Ningfeng (Peter) Zhao
Assistant Professor

Department of Chemistry
     P.O. Box 70695
     East Tennessee State University
     Johnson City, TN 37614
     Tel: (423) 439-4306, Fax: (423) 439-5835

    Postdoctoral, University of Missouri, University of Nevada, Reno, 2006-2008
    Ph.D., Wichita State University, 2005    
    B.S., University of Science & Technology of China, 2000

    Introduction to Chemistry Survey
    General Chemistry
    Descriptive Inorganic Chemistry
    Advanced Inorganic Chemistry
    Reaction mechanism of Coordination Compounds
    Special Topic of Bioinorganic Chemistry
    Green Revolution: Challenges and Opportunities

Research Interests

    Chemical education, as well as many other science disciplines, has a basic problem that the form of teaching is not optimal for promoting student learning. I have developed interests in designing and implementing inquiry-based science education and my research focus on K-16 inquiry-based science curriculum and professional development. For students, inquiry-based instruction encompasses not only the understanding of scientific concepts and principles, but also the ability to engage in higher-level intellectual activities. For instructors, it is critical to help them overcome the common constraints of inquiry practice, and provide sustained support for curriculum development and implementation that apply the essential features of inquiry, and improve the quality of both teaching and learning. Showing below is the Inquiry Continuum with two-dimensional representation reflecting the process and degree of inquiry in a classroom exercise.

    I also have inorganic research interest in synthesis and characterization of multi-dentate transition metal complexes, which contribute to the sciences of the new century – material and bioinorganic sciences. Multi-dentate ligands such as polypyrazolylborate, poly(1,2,4-triazolyl)borate, and polythioimidazolylborate are designed and synthesized due to their versatility and potential binding capability. Structures, properties, and reactivities of transition metal complexes from the series of ligands can be varied by changing either the center metal ion or the peripheral ligand substituents, leading to the formation of molecular materials with bulky properties, or bioactive molecules that can help understand natural bioinorganic mechanism. Showing below are X-ray crystal structures of cyano-substituted bispyrazolylborate thallium complexes.

Selected Publications

Johnson, D., Eichhorn, D., Moore, C., Mwania, T. & Zhao, N.,Cyano-substituted Bispyrazolylborate Thallium(I)     Complexes, J. Chem. Cryst. 2011, under review.

Zhao, N., Witzig, S., Adams, J., Weaver, J. & Schmidt, F., “Transformative Professional Development: Inquiry-based College Science Teaching Institutes”, J. Col. Sci. Teaching. 2012, 41(3), 38.

Zhao, N. & Wardeska, J., “Mini-journal Inquiry Laboratory – A Case Study in a General Chemistry Kinetics Experiment”, J. Chem. Educ. 2011, 88, 452.

Witzig, S., Zhao, N., Schmidt, F., Adams, J., Weaver, J. & Abell, S., “Achievable Inquiry in the College Laboratory: The Mini-journal”, J. Col. Sci. Teaching. 2010, 39(6), 14.

Zhao, N., Van Stipdonk, M., Stern, C. & Eichhorn, D., “Cyanoscorpionates: Synthesis and Crystallographic Characterization of a One-Dimensional Cu(I) Coordination Polymers”, Inorg. Chem. 2008, 47, 5945.

Shearer, J. & Zhao, N., “[NiII(BEAAM)](Me4N): A Synthetic Model for NiSOD that Contains Ni in a Mixed Amine/Amide Coordination Environment”, Inorg. Chem. 2006, 45, 9637.

                                                                                                        Last Updated by Peter Zhao, Nov. 2011