Chemistry Department


Courses of Study

CH115f    The Science of Crime Over the last century, science has changed how crime has been committed, investigated, and written about. We study crime, including violent crime, while cultivating writing, critical analysis, and research skills. Frequent short essays explore topics surrounding both true and fictional crimes, including characterization of trace evidence, mechanisms of toxicology, DNA profiling, and ethical responsibilities in the forensic laboratory. Four credit hours. N, W1. Millard
[CH121]    Earth Systems Chemistry I The Earth is a dynamic chemical reactor that changes on timescales of seconds to millions of years through natural and anthropogenic forcings. This two-semester sequence explores fundamental chemistry principles, including the structure of the atom, chemical bonding and reactivity, chemical equilibria, and thermodynamics through the lens of Earth's 4.56-billion-year history. By constructing quantitative models of Earth systems, students also learn how Earth processes operate over time and space, how they shape the environments in which we live, and the theoretical and practical limits of resource utilization. Students with prior credit for Chemistry 141, 142, or 147 cannot receive credit for this course. Prerequisite: Students with prior credit for Chemistry 141, 142, or 147 cannot receive credit for this course. Four credit hours. N, Lb.
[CH122]    Earth Systems Chemistry II The Earth is a dynamic chemical reactor that changes on timescales of seconds to millions of years through natural and anthropogenic forcing. This two-semester sequence explores fundamental chemistry principles, including the structure of the atom, chemical bonding and reactivity, chemical equilibria, and thermodynamics through the lens of Earth's 4.56-billion-year history. By constructing quantitative models of Earth systems, students also learn how Earth processes operate over time and space, how they shape the environments in which we live, and the theoretical and practical limits of resource utilization. Prerequisite: Chemistry 121. Four credit hours. N, Lb.
CH141f    General Chemistry I Fundamental principles of chemistry including atomic theory, stoichiometry, solution chemistry, gas laws, thermochemistry, chemical bonding, and intermolecular forces. Does not assume prior knowledge in chemistry. Students will become proficient at using pre-calculus-level quantitative skills in a scientific context and will master the interface between narrative and mathematical problem solving. The laboratory will familiarize students with experimental techniques and the accumulation and analysis of experimental data. Students with prior credit for Chemistry 121 or 147 cannot receive credit for this course. Lecture, discussion, and laboratory. Prerequisite: Students with prior credit for Chemistry 121 or 147 cannot receive credit for this course. Four credit hours. N, Lb. King, Madison
CH142s    General Chemistry II Explores the fundamental principles of chemistry including chemical equilibria, thermodynamics, kinetics, electrochemistry, and radioactivity. Students will become proficient at using pre-calculus-level quantitative skills in a scientific context and will master the interface between narrative and mathematical problem solving. The laboratory will familiarize students with experimental techniques and the accumulation and analysis of experimental data. Students with prior credit for Chemistry 122 or 147 cannot receive credit for this course. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisite: Chemistry 141. Students with prior credit for Chemistry 122 or 147 cannot receive credit for this course. Four credit hours. N, Lb. McKinney, Rice
CH143f    Turbo Chemistry A recitation section designed to amplify the material covered in General Chemistry lecture with extra challenging homework, practice exams, and required group problem sets. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor. One credit hour. King
[CH144]    Turbo Chemistry A recitation section designed to amplify the material covered in General Chemistry lecture with extra challenging homework, practice exams, and required group problem sets. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor. One credit hour.
CH147fs    Comprehensive General Chemistry Introductory chemistry course with content similar to Chemistry 141 and 142 but in a single semester. Suitable for students with strong high school chemistry preparation. Students will become proficient at using pre-calculus-level quantitative skills in a scientific context and mastering the interface between narrative and mathematical problem solving. The laboratory will familiarize students with experimental techniques and the accumulation and analysis of experimental data. Structured to fulfill the general chemistry requirement for medical school and counts as both Chemistry 141 and 142 for course prerequisites. Prerequisite: Students with prior credit for Chemistry 121, 122, 141 or 142 cannot receive credit for this course. Previously listed as Chemistry 131. Four credit hours. N, Lb. Conry, Rice
CH241f    Organic Chemistry I Exploration of the relationships among structure, reactivity, and synthesis of organic compounds. The lecture portion introduces atoms and molecules, orbitals and bonding, the chemistry of alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, and other functional groups, stereochemistry, ring systems, substitution and elimination reactions, and kinetics and equilibria. The laboratory involves the use of common techniques used by chemists, instrumentation, and molecular modeling. The goals are to help students think critically, solve problems, and write effectively. Prerequisite: Chemistry 122, 142, or 147. Four credit hours. Thamattoor
CH242s    Organic Chemistry II Theories encountered in Chemistry 141, 142 are used as the basis for a detailed study of the relationships among structure, reactivity, and synthesis of organic compounds. Lecture, discussion, and laboratory. The laboratory explores the use of separation techniques, synthesis, and spectral techniques in organic chemistry. Prerequisite: Chemistry 241. Four credit hours. Katz
CH261s    Chemistry of Aqueous Environments Students explore how the Earth's marine and freshwater aqueous environments are shaped by physical, chemical, and biological processes and interactions with the atmosphere, lithosphere, and biosphere. We investigate the fundamental equilibrium and kinetic processes that control a variety of aqueous chemical phenomena relevant for environmental systems at a range of spatial and temporal scales, including acid base chemistry, redox reactions, solid and gas solubility, and reaction rates and mechanisms. Concepts of mass and charge balance are used to calculate chemical speciation in complex systems. Issues such as acid deposition, ocean acidification, eutrophication, water purification, and the fate and toxicity of heavy metals are discussed in the context of natural environmental processes. Prerequisite: Chemistry 122, 142, or 147. Four credit hours. King
CH263f    Atmospheric Chemistry An investigation of Earths atmosphere and the chemical and physical principles that shape it. Fundamental processes that determine atmospheric composition and climate, including multistep reaction mechanisms, chemical kinetics, molecular spectroscopy, photolysis, and heterogeneous chemistry, are introduced. Specific topics treated will include atmospheric composition, structure, and motion; element cycling; the transfer of solar and longwave radiation; stratospheric composition and chemistry; tropospheric oxidation processes; air pollution; and the role of human activity in global change. Prerequisite: Chemistry 122, 142 or 147. Four credit hours. McKinney
[CH278]    Joules to Dollars Listed as Economics 278. Four credit hours. N.
CH297j    Fate and Effects of Organic Pollutants in the Ocean An examination of how the physico-chemical properties of organic pollutants determine their fate in the ocean. We discuss how the environmental behavior and ecotoxicity of legacy and novel chemicals (petroleum, pesticides, microplastics, "forever-chemicals") are influenced by fundamental processes like partitioning, biodegradation, and photodegradation. Lecture, discussions of recent papers, as well as laboratory projects will be involved. Prerequisite: Chremistry 241. Three credit hours. Aeppli
CH341f    Physical Chemistry: Thermodynamics and Kinetics The laws and theories of chemical reactivity and the physical properties of matter. Emphasis is placed on chemical equilibrium, molecular bonding, and the rates of chemical reactions. Major topics: thermodynamics, solutions, and reaction kinetics. Gaining facility with abstraction through building mathematical models, working through the implications of those models, and assessing the validity and inherent errors in the ability of the models to predict and explain physical phenomena are the primary goals. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisite: Chemistry 122, 142, or 147; Mathematics 122 or 162; and Physics 145. Chemistry 342 may be taken before 341 with permission of the instructor. Five credit hours. Drozd
CH342s    Physical Chemistry: Quantum and Statistical Mechanics The laws and theories of chemical reactivity and the physical properties of matter. Emphasis is placed on chemical equilibrium, molecular bonding, and the rates of chemical reactions. Major topics: quantum mechanics, spectroscopy, and statistical mechanics. Gaining facility with abstraction through building mathematical models, working through the implications of those models, and assessing the validity and inherent errors in the ability of the models to predict and explain physical phenomena are the primary goals. Lecture only. Prerequisite: Chemistry 341. 342 may be taken before 341 with permission of instructor. Four credit hours. Madison
