In the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, we strive to impart the best education possible by employing top educators and addressing different learning styles through varied and innovative teaching techniques.

In an effort to address all learning styles and better assess problem areas, we utilize:

Our department places a heavy emphasis on quality of teaching, with many of our faculty being nationally recognized: 

  • 15/28 teaching faculty have won one or more teaching awards
  • Major teaching awards:
    • Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award (3)
    • NSPE Engineering Education Excellence Award
    • AIChE Warren K. Lewis Award for Chemical Engineering Education (2)
    • CMA Catalyst Teaching Award
    • ASEE Lifetime Achievement Award in Chemical Engineering Pedagogy
    • ASEE Outstanding Teaching Awards (3)
    • ASEE AT&T Award for Education
    • Research Corporation Cottrell Teacher/Scholar Award
    • Rocky Mountain ASEE Outstanding Faculty Award (7)
    • University of Colorado Distinguished Professor (2)
    • University of Colorado President's Teaching Scholar
    • Hazel Barnes Prize (2)
    • John and Mercedes Peebles Innovation in Education Award (3)
    • Sullivan-Carlson Innovation in Teaching Award (2)
    • Boulder Faculty Assembly Teaching Awards (6)
    • Charles A. Hutchinson Memorial Teaching Award (8)

Screencasts are digital recordings of the output from a computer monitor, including narration. They are available on Screencasts show example problems, present mini-lectures on important topics, explain how to use software packages, describe interactive simulations, explain how to use graphs and diagrams, solve exam problems for review, and present interactive ConcepTests.

Faculty in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering have used screencasts since 2008 for courses ranging from freshman level general chemistry to graduate level reaction kinetics. They are often similar to material presented in class, but students can go through them at their own pace and time – pausing to work calculations on their own, replaying sections that are difficult to understand, and watching the video weeks later to review material.

As of 2021, more than 1750 screencasts have been created and they have been viewed more than 34 million times.

Learn more at and YouTube.

The objective of engineering education is to prepare students to apply the important concepts in their field to real situations. ConcepTests and Peer Instruction allow students to formulate their own ideas, explain their thoughts to their classmates, and get immediate feedback from the instructor on difficult concepts or misconceptions they have during lecture. This creates dialog that helps students better understand material presented in class.

The Chemical and Biological Engineering has developed a library of thousands of ConcepTests for core chemical engineering courses such as:

  • Fluids
  • Heat Transfer
  • Kinetics/Reactor Design
  • Mass & Energy Balances
  • Materials Science
  • Separations & Mass Transfer
  • Thermodynamics  

Faculty who would like access to our library of materials can sign up here.

Faculty, research associates and students from the department have created more than 210 interactive simulations that demonstrate chemical engineering concepts. These simulations allow students to change parameters and observe how systems respond.

Faculty have also created more than 75 interactive self-study modules that combine ConcepTests, introductory screencasts, interactive simulations, quiz simulations and example problem screencasts.

Two virtual chemical engineering laboratories were recently created. These are browser-based and allow students to plan experiments, collect and analyze data and write laboratory reports. They can replace physical laboratories and allow students to carry out more experiments than possible in a physical laboratory.