Updated list of covered material and recommended out-of-class work: gto.gif (1935 bytes)

This Web version is somewhat different from the syllabus given in class. It will be also updated or corrected during the semester. For class policies the printed syllabus, as issued in the class on the first day, prevails.

The pdf file of the syllabus distributed on the first day of classes is here: recycle3.gif (216 bytes)

Study guide for tests and quizzes.

Late drop  !

CHEM110 - CHEMISTRY Sections 1 and 2, 3.0 credit hours Fall 2003

Catalog description of the course

Faraday 143

12:30-13:45 Tu, Th - Section 1 (160 enrolled, as of 23 August 2003)

18:00-19:15 Mo, We - Section 2 (155 enrolled, as of 23 August 2003)

(The two sections will be essentially identical. The dates of tests and quizzes differ. The students must attend the section for which they registered.)

INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Petr Vanýsek; Office, Faraday West 418

You may be taking concurrently CHEM 111, the laboratory to accompany 110. The instructor responsible for the laboratories is Dr. D. Ballantine, Jr., Faraday West 424. The lab and class grades are independent.

TEXT: Steve Russo and Michael E. Silver, Introductory Chemistry, 2nd edition, ISBN: 0-321-04634-X Publisher: Benjamin Cummings Copyright: 2002

(Monday of
the week)  
25.8.03   What Is Chemistry?The Numerical Side of Chemistry 1-2
  The Numerical Side of Chemistry 2
1.9.03 The Evolution of Atomic Theory.
Thursday 12:30 class of Section 1 is cancelled to catch up with the missed class of Section 2 on Labor Day.
  The Modern Model of the Atom. 4
8.9.03 Bonding Between Atoms. 5
  The Structure of Molecules. 6
15.9.03 Test I*** (19 September 2003 - last day to withdraw)  
  The Structure of Molecules. 6
22.9.03 Chemical Reactions. 7
  Chemical Reactions. 7
29.9.03 Stoichiometry
  Stoichiometry 8
6.10.03 The Transfer of Electrons in a Chemical Reaction. 9
  The Transfer of Electrons in a Chemical Reaction. 9
13.10.03 Test II***  
  Phases of Matter. 10
20.10.03 Phases of Matter.
  Solutions. 12**
27.10.03 Solutions. 12**
  When Reactants Turn Into Products. 13
3.11.03 When Reactants Turn Into Products. 13
  Chemical Equilibrium 14
10.11.03 Test III***
  Chemical Equilibrium 14
17.11.03 Electrolytes, Acids, and Bases. 15
  Electrolytes, Acids, and Bases. 15
24.11.03 Nuclear Chemistry. 16
1.12.03 Chemistry in our lives (current topics)  
  Course review all


** Chapter 11 is skipped

***The questions on the written examinations will differ for the two sections.

Schedule of tests/quizzes:

Section I (Tuesday/Thursday)

26.8.      Background quiz (not included in grading)
16.9       Test I
(19.9.     Last day to withdraw)
30.9.      Quiz I
14.10.    Test II
28.10     Quiz II
11.11.    Test III
25.11.    Quiz III


Section II (Monday/Wednesday)

25.8.      Background quiz (not included in grading)
15.9       Test I
(19.9.     Last day to withdraw)
29.9.      Quiz I
13.10.    Test II
27.10     Quiz II
10.11.    Test III
24.11.    Quiz III


OFFICE HOURS: 8:00-9:00 Tuesday, 16:00-17:00 Wednesday. Other times by appointment. I will help you with your problems, but come to see me with questions and problems already at least partially prepared. Do not expect the instructor to give you your own private make-up class. When coming to the office hours, be prepared to share the office or the time with other students. There is also help available, every working day,  through the departmental tutors, and also through a leader in the supplemental instruction. I will also read your e-mail, but if you want a thoughtful response, write a thoughtful mail. Check your spelling and use capital letters where appropriate.