CH362fs    Medical Biochemistry Listed as Biochemistry 362. Four credit hours. Millard, Peck
CH367f    Biochemistry of the Cell I Listed as Biochemistry 367. Four or five credit hours. Rice
CH368s    Biochemistry of the Cell II Listed as Biochemistry 368. Four or five credit hours. Millard
CH378s    Molecular Biology Listed as Biochemistry 378. Four credit hours. van Oers
CH411f    Inorganic Chemistry Current models and concepts in inorganic chemistry are discussed, with an emphasis on general trends and periodic properties of the chemical elements and their compounds. Topics include bonding and structure, acid-base theories, redox properties, molecular symmetry, and coordination compounds. Students will expand their knowledge of fundamental chemical principles as well as their ability to critically think about, communicate, and apply this knowledge in problem solving. Lecture only. Prerequisite: Chemistry 122, 142, or 147 and junior or higher standing. Chemistry 342 is recommended. Four credit hours. Conry
CH413f    Inorganic Laboratory Studies Synthesis and characterization of inorganic and organometallic compounds of both the representative and transition elements. Discussion and laboratory. Co-requisite: Chemistry 411. Two credit hours. Conry
CH431s    Mechanistic Organic Chemistry Based on original research articles and designed to teach students to think critically about published material. The readings cover topics such as chemical bonding, molecular orbital theory, and aromaticity, the use of isotopes in determining reaction mechanisms, reactions of atomic carbon, matrix isolation spectroscopy, laser flash photolysis, the influence of structure on reactivity, the role of thermodynamics and kinetics in reactions, linear free energy relationships, and unusual molecules. Students are instructed on computational modeling of chemical reactions, structures, and spectroscopic properties and are taught to retrieve information from the chemical literature. Prerequisite: Lecture only. Chemistry 242 or equivalent. Four credit hours. Thamattoor
[CH432]    Advanced Organic Chemistry The logic and methods of organic synthesis are explored. The elementary organic reactions studied in Chemistry 241, 242 are augmented and used in the synthesis of biologically and chemically important molecules. Lecture only. Prerequisite: Chemistry 242 or equivalent. Four credit hours.
CH442s    Computational Chemistry Exploring the fundamental physical forces acting on electrons and atoms in molecules to better understand chemical properties and reactivity. Students will build on foundational knowledge of quantum mechanics and thermodynamics to understand how and why computer simulations can offer such chemical insights, deepening their own understanding of reaction mechanisms, condensed phase behavior, and aspects of spectroscopy. After learning the principles of molecular dynamics and electronic structure calculations, students will design and propose a computational experiment to address a research question. Co-requisite: Chemistry 342. Two credit hours. Madison
CH444s    Advanced Methods in Biochemistry A detailed look at current trends in experimental research at the interface of chemistry and biology. Critical analyses of recent literature, identification of important problems in the field, and development of proposals to address these problems will be of primary focus. Problem-solving assessments will include both written and oral communication skills. Topics will include proteomics, chemical biology, and advanced enzymology. Prerequisite: Biochemistry 367 (with laboratory) and 368 (the latter may be taken concurrently), and a W1 course. Four credit hours. W3. Rice
CH452s    Problems in Chemical Analysis An exploration of how physical principles and analytical techniques are used to address research questions by engaging in a semester long, team-based project in which students design, construct, and evaluate a solution to a current chemical analysis problem. In developing a solution, students will draw on fundamental physical chemical concepts, principles, and techniques learned in prior chemistry courses along with independent literature research, and apply advanced quantitative methods, such as potentiometric, spectroscopic, and computational techniques for chemical analysis. Students also gain experience with experimental design, team-based problem solving, and project management, and written and oral communication of scientific results. Prerequisite: Chemistry 341. Four credit hours. King, McKinney
CH483f, 484s    Honors in Research in Chemistry Laboratory and library work involving a senior and one or more chemistry faculty members on a clearly defined project that results in an honors thesis. Prerequisite: Permission of the department and recommendation of the faculty sponsor. One to four credit hours. Faculty
CH491f, 492s    Independent Study Laboratory work of a research nature may be arranged with the instructor. One to four credit hours. Faculty
CH493f, 494s    Senior Seminar Discussion of topics of current interest in all areas of chemistry. Presentations by invited speakers from other colleges, universities, and industry. Seniors give a presentation on their research each semester. Prerequisite: Junior or senior standing as a chemistry major. One credit hour. Conry