Grace College Chemistry Professor Contributes to New Textbook

A new chemistry textbook was published in December, 2017. While it did not top the New York Times Best Seller list, “Introductory Chemistry,” authored by Dr. Kevin Revell, an organic chemistry professor at Murray State University, is notable for more than its literary value. Grace College’s own Dr. Chad Snyder, chair of the Science and Mathematics Department, wrote the problem solutions at the end of the textbook and in the accompanying study guide. He also served as the reviewer for several of the chapters. Grace College, as a teaching college, “places a premium on this kind of publication,” said Dr. Mark Norris, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences.

In addition to Snyder’s contributions, Revell’s book fills a void in the available chemistry texts. Snyder has always been dissatisfied with most introductory chemistry books, which generally fall short of providing students the needed structure and guidance to academically challenging concepts. As an organic chemist, Revell, even more than most chemists, must pay attention to intricate details, which comes across in his writing. Each chapter is presented with care for structure, so that the material is as accessible for students.

Dr. Chad Snyder instructs students in the chemistry lab.

Snyder met Revell at Western Kentucky University. Snyder, then an assistant professor of organic chemistry, attended a research seminar taught by  Revell and Snyder was able to converse with him afterwards. They had a lot in common, professionally and personally. “It was really neat to find out he was a Christian and that he was willing to share that,” Snyder said, and the two became fast friends.

As a Christian, Revell’s faith permeates his work. His book is dedicated in part to God the Father, and he introduces topics that connect science with Christianity. “In many ways he’s written a faith-integrated chemistry book that will be available to the nation’s secular and Christian colleges and universities for use in their introductory chemistry courses,” Snyder said. “My hope is that this textbook will not only be helpful to faculty and students using it, but also that its faith content will help lead many to Christ.”

The Science and Mathematics Department at Grace College includes 13 majors and six minors.  Department Chair Dr. Chad Snyder is professor of chemistry and directs the physical science program and the chemical research program.  For more information about the department and Dr. Snyder, please visit here.

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