This short small group activity introduces students to the Leibniz notation used for partial derivatives in thermodynamics, in which the variables being held constant are given explicitly. Students are guided to associate variables to their proper categories.
In the middle column below, list each variable in the box connected to the description of the role of the variable.
- If \(a=c^3+7bc-5b^2\), find \[\left(\frac{\partial a}{\partial b}\right)_c\]
- For the same equation, find \[\left(\frac{\partial b}{\partial c}\right)_a\]