Proctors: Section 1: Mishur, Sheets, Sun; Section 2: Sheets (replaced Bryhan 2 Sept. 2003), Lin, Viatkunas

Required calculator: 30xabig.jpg (30297 bytes)

There is a REQUIRED calculator for this course, Texas Instruments TI-30Xa. If you plan to use a calculator during tests or quizzes, than it is the only one allowed. If we perform calculations in class or during practice, all will be explain using this calculator. [Shop around. Wal-Mart has one for $18 (on August 15 the price was $ 9.88) and Target sells the same for $ 9.86 and Office Depot has them for $ 9.99]
Rationale: (1) Modern technology allows storing lot of data in small devices and some of the calculator-like device can communicate with the outside world. Access to unapproved material or communication with others during a test or a quiz is cheating. To prevent this and assure that all students have identical opportunity a single calculator without such capabilities is permitted. (2) If you need a help with your calculator (rather than the calculation), I can help you only if I am familiar with your calculator. Thus, to be able to help everybody, I will learn the detailed operation of this one.
Note: Make sure you get the TI-30Xa model and not some similarly sounding one. For example TI-30X IIS and TI-30X IIB (both with a two line display) are not acceptable. The IT-30Xa exists also in a solar powered version and in the eco (ecological friendly) version. Any of the three versions is acceptable. Write your name on the back of the calculator so that you can identify it. There will be 155 identical in the class.

Have a calculator and a pad for calculations ready for each class period. The lecture will be always interspersed with your active participation.

For tests it is assumed that everybody has the specified calculator, pencil No. 2 (for computer grading forms), a pen for essay answers (only answers written in permanent ink can be reconsidered if you suspect an error in grading of an essay question or expect reconsideration for partial credit), and adequate knowledge to answer correctly the questions.

The course relies on active knowledge of mathematical calculations and the ability to setup algebraic equations. Helpful for those insecure in mathematics are the following books: Miller, Lial, Schneider; Fundamentals of college algebra (MATH 110 book, or similar); Dorothy M. Goldish: Beginning mathematics for beginning chemistry, 4th Ed., Macmillan, New York, 1990. Walter J. Gleason: Is your math ready for chemistry?, W. C. Brown Publishers, Dubuque 1993.


Hour tests (3) worth each 100 points. Quizzes (3) worth each 40 points. The sum of the quizzes, if higher that the worst test, will be used instead of the worst test. Tests: 60% (300 points)

Note that replacing the score of the worst test by the quiz score is your insurance against missing a test. There will be no make-up for a test or a quiz for any reason.  

Comprehensive final test 40% (200 points) [TOTAL 100% = 500 points]

The work is multiple choice. Only one of the five answers is correct. Scoring is the benevolent "right answers only" versus the more stringent, discouraging guessing "right minus wrong." However, if you check more than one answer, than that question does not count (i.e., you cannot check all five answers and assume this will be always right.)

Finals: Section 1 (12:30 class) - Tuesday, December 9, 12:00-13:50

Section 2 (18:00 class) -Monday, December 8, 18-19:50


Your class percentage will be calculated as the sum of all the points earned (with the test/quiz replacement rule), divided by 5. The grades will be as follows (NIU catalog):

A Outstanding competence 90% and more

B Above satisfactory competence 80% to 89.99%

C Satisfactory level of competence 70% to 79.99%

D Marginally satisfactory competence 60% to 69.99%

F Unsatisfactory level of competence < 60%


Note on mathematical background:
    This course of introductory chemistry is replete with mathematical problems, known as "word problems." In those, one has to figure out first what needs to be calculated and then do the actual calculation, usually not hard with a calculator. However, setting up the problems may be challenging for some.     

    Take as an example the following problem: Seven lemons sell for three dollars. How much will it cost to buy twelve lemons? This is a simple ratio calculation and the answer should be $ 5.14. You should try, right now, to do the math. If you are not comfortable with doing this problem, whether with a calculator or on a piece of paper, and do not know immediately how to set up the numbers to get the answer, then, you will have a major problem in this class. Do not take it, enroll instead in a math skills refresher course. 

Using the scannable forms for tests or quizzes:

Scantron form.jpg (1625254 bytes)
pencil.jpg (11366 bytes)

Use the usual pencil (Pencil No. 2) to fill in ovals. You can use a refillable lead pencil. The equivalent of No. 2 hardness is HB.
Staedtler refillable pen.jpg (17789 bytes)Staedtler leads.jpg (9644 bytes)

Be sure that you fill in your last name (and fill in the corresponding ovals) and include your initials. If you have just one initial, leave the second field blank. If you change your name during the semester it may be more practical to keep using the old name/initials.

The block for the ID NUMBER has 9 spaces and it was originally intended for the social security number. The university can no longer use the number officially for identification. Recommended is the "Z" number, issued to you as a computer logon. It starts with the letter Z and is followed by 6 numbers, e.g., Z032673. This is the number by which I can find you in the class roster. Omit the Z and write the six  numbers as your student ID starting with the leftmost column. It will leave three empty spaces at the end. Note that many of the numbers begin with "0" That is a valid number and you should include it.  If you do not want to use the Z number, do not have it or do not know what it is, you may still use the social security number since most of you remember it, or  you can use other number as well. Whatever number you use the first time, you should use it throughout the semester even if you made the first time a mistake in it. Two different numbers will make you appear as two different persons. I catch it for the final grade, but it is always a hassle.

To obtain the "Z" number you can call 752-7738.

For tests there will be a seating chart, with a seat number assign to each student. The layout of Faraday 143 is here.gto.gif (1935 bytes)


DON'T  sep.jpg (5187 bytes)

In general, cheating means presenting or using work that was not done entirely by you and, in the case of in-class examination, it includes also presenting or using your work that was written outside the classroom. You may not talk or pass notes to each other on any subject. Having other materials than those allowed for the work with you within reach during test or sharing calculators is cheating as well. Keep what you may need for the test within reach and keep what you should not have with you in your closed packs or better yet, do not bring it in. During tests you must put away any devices that would allow you to communicate with others or access databases. You are allowed to use only the specified calculator. Any other type has to be put away. Any such use during graded in-class work will result in zero on your work. I cannot investigate the nature and legality of your outside contact.

Other issues:

No smoking in the building, no food or drink in the class.

TAPING/RECORDING OF THE LECTURE:  You are encouraged to take good notes, reflecting your interpretation and understanding of the lecture. However, you are not permitted to make verbatim recording or transcription of the lecture.

ATTENDANCE: Attendance at the lectures is not monitored but it is in your best interest to be there. Consider the following: (1) The tests are based on the textbook material covered in the class as well as the class material, which may not be in the textbook, (2) Office hour cannot be used to catch up on material missed by a class absence. LATE ARRIVAL TO CLASS is discouraged. It disrupts the other students and the instructor and if repeated, may be basis for barring from the class. If you absolutely must arrive late, enter quietly from the back and sit in the back. Only the persons enrolled in that class and section can attend the lecture.

NOTE ON CELL PHONES AND THE LIKE: Cell phones are great technology and it is great to have one with you for emergency. (Campus police: 815-753-1212). However, please, turn off your phones and other noise-making devices as a courtesy to others, and do not distract yourself by reading and sending text messages. You must turn cell phones and any other communication devices off and put them away during tests and quizzes.


Introductory chemistry tutor schedule (this info added 25 August 2003 10:40)

Faraday Hall - Room 247

Monday   Vadali   8:30-11:15; 11:45-15:30
Tuesday   Schreckenberg   8:30-11:15; 11:45-15:30
Wednesday   Hao   8:30-11:15; 11:45-15:30
Thursday   Chappell   8:30-11:15; 11:45-15:30
Friday   Neuder   8:30-11:15; 11:45-14:00

Tutors will occupy this office until 10:00 on Wednesday of finals week.

Supplemental instruction
This type of instructioin, provided by NIU ACCESS (Access to courses and careers through Educational Support Services)  is available for both sections. The supplemental instruction leader is Jim Richter. (added 27 August 2003)



Alchemy symbols on the wall of Faraday 143.

Why is it interesting to take chemistry?


Inception: 28 August 2002 (conversion from MS Word syllabus distributed 27 August 2002, for 2002 syllabus, reworked for fall 2003 with the adoption of a new textbook.) 
Last revised: 16 March 2008 08:23
© Petr Vanýsek
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