Course Descriptions & Syllabi

Course Descriptions & Syllabi

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Note: some or all of the courses in the subjects marked as "Transfer" can be used towards a transfer degree: Associate of Science and Arts or Associate of Engineering Science at DACC. Transferability for specific institutions and majors varies. Consult a counselor for this information.

Areas of Study | | CHEM100 syllabus

COURSE TITLE:Introduction to Chemistry (for Non-Science Majors)
IAI CODE(S): P1 902L
DELIVERY MODE:Hybrid, In-Person

A one-semester introductory course in basic concepts and language of chemistry for the non-science major. Topics include general principles and theories of chemistry, including fundamentals of inorganic and organic chemistry, atomic structure and states of matter, bonding, stoichiometry, acid-base concepts, periodicity and solution chemistry. Face-to-Face class meets for 3 hours of lecture and 2 hours of lab per week. Hybrid course is taught with an online lecture and meets 2 hours per week--2 hours for lab. Lectures for the Hybrid sections use recorded lectures that mirror the content of the Face-to-Face class.

Placement into MATH107.

NOTES: A lab is required for this course. Some sections will require a separate lab, while other sections will include the lab.

Students completing this course will exhibit knowledge and competency in describing properties and reactivity of matter through words, calculations and experimental procedures. The student must be able to:
  • Measure physical properties using appropriate measurement tools and units
    • Determine the length, mass, volume, temperature or density of an object given proper tools or data, either in the lab or in story problems
    • Express terms of length, mass, volume, temperature or density in standard metric units
    • Convert between the metric and English system using dimensional analysis
    • Express data or calculated physical data in the correct number of significant figures using rounding and scientific notation based on the limits of the data or the instrument
  • Describe and categorize types of matter using proper vocabulary and nomenclature by
    • Listing the characteristics of solids, liquids and gases
    • Distinguishing between and listing examples of physical properties, chemical properties, physical changes and chemical changes
    • Identifying an element as a metal, nonmetal or metalloid given a Periodic Table
    • Identifying a compound as either ionic or molecular given the compound's name or chemical formula
    • Naming a compound appropriately using either the prefix or stock system of naming given the chemical formula
  • Apply basic concepts and principles of atomic structure and bonding through
    • Descriptions of the various models of the atom
    • Identification of the orbitals in each energy level and the electrons that occupy those orbitals
    • Drawing correct Lewis dot diagrams to aid in the drawing of Lewis structures of chemical compounds
    • Predicting properties and chemical reactivity of elements or compounds based on trends of the Periodic Table
    • Predicting molecular shapes using VSEPR Theory
  • Evaluate chemical reactivity of chemical species by:
    • Writing balanced, chemical equations
    • Distinguishing between different types of chemical reactions based on the reagents and conditions given
    • Calculating molecular weights, percent composition, mole ratios, limiting reagents and yields of chemical reactions through stoichiometry and the use of chemical formulas and balanced chemical reactions
  • Apply knowledge of chemical properties and reactivity in a laboratory setting by:
    • Creating appropriate experimental setups with glassware and equipment
    • Completing experiments in a time-efficient manner
    • Describing experiment success through calculations of percent error and percent yield
    • Summarizing the results and analyzing experimental methods through writing

  • Standards for Measurements (10%, Weeks 1-2)
    • Measurement of length, mass, volume, temperature and density
    • Conversion of measurements between the metric and English system using dimensional analysis
    • Rounding numbers, significant figures and scientific notation
  • Classification and Properties of Matter, Early Atomic Theory, Nomenclature (15%, Weeks 3-7)
    • States of matter, compounds and elements, substances and mixtures
    • Metals, nonmetals, metalloid, their names and symbols
    • Physical and chemical changes
    • The basic structure of the atom and the scientists who made major contributions to the development of the model
    • How protons, neutrons and electrons are arranged in the atom and ions
    • Calculating average atomic mass using the various isotopic weights and relative abundances
    • Nomenclature of inorganic compounds
    • Names of polyatomic ions and the compounds they form
  • Quantitative Composition of Compounds (10%, Week 8)
    • The mole, molar mass, and percent composition of compounds
    • The empirical formula of compounds
  • Chemical Equations (15%, Weeks 9-10)
    • Writing and balancing double displacement reactions
    • Writing and balancing single displacement reactions
    • Predicting whether the reaction forms products or not
  • Modern Atomic Theory and the Periodic table. The Chemical Bond (15%, Weeks 11-12)
    • The electromagnetic spectrum and the spectrum of hydrogen
    • The Bohr atom, energy levels and sublevels
    • Electronic structure: s, p, d, f as it relates to the periodic table
    • Lewis dot diagrams
    • Ionic and covalent bonding
    • Polarity of molecules
  • Solutions, acids, bases, salts (15%, Weeks 13-14)
    • Solubility as it relates to polar and nonpolar materials
    • Calculations using molarity
    • Definition of acids, bases and the products of neutralization
    • Electrolytes and the percent of dissociation
    • Titration
    • Calculating pH
  • The Gaseous state of matter (10%, Week 15)
    • The kinetic molecular theory
    • Boyle's Law
    • Charles' Law
  • Introduction to Organic Chemistry (10%, Week 16)
    • The carbon atom and hydrocarbons
    • Structural formulas and isomers
    • Aliphatic and aromatic compounds
    • Alcohols, ethers, aldehydes, ketones, carboxylic acids esters, and their reactions
    • Nomenclature

All labs are conducted in a wet-lab and are hands-on.

Lab Text/Manual Title: Foundations of Chemistry in the Laboratory, by Morris Hein and Susan Arena, 14th Edition—Custom.
Activity Title Description of Lab Student Outcome/Skills Delivery Method Activity Time
Lab 1 - Lab Introduction and Safety Orientation Students will review safety information, as well as laboratory policies and procedures.

Completion of the safety orientation is mandatory before a student may participate in any future lab experiments
Locate and discuss proper usage of safety equipment.

List the requirements for proper clothing and footwear in the lab.

List the safety rules for the lab and identify potential violations in a given scenario.

Explain why safety is important in the lab and in their future careers.

*Note: The safety lab must be completed before a student may complete any other experiment.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab