College of Science and Health | DePaul University > Faculty & Staff > Faculty A-Z > Ruben Parra

Ruben D. Parra

  • Director of the Office for Teaching, Learning and Assessment, Professor, Computational Chemistry
  • ​PhD
  • Chemistry
  • (773) 325-4343
Classes Taught
  • CHE100: Our Chemical World
  • CHE101: Exploring Matter (with lab)
  • CHE111: General and Analytical Chemistry I
  • CHE111LAB
  • CHE113: General and Analytical Chemistry II
  • CHE113LAB
  • CHE115: General and Analytical Chemistry III
  • CHE131: General Chemistry I (with laboratory)
  • CHE133: General Chemistry II (with laboratory)
  • CHE192: Mathematical Methods of Chemistry
  • CHE210: Physical Chemistry I
  • CHE211: Physical Chemistry II
  • CHE215: Physical Chemistry III
  • CHE230: Organic Chemistry I
  • CHE236: Organic Chemistry I
  • CHE238: Organic Chemistry II
  • CHE306: Kinetics and Statistical Mechanics
  • CHE312/412: Quantum Chemistry
  • CHE313: Computational Chemistry
  • LSP120: Quantitative Reasoning
  • CHE321: Intermediate Inorganic Chemistry (with laboratory)
  • CHE470: Advanced Physical Chemistry I
  • CHE476: Computational Chemistry
  • CHE477: Computational Chemistry Lab
Research Interests
Ruben Parra’s research focuses on the on the investigation of inter- and intra-molecular interactions using computational methodologies based on molecular orbital theory and density functional theory. Of primary interest has been the study of non-additive or cooperative effects in hydrogen bonding interactions, and the study conformations of molecules and the binding of metal ions by macromolecules. Most recently, Parra’s research has been devoted to halogen bonding in itself, and its use in molecular docking.

Another part of Parra's research program is in the field of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Here, Parra aims at developing a better understanding of how people learn in the natural sciences, and use this understanding to improve his teaching in the classroom.
Select Publications
  • R. D. Parra, “Concerted Halogen Bonding and Orthogonal Metal-Halogen Interactions in Dimers of Lithium Formamidinate and Halogenated Formamidines: An ab Initio Study.” Molecules, 2014, 19(1), 1069-1084. Link

  • B. Beck-Winchatz, R. D. Parra, “Finding Out What They Really Think: Assessing Non-Science Majors’ Views of the Nature of Science” College Teaching; 2013, 61,131-137. Link

  • R. D. Parra, “Dimers and trimers of formamidine and its mono-halogenated analogues HN=CHNHX, (X = H, Cl, Br, or I): A comparative study of resonance-assisted hydrogen and halogen bonds” Computational and Theoretical Chemistry, COMPTC; 2012, 998, 183-192. Link

  • R. D. Parra, K. Streu, “Cooperative Effects in Regular and Bifurcated Intramolecular OH…O=C Interactions: A Computational Study”; Computational and Theoretical Chemistry, COMPTC, 2011, 977, 181-187. Link

  • R. D.  Parra, “Folding oligomers of difluorinated thienylfurans: a DFT study”; Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys.; 2010, 12, 523-532. Link
Professional Activities
  • Director of the University Office for Teaching, Learning and Assessment
  • Chemistry Advising Committee
  • Chemistry Curriculum Committee
  • Organic Chemistry Committee
  • Chemistry Personnel Committee
  • Quality of Instruction Council
Reviewer for several journals (Nanoscale, Entropy, Journal of Physical Chemistry, ISRN Physical Chemistry, Journal of Material Chemistry C, Computational and Theoretical Chemistry, International Journal of Quantum Chemistry, Chemical Physics Letter,  Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data,  Spectrochimica Acta Part A, Journal of Organic Chemistry, among others )
Professional Society Memberships
  • American Chemical Society
  • Professional Organization Development
  • International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning