaching and Learning

I use a Context/Problem Based Learning (C/PBL) approach to my teaching which covers mainly organic chemistry, NMR spectroscopy and laboratory work. I have received awards from various funding bodies (HEA, RSC, Royal Society) to develop these areas further and, in collaboration with Professor Tina Overton (Director of the HEA Physical Sciences Subject Centre), I have written a series of context-based case studies for analytical and core chemistry. I have also co-written mathematics packages for chemists with Dr Robin Horan and Dr Martin Lavelle (School of Maths and Statistics, University of Plymouth) and I have developed PBL laboratory work for undergraduates and for schools. I am currently working on a project funded under the Chemistry For Our Future program (RSC/HEFCE) investigating the effectiveness of C/PBL in undergraduate chemistry courses.


Recent Publications

My refereed publications since 2000 are listed below (reverse chronological) and my 'My Citations' page from Google Scholar provides additional bibliographic metrics:

In Press, Submitted or In Preparation

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000


Studentships

Studentships since 1996:

Dates Student Funding Body Award
and
Date
Present
Employment
Title
2011-2012 A. Ringrose NERC MPhil
2012
School Teacher
Temporal and vertical distributions of IP25 and other lipid biomarkers in sea ice from Resolute By, Nunavut, Canada
With Professor S.J. Rowland and Dr T.A. Brown
2010-2013 P. Cabedo Sanz EU Marie Curie Initial Training Network (The Changing Arctic and Sub-Arctic Environment - CASE ITN) In progress
-
Investigations of novel lipid biomarkers as sea ice proxies. A multi proxy calibration using recent sediments from the Nordic Seas
With Dr T.A. Brown
2010-2013 A. Navarro Rodrigez EU Marie Curie Initial Training Network (The Changing Arctic and Sub-Arctic Environment - CASE ITN) In progress
-
High-resolution reconstructions of sea ice dynamics in the Nordic Seas
With Dr T.A. Brown
2007-2010 T.A. Brown NERC Ph.D.
2011
University of Plymouth, U.K.
Production and preservation of the Arctic sea ice diatom biomarker IP25 [abstract]
With Dr G. Massé and Dr Xavier Costa (Université de Bordeaux I, France)
2000-2003 R. Clough LGC/University of Plymouth Ph.D.
2004
University of Plymouth, U.K.
Factors affecting the accuracy and precision of IRA-ICP-MS for speciation studies
With Dr E.H. Evans (Director of Studies)
2000-2003 G.G. Massé University of Plymouth Studentship Ph.D.
2003
University of Plymouth, U.K.
Biological controls on the production of cytostatic lipids of diatoms [abstract]
With Professor S.J. Rowland
2000-2003 R. Santamariâ-Fernandez British Geological Survey Ph.D.
2004
Eurofins, France
Development of new strategies for the determination of environmentally sensitive element distribution in soils and sediment
With Professor S.J. Hill (Director of Studies)
1998-2001 W.G. Allard University of Plymouth Studentship Ph.D.
2002
-
Sources and structures of commonly occurring highly branched isoprenoid alkenes [abstract]
With Professor S.J. Rowland
1998-2001 P.A. Bodurtha University of Plymouth Studentship Ph.D.
2003
-
Protecting the terrestrial environment through the improved use of precipitate calcium carbonate
With Dr G.P. Matthews (Director of Studies)
1996-1999 E.L. Smith University of Plymouth Studentship/CASE with Plymouth Marine Laboratory Ph.D.
2002
University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, Barbados
Unresolved complex mixtures of aromatic hydrocarbons in the marine environment: Toxicity, solubility and photodegradation studies [abstract]
With Professor S.J. Rowland (Director of Studies) and Dr P. Donkin
1995-1998 A.J. Hopper University of Plymouth Studentship Ph.D.
1998
CQA Ltd./BP, Azerbaijan
Design, construction and non-invasive monitoring techniques in landfill
With Dr J.S. Griffiths (Department of Geology)
1995-1998 L.A. Johns University of Plymouth Studentship Ph.D.
1999
-
Structural characterisation and the diagenetic pathways of C25 highly branched isoprenoid hydrocarbons [abstract]
With Professor S.J. Rowland


Research Income

Income since 1996:

Dates Funding Body and Project Amount
2011-2012 HE STEM SW Spoke Project
Learning chemistry through placements – building on good practice and identification of new opportunities (as part of: Get STEM working: innovation with employer and student engagement)
£149,799 (£26,694 to Plymouth)
2011 The Nuffield Foundation Undergraduate Research Bursary £1440
2010-2014 EU (Marie Curie ITN)
The changing Arctic and sub-Arctic environment: A research and training programme on marine biotic indicators of recent climate changes in the high latitudes of the North Atlantic
€3M (€427,404 to Plymouth)
2010-2013 The Higher Education Academy National Teaching Fellowship £10,000
2009 The Royal Society
International Travel Grant
£1,280
2008-2009 RSC/HEFCE
Evaluation of context-based teaching in undergraduate chemistry courses (2)
£25,500
2009-2011 NERC
A high resolution account of Holocene climate variability along East Antarctica - An analysis of the IODP Wilkes Land Expedition sediments
(with Dr G. Massé (PI) and Xavier Crosta, University of Bordeaux (Partner))
£45,449
2008 NERC
Isotopic signatures of Arctic sea-ice biomarkers
(with Dr G. Massé and Professor S.J. Rowland)
£39,040
(in-kind funding)
2007-2008 NERC
Climate change in the Holocene: A multi-proxy case study
(with Dr G. Massé and Professor S.J. Rowland)
£38,671
2006-2009 NERC
A novel proxy for Arctic sea ice
(with Dr G. Massé)
£333,012
2006-2008 RSC/HEFCE
Evaluation of context-based teaching in undergraduate chemistry courses (1)
£55,520
2006-2007 NERC
A novel proxy for Arctic sea ice
(with Dr G. Massé and Professor S.J. Rowland)
£14,136
(in-kind funding)
2006-2007 Royal Society
A novel proxy for determining palaeo-temperatures of Arctic sea waters
(with Dr Guillaume Massé (PI) and Professor Steve Rowland)
£9,204
2005 The Higher Education Academy Development Project Grant
Using haloperoxidase enzymes to develop inter-disciplinary student work
(with Dr Les Jervis, School of Biological Sciences)
£5,000
2004-2005 Seale-Hayne Educational Trust
A novel lipid proxy for sea-ice levels
(with Dr Guillaume Massé, SEOES)
£4,000
2004 NERC
Dynamic aspects of terpenoid biosynthesis in diatoms (in-kind funding)
£5,250
2004 Royal Society Partnership Grant
(with Plymouth High School for Girls)
£2,500
2003-2005 NERC
Diversity of novel, technologically useful, pigment-producing diatoms in estuaries of South Devon, U.K.
£24,340
2002-2005 HEFCE, FDTL Phase 4
OLAAF: On-line assessment and feedback
(with Dr L. Jervis, Biological Sciences; Dr N. Witt, IMS; Dr R. Rayne, Birkbeck College)
£249,956
2002-2003 The Royal Society of Chemistry (Cutter Bequest)
Development and dissemination of case studies for undergraduate courses
(Dr T. Overton, University of Hull)
£30,000
2002-2003 NERC
Life on Earth: Identification of primordial membrane constituents
£47,293
2001-2002 LTSN Physical Sciences Centre
Development of LATEX/PDF support materials for learning mathematics
£5,000
2001 Strategic Research Infrastucture Fund (SRIF) HEFCE
Compound specific isotope ratio mass spectrometer and associated equipment
£200,000
2001 Region des Pays de la Loire
Identification of HBI alkenes, their source organisms and factors effecting large scale culture
ca FF 100,000
2000-2003 LGC
Factors affecting the accuracy and precision of isotope dilution analysis for speciation studies
£49,995
2000 RSC Analytical Trust Fund
Development of case studies in analytical chemistry for undergraduate chemistry courses
£46,728
2000 Region des Pays de la Loire
Determination of HBI alkenes in the oyster Crassostrea gigas
FF 30,000
2000 RSC JWT Jones Travelling Fellowship
3 month sabbatical to University of Nantes, France
£2,800
1999 ESF The Learning Connection
Flexible training programmes to meet the needs of industry
£35,646
1999 University of Plymouth SCL Initiative
Development of interactive website for field-course
£3,000
1998-1999 British Council Alliance Program
Investigation of highly branched isoprenoids as environmental markers
£3,180
1997 University of Plymouth Innovations Fund
Development of case study teaching material (2 Projects)
£5,700
1997 Project IMPROVE (HEFCE)
Secondment grant to develop project LIAISE
£4,200
1996 RSC JWT Jones Travelling Fellowship
2 month sabbatical to University of Ottawa, Canada
£2,000
1995-1998 NERC ROPA
Highly branched isoprenoid hydrocarbons as environmental indicators
£82,000
Total Since 1996 = ca £1.2M


Patents

Patents since 1996:


International & National Conference Presentations (since 1996)

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

1998

1997

Chemical Education Conference Presentations and Workshops

2011

2010

2009

2008

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

1998


Media Interest



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