Short Courses

Over 15 half and full day short courses have been announced for SciX 2023! Add on to your conference registration or come to Sparks just for the specialized training and in-depth instruction that our short courses are known for. Below are the short courses we are offering this year.


Please click here to view registration fees and register (coming soon).

Short Course List

Course number*

Course title


Instructor (s)

CSAS 101

Practical Vibrational Spectroscopy

½ day

James de Haseth

CSAS 102

Spectral Searching

½ day

James de Haseth

CSAS 103

Problems with FT-IR Spectra and how to Avoid

1 day

Ellen Miseo /Jenni Briggs/ Jeff D'agostino

CSAS 104

Modern Raman Microscopy for Applications in the Material and Life Sciences

1 day

Alexander Rzhevskii

CSAS 105

Process Analytical Technology:  Out of the lab and into the Line

1 day

James Rydzak

SAS 107

An Introduction to Quantitative Spectroscopic Analysis

1 day

Debbie Peru

SAS 109

Beginners guide to Atomic Absorption and Emission Spectroscopy

½ day

Dula Amarasiriwardena

SAS 110

Introduction to ICP-MS: Fundamentals, Best Practices and Tips and Tricks

½ day

Dula Amarasiriwardena

CSAS 112

The Role, Function and Proper Use of the Microscope in Microspectroscopy

½ day

Dale Purcell

CSAS 113

Spectral Interpretation of Vibrational Spectra

2 days

Peter Larkin / Mary Carrabba

CSAS 116

ABC to PMP: A Project Management Crash Course

½ day

Luisa Profeta

CSAS 117

Laser Fundamentals for Spectroscopy

½ day

Rob Chimenti

CSAS 118

Technologies and applications for miniature optical spectrometers and spectroscopic sensors

½ day

Richard Crocombe

CSAS 119

How to Make Connections: Networking at Conferences and in Higher Education

½ day

Alexis Weber

CSAS 120

Using fluorescence spectroscopy & EEMs for biopharmaceutical analyses 1 day Linda Kidder /Alan Ryder 

SAS 121

Introduction to Data Analytics for the Analytical Chemist  1 day Mary Kate Donais

SAS 122

LA-ICP-MS: Elemental Analysis of Incremental Tissues as an Indicator of Past Pollution Events

½ day

 Dula Amarasiriwardena

CSAS 123

Practical Raman Spectroscopy  1 day Tim Prusnick/Sarah Shidler 

CSAS 124

What’s in the Box – How do spectrometers work

½ day

Alex Scheeline/James de Haseth

SciX 125

Foreign Material Identification and Root Cause Analysis in Materials Manufacturing

½ day

 Jinping Dong

Multivariate analysis for beginners: pre-processing and data analysis of Raman/IR spectra in the Matlab environment


½ day

 Cassio Lima
 *** Introduction to Microsystems: A Platform for transforming analysis instruments to sensor scale devices  

½ day

 Yasser Sabry
 *** Chemometric Techniques for Quantitative Analysis  1 day  Richard Cramer

  • *Courses that have CSAS are offered and co-produced by the Coblentz Society and the Society for Applied Spectroscopy. Courses with SAS are produced by the Society for Applied Spectroscopy (I is for IRDG)
  • ** Still missing descriptions
  • *** Unaffiliated Courses

Short Course Descriptions

CSAS 101 Practical Vibrational Spectroscopy - This course will provide an introduction to Raman, mid-infrared and near-infrared concentrating on why an absorption occurs, where an absorption occurs and the benefits and limitations of the techniques.

CSAS 102 Spectral Searching - This course will provide an introduction to spectral searching. Among other topics it will cover how to do an efficient search, why the first "hit" may not be the right answer and how do you deal with a mixture or when the unknown is not in the database.

CSAS 103 Problems with FT-IT Spectra and how to Avoid Them - Users of FT-IR spectrometers may have received little or no formal training in spectroscopy and therefore cannot distinguish between “good” and “bad” spectra.  In this course, we will show many of the problems that are commonly encountered with FT-IR spectra measured by inexperienced (and often experienced!) users and show how to avoid them.

CSAS 104 Modern Raman Microscopy for Applications in the Material and Life Sciences -   The purpose of this course is to familiarize a wide circle of experimenters with the fundamentals and applications of modern Raman spectroscopic techniques with the focus to confocal Raman microscopy and imaging. The basics of Raman spectroscopy, instrumentation, principles of operation, and the main characteristics of Raman spectrometers and microscopes will be presented in the course. Examples of the application of Raman microscopy for the characterization of spatial structure, composition, and properties of “real world” samples and objects with the emphasis on nanomaterial, polymer, pharmaceutical, cellular, microorganism, plant, and food product studies will be provided.

CSAS 105 Process Analytical Technology:  Out of the lab and into the Line - Process analytical technology (PAT) is a tool for product development, scale up and manufacturing of any chemical product.  In this course, you will learn about the benefits of in-process monitoring, how to justify and plan the analysis implementation.  We will discuss different PAT tools, how to choose them for your application and implementation. We will also discuss the benefits such as saving time and money, improving green scores and manufacturing proficiency.    Applications from various industries will be used to explain concepts and provide examples of implementation. 

SAS 107 Introduction to Quantitative Spectroscopy for Near Infrared and Raman Instrumentation- This hybrid course includes both classroom lessons and live demonstrations in using Near Infrared and Raman Instruments. Participants can observe, ask questions, measure samples, and learn how to develop quantitative methods.   The course is based on industrial experience in developing methods for innovation, product & process understanding, problem solving, quality assurance testing, and process monitoring & control.  Topics discussed include how to define the problem, types of sampling and measurement errors, wavelength selection strategies, spectral preprocessing, review of quantitative tools & algorithms, and a lifecycle approach for validation and implementation of the quantitative procedure.  Lessons include real-world case study examples and easy exercises to emphasize key principles discussed.  The information can be applied to the development of quantitative procedures using Ultraviolet, Visible, Near IR, Mid-IR, and Raman instruments.  

SAS 109 and 110 Beginners guide to Atomic Absorption and Emission Spectroscopy and Introduction to ICP-MS: Fundamentals, Best Practices and Tips and TricksThis course will cover recent advances in analytical atomic spectroscopy including atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS), inductively coupled plasma-mass and atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-MS, ICP-AES), and laser ablation (LA)-ICP-MS. Course content includes theory, instrumentation, practice, troubleshooting hints, as well as common and novel applications. Analytical advantages and limitations of each method will be presented. We will also look at elemental analysis and chemical speciation techniques used in environmental, pharmaceutical, industrial and biological sample analysis. This course will be held as an interactive session and participants are encouraged to discuss their analytical challenges and experiences. The course is geared for novice as well as a refresher course to those participants who are already working in the field.

CSAS 112 - The Importance of Microscopy in Microspectroscopy

Microspectroscopy is a unified combination of microscopy and spectroscopy for microanalysis.  Every aspect of microspectroscopy requires the understanding and application of the fundamental principles of microscopy and spectroscopy.  In this intensive one-day course, we concentrate on the fundamental understanding and application of the microscope in acquiring high quality spectral data.  Microscopy plays a critically important role in selecting a sample for analysis and defining the microscopic area for which to be analyzed.  The relationship between absorbance and illumination is dependent on the optical characteristics of the specimen (diffraction, dispersion, refraction, and reflection) and the optical characteristics of the microscope.

CSAS 113:  Spectral Interpretation of Vibrational Spectra

Infrared and Raman spectroscopy, NMR and Mass spectroscopy are essential techniques to elucidate chemical structure.   The success and popularity of NMR and mass spectroscopy have resulted in a general loss of institutional knowledge among most users of IR and Raman interpretation skills.  The ability to understand and identify functional groups by interpreting IR and Raman spectra is essential for successful use by end users of these vibrational spectroscopy techniques.

This two-day course provides an introduction to IR and Raman spectra.  The course content focuses on developing a fundamental understanding of group frequencies and how to apply this to determine molecular structure using both the IR and Raman spectra.  Lectures are supplemented with multiple well illustrated examples as well as in-class spectral problem sets under the guidance of highly experienced industrial spectroscopists.

CSAS 116: ABC to PMP: A Project Management Crash Course - Project management – a term invoking both excitement and loathing to the experienced professional but to the unfamiliar, it might as well be a second language for a freshly minted scientist venturing out into the world.  For the average scientist, the fundamentals of project management are not found anywhere in their undergraduate or graduate level schooling, despite project management being used throughout scientific disciplines. Learning further about project management early in one’s career (or even a little later on) can help scientists understand the nuances to formal project management within their chosen discipline.

