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Dan Crane, Ph.D.

Dean, College of Behavioral & Natural Sciences
Professor of Chemistry

Contact Information

Nazareth Hall

3003 Snelling Ave. N
St Paul, MN 55113



Ph. D. in Chemistry, University of California, Santa Barbara, 1991 B.S. in Chemistry, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, 1986 Technical Translator’s Certificate in German, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, 1986

Academic Appointments

1991-present Northwestern College & University of Northwestern – Saint Paul

2000 – present Professor of Chemistry

1995 – 2000 Associate Professor of Chemistry

1991 - 1995 Assistant Professor of Chemistry

Summers, 1993-2006 Visiting Professor, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis

Summer 1996 Visiting Research Assistant, University of Minnesota

1990-1991 Lecturer in Chemistry, The Pennsylvania State University, Erie

May 1989 Visiting Research Assistant, Institute for Inorganic Chemistry,

University of Witten/Herdecke, Germany

1987-1989 Research Assistant, University of California, Santa Barbara

1986-1988 Teaching Assistant, University of California, Santa Barbara

General Chemistry and Honors General Chemistry

1985-1986 Teaching Assistant, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology,

general and organic chemistry laboratories

Summer 1985 Summer Undergraduate Researcher, Washington University,
St. Louis, MO

College Administration and Program Development

2014 – present Dean of the College of Behavioral and Natural Sciences
2002 – 2011 Chair, Science & Mathematics
2011 – 2014 Chair, Mathematics & Engineering

In the past, I have taught General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Physical Chemistry, and Introduction to Scientific Thought. More recently I have been teaching only General Chemistry.

Research Interests

My research interests in chemistry revolve around misunderstood or poorly-explained concepts in lower-level chemistry textbooks. Two examples are the nature of buffer solutions and the formulation of allowed molecular orbitals – why are some configurations allowed and some are forbidden?

A fun thing I do with students is a different type of research – applied physics/engineering – related to maximizing a rider’s efficiency by minimizing rolling resistance on a bicycle.

Hobbies and Interests

I like reading, woodworking and bicycling.

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