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Chemistry Course Descriptions

CHEM 110 - Basic Chemistry (1.25) (PSL)

Basic aspects of structural chemistry with emphasis on physiological applications. Offered each fall.

CHEM 120 - Forensic Science (1.25) (PSL)

Study of the scientific aspects of evidence from the gathering of the evidence through the laboratory stage. The course emphasizes the scientific method and the reliability of evidence. The roles of forensic experts in both the laboratory and the criminal courts are discussed. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 130 - Chemistry of the Environment (1.25) (PSL)

See Environmental Studies 130. A survey of chemistry principles with an emphasis on the application of these principles to environmental topics such as air and water pollution, global warming, and energy. Laboratory experiments may involve analysis of water from local stream and lakes and the analysis of vegetables for pesticide residue. Can be used toward the Environmental Studies minor. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 135 - Water Quality (1.0) (PSI) (Cross-listed with ENST 135)

Considered by some a fundamental human right, safe and plentiful drinking water is often constrained by physical forces and degraded by human activity. We will explore the issues that affect water quantity and quality, using a combination of field and laboratory-based experimentation, as well as competitive simulation (teaching through games). Offered occasionally.

CHEM 138 - Better Living Through Green Chemistry (1.0) (PSI) (Cross-listed with ENST 138)

This course will introduce students to the principles of green chemistry with a special emphasis on environmental problems caused by toxic chemicals. The course will begin with an introduction to basic chemistry concepts related to the structure of atoms and molecules, and then get into a discussion of several case studies related to environmental problems, and how green chemistry can offer potential solutions. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 140 - Chemistry in the Kitchen (1.0) (PSI)

An introduction to the basic chemical concepts through an examination of food. The course examines the constitution of raw foodstuffs, and what happens on a molecular level as these substances are combined, cooked and metabolized. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 201, 202 - General Chemistry (1.25) (201-PSL)

Fundamental principles and concepts of chemistry. Prerequisites: C- or better in 201, or equivalent, or AP Chem score of 4 or 5 for Chem 202.  Chem 201 is offered in the Fall and Chem 202 in the Spring.

CHEM 234 - Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology (1.25) (PSL) (Cross-listed with ENST 234)

Starting from basic chemistry concepts, this class explores the many ways in which the natural world tries to poison us. We will study how contaminants move in the environ­ment, how they enter the food web, and, ultimately, the harm they cause to individuals, populations, and communities. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 240 - From Beverages to Biofuels (1.0)

 This interdisciplinary course will introduce students to the science and history of fermentation, distillation, biofuels, and the alcoholic beverage industry. Through a combination of on-campus and travel activities students will study the biochemistry of fermentation, the chemistry of distillation, quality control and flavor in the ethanol industry, the utility and challenges of ethanol as a motor fuel, the social history of brewing and distillation in the US, the role of women in these industries, and the rise and fall of prohibition. Students must be 21 years old by the start of the course and have completed CHEM 201/202 and one of the following sequences: BIOL 101/102. BIOL 107/108 or CHEM 311/312, all with grades of C- or better. The class will visit venues where alcoholic beverages are produced/served. Tasting activities are optional. This course cannot be used to fulfill a major or minor requirement. Offered occasionally May Term.

CHEM 300 - Chemistry Seminar (Fall 0.00) (Spring 0.25)

This course will introduce students to a variety of chemistry research topics and scientific pursuits through attendance at a required number of chemistry colloquia and other science and career related events. Required for declared sophomore, junior, and senior chemistry majors. Zero units in fall and 0.25 units in spring. May be repeated for a total of 1.0 course units. Credit/No Credit grading. Prerequisites: C- in CHEM 202 or consent of a chemistry faculty member. Offered each semester

CHEM 301 - Quantitative Analysis (1.25)

An introduction to making and interpreting chemical measurements that emphasizes: the statistical evaluation of data, the application of ionic equilibria and the understanding of analytical methods/tools. Prerequisite: CHEM 202. Offered each spring. Using both wet chemical techniques and instruments routinely employed in industry and research, students will make chemical measurements, analyze them statistically, and interpret their significance. Prerequisite: CHEM 202 and CHEM 301. Offered each spring.

CHEM 304 - Instrumental Analysis

Principles of the design and use of modern electronic instrumentation in the chemistry laboratory with emphasis on spectral, electroanalytical and chromatographic instrumentation. Prerequisite: 302 Offered occasionally

CHEM 311, 312 - Organic Chemistry (1.25) (311-PSL)

Fundamentals of aliphatic and aromatic chemistry including mechanisms, syntheses, stereochemistry, and spectroscopy. Prerequisites: 202 (grade of C- or better).; 311 (grade of c- or better) for 312. Chem 311 is offered in the Fall and Chem 212 in the spring.

CHEM 317 - Survey of Biochemistry

An introduction to the fundamental principles of biochemistry and the application of chemical principles to biological problems. Topics include the structure and function of proteins, nucleic acids, carbohydrates, lipids as well as the major catabolic and biosynthetic pathways. Prerequisite: Biology 102 or 108, and Chemistry 312 (grade of C- or better), or the consent of the instructor and chair. Offered each spring.

CHEM 321 - Physical Chemistry I: Thermodynamics (1.25)

Classical thermodynamics and its applications in chemistry. Prerequisites:  CHEM 202, PHYS 101 or 105, MATH 176. Offered each fall.

CHEM 322 - Physical Chemistry II: Kinetics

Kinetic molecular theory, mass transport, experimental and theoretical chemical kinetics. Prerequisites:  CHEM 202, PHYS 102 or 106, MATH 177.  Offered each spring.

CHEM 323 - Quantum Mechanics (Cross-listed with PHYS 407)

Wave mechanics, the Schroedinger equation, operator formalism, the harmonic oscillator, the hydrogen atom, angular momentum, spin, scattering theory, chemical bonding, electromagnetic interaction. Prerequisite: PHYS 304. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 324 - Statistical Physics (Cross-listed with PHYS 408)

Introduces central princi­ples underlying thermodynamic properties found in large collections of atoms and molecules (i.e. systems with many degrees of freedom). A core pillar of the major, Statistical Physics is recommended for any student considering graduate school in Physics, and for Chemistry Majors, reinforcing key elements of Physical Chemistry. Prerequisite: PHYS 207 or CHEM 332. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 332 - Inorganic Chemistry

An introduction to the fundamentals of inorganic chemistry including atomic structure; metallic, ionic, and covalent substances; acids and bases; coordination compounds; and descriptive chemistry of the elements. Students will use electronic structure, modern bonding theories, and models (tangible, virtual, and theoretical) to systematically understand the physical and chemical properties of inorganic substances. Prerequisite: CHEM 202. Offered each spring.

CHEM 380 - Advanced Inorganic Synthesis and Analysis (1) (W)

Individualized projects which emphasize techniques of advanced inorganic synthesis and instrumental analysis. Prerequisites: CHEM 301 and 321.  Offered each spring.

CHEM 397 - Internship in Chemistry

Internships in scientific research centers or industrial laboratories. Prerequisites: sophomore status and consent of the department chair. This course does not meet major requirements. Internship offered for 0.5 or 1.0 course units. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 413 - Advanced Organic Chemistry

A detailed examination of selected classical and modern topics within organic chemistry. Topics may include pericyclic reactions, spectroscopic methods of structure determination, physical-organic chemistry, synthetic transformations and strategy, and bio-organic/medicinal chemistry. Prerequisites: C- or better in CHEM 312. Offered alternate years.

CHEM 414 - Biochemistry I (1) (1.25)

The fundamentals of biochemistry, including an exploration of biomolecules and an introduction to experimental techniques. An emphasis is placed on understanding the structure and function of proteins, enzyme kinetics and regulation, nucleic acid chemistry, and bioenergetics.  Offered for 1.0 unit without lab or for 1.25 units with optional four-hour laboratory. Prerequisite: CHEM 312 (grade of C- or better) or consent of instructor and chair. Offered each fall.

CHEM 415 - Biochemistry II (W)

A continuation of Chemistry 414. Topics include the major catabolic and anabolic pathways, the integration and regulation of these pathways, cell signaling and biochemical genetics. The majority of the readings for this course will come from the current primary literature. Prerequisite: CHEM 414. Offered each spring.

CHEM 432 - Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

A detailed examination of advanced topics in inorganic chemistry. Topics will include the quantum atom and electronic states; the application of molecular symmetry and group theory to spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography; the mechanisms of inorganic reactions; bioinorganic chemistry; and catalysis. Prerequisites: CHEM 332 or consent of the instructor. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 470 - Special Topics in Chemistry (.5) (1)

Designed to offer topics not normally covered by the chemistry curriculum. Topics offered for 1.0 units may be used as elec­tives toward the chemistry major or minor and two 0.5 unit topics may together serve as an elective. May be repeated for credit if subject matter is different. Prerequisite: varies by topic. Offered occasionally.

CHEM 495 - Directed Study (.5) (1)

Individualized directed readings on a topic of interest to the student which is not normally a part of the curriculum. The work may include a laboratory component. It may also include the requirement for the preparation of a significant paper which brings together the results of the study. Offered for 0.5 or 1.0 course unit. Prerequisite: consent of instructor. Offered each semester.

CHEM 499 - Research/Thesis (.5) (1) (W)

Directed or independent study of a specialized topic which may include laboratory research. May be repeated for a maximum of two course units. Prerequisites: junior standing, four previous course units in chemistry, or consent of instructor. Offered each semester.

Ram Mohan - Wendell and Loretta Hess Endowed Professor of Chemistry and Chair of Chemistry

Department - Chemistry