This course is not a substitute for formal project management training towards a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification, but aims to provide a half day of learning for attendees to understand how project management fundamentals influence all scientists in modern disciplines.  Attendees should leave the course having a firmer understanding of the influences of project management within all realms of scientific work

CSAS 117 Laser Fundamentals for Spectroscopy - This course is designed to give attendees an introduction to the fundamentals of laser physics as well as a practical understanding of common laser designs and their applications in spectroscopy.   This course will begin by providing a fundamental understanding of the three basic components of a laser: gain medium, resonator, and excitation source.  You will learn how these components affect the laser characteristics that are important to spectroscopists, specifically, mode structure, spectral linewidth, pulse-width and average power.  Finally, attendees will be introduced to the pros and cons of common gas, solid-state, and diode laser designs as they apply to various spectroscopy applications

CSAS 118: Technologies and applications for miniature optical spectrometers and spectroscopic sensors> - In the past twenty years optical spectrometers have shrunk dramatically in size, giving us successively laboratory-portable, toaster-sized, instruments; cordless-drill-sized portable instruments for use in the field; and onto spectrometers the size of a computer mouse or deck of cards.  The latest development in portable spectroscopy is the availability of very low-cost multispectral sensors, the size of computer chips, leading to the possibility of embedding them into consumer goods. Multispectral sensors can now not only be incorporated into ‘white goods’ like washing machines and dryers, but also into ‘fitness’ products like smart watches and sports watches, and as photonic miniaturization increases, into ‘wearables’ like smart rings, providing the user with health information. A variety of photonic components and technologies can be utilized for these miniature devices including silicon photonics and photonic integrated circuits (PICs), produced en masse using semiconductor manufacturing techniques; components from LiDAR including SPAD arrays; electronically-tunable detectors; and 'photonic’, ‘plasmonic’ and ‘computational’ devices. This course surveys technologies and applications for miniature optical spectrometers and spectroscopic sensors.

CSAS 119: How to Make Connections: Networking at Conferences and in Higher Education: - Reaching the end of your educational career can be daunting when trying to determine what comes next. There is no one who knows that more than someone else in your shoes. This short course will allow you to discuss the trials and tribulations you face when during/after completing this major milestone. This includes learning ways to get involved in professional development, unique opportunities/options when finishing your education, and how to make professional connections at conferences. Network with other graduate students and young professionals that are undergoing a similar experience as yourself.

Conferences and symposia are an ideal location to network and make connections that can lead to amazing opportunities. However, as a student, it can be difficult to be a young professional attending a conference. It can be intimidating to talk to someone whom you’ve only heard about or admired based on their research/job. Moreover, if you are more introverted, there is an additional barrier to overcome to network at conferences. But if you go into conferences with a plan, it helps limit the uncertainty and apprehension that comes with the event. You will learn insights on how to make the most out of a conference experience to and set yourself up for the best future possible. Discussion topics include – conference etiquette, good networking practices, and post-conference follow-up. 

CSAS 120: Using fluorescence spectroscopy & EEMs for biopharmaceutical analyses - This course has been designed to provide an in-depth introduction into the use of fluorescence spectroscopy and in particular Excitation Emission Matrix (EEM) for the quantitative and qualitative analysis of complex biogenic materials such as those encountered in biopharmaceutical manufacturing (e.g., vaccines, monoclonal antibodies, etc.).

Our focus is not limited to applications in Biopharma/Life Sciences but also extends to various topics in materials Science (e.g., polymer/colloid science, petroleum analysis, etc.,).  This course combines a series of lectures on the core aspects along with several practical sessions.  During these sessions, we will demonstrate how even novice users can get really great results through a series of live demonstrations on various systems.

SAS 121:  Introduction to Data Analytics for Analytical Chemists - This course provides students with an introduction to data processing and chemometrics through applications in R and Excel. Topics include data visualization, testing the significance of data, data cleanup, and finding structure in data.

SAS: 122LA-ICP-MS: Elemental Analysis of Incremental Tissues as an Indicator of Past Pollution Events - Human teeth, hair, shells, tree rings and fish otolith are examples of incrementally deposited tissues with a defined time axis. These tissues are repositories of trace metals and excellent materials for detection of past pollution episodes. We will introduce how microprobe techniques like LA-ICP-MS methods can be used for analysis of these incremental tissues. We will present LA-ICP-MS instrumentation, theory practice, troubleshooting hints, as well as sample preparation and instrument calibration strategies for LA-ICP-MS. Unique applications in biology, environmental sciences, archeology, anthropology and forensic science will be presented. Analytical advantages and limitations of each method will be discussed.

CSAS: 123 Practical Raman Spectroscopy - Raman instruments can be highly configurable in order to suit diverse applications. Focusing on the design characteristics of Raman instrumentation, this course provides attendees with a deeper understanding of how Raman instrumentation works in order to become better Raman spectroscopists. We will discuss the choice of laser, microscope, spectrometer design, detector options, sample preparation, and data collection techniques which impact the type and quality of the Raman data that is collected.  

CSAS 124 What’s in the Box? How a Spectrometer Works - A spectrometer’s output is indistinguishable from the output of a video game unless the user knows what is going on inside and how the instrument’s behavior influences data generation and meaning. This short course gives an overview of spectrographs and interferometers to demystify the light-tight box and computations that reveal spectra. What are an instrument’s limitations? If one instrument can’t provide adequate dynamic range, resolution, measurement speed, or molecular insight, what other instrument might? If the signal is drowning in noise, is there anything you can do? Can an instrument have too much resolution? Why are interferometers more common for infrared absorbance measurements than for atomic emission? This course will provide some answers, suggest additional questions, and point you to sources that can illuminate your measurements.

SciX 125 Foreign Material Identification and Root Cause Analysis in Materials Manufacturing - Unexpected situations, such as occasional fault from the operators, physical wear and tear from the equipment and tools, failure in environmental controls and sudden change in operating conditions, happen inevitably during materials manufacturing, causing safety and quality concerns on the finished product. Introduction of chemical contaminations and foreign materials and change of color or physical characteristics are just a few typical examples. This short course introduces general strategies and spectroscopy and microscopy methods to identify the root cause of these issues and find a solution to correct or prevent the recurrence of the problem. Several real-life examples will be demonstrated throughout the course.

CSIRDG 126 Multivariate analysis for beginners: pre-processing and data analysis of Raman/IR spectra in the Matlab environment - The goal of this course is to teach participants how to perform basic methods used for pre-processing and multivariate data analysis of Raman/IR spectra. The course will provide an introduction to the Matlab computing environment, with a focus on how to use in-house Matlab scripts to analyse spectral data for those with little to no previous programming experience. Development of advanced tools such as writing programs with branching and loops will not be discussed in the course. The course will focus mainly on the impacts of pre-processing methods on the graphical representation of results obtained by multivariate methods such as PCA, PC-CVA, and HCA. Theoretical considerations and equations about the methods will be limited to what is needed to have sufficient insight to use these techniques properly. Although this course will introduce Matlab to beginners, the course will also benefit participants who already have experience with Matlab and/or another programming language, but want to learn more about PCA, PC-CVA, and HCA and the impacts of preprocessing Raman/IR data on these multivariate methods.

Unaffiliated Courses

Introduction to microsystems: a platform for transforming analysis instruments to sensor scale devices - Given the rapid development of micro spectroscopic devices and sensors, this course is designed to give an introduction to the domain of optical microsystems and their use to miniaturize the conventional bulky systems and devices used in the spectroscopy world. The course ramps up the attendee from the basic optical, electrical, mechanical and fluidic concepts to the realization of complete systems on a small chip together with use cases on infrared spectrometers and refractometers

Chemometric Techniques for Quantitative Analysis - Gain an intuitive understanding of ILS, CLS, PCR, and PLS, including similarities and differences among the techniques: -The steps necessary for the creation and successful deployment of calibrations; -The pitfalls and tradeoffs, and how to intelligently use them to improve calibrations and produce better analytical results; -The strengths and weaknesses of each technique; -How to select calibration standards and assess the reliability of calibrations; -Which software capabilities and features are important for applications The data-centric approach to the course topics does not require any special mathematical background. Concepts are presented using data visualization rather than equations. A basic familiarity with matrix multiplication would be helpful.

If you are interested in proposing a short course for the 2023 SciX conference, contact Short Courses Chair Ellen Miseo.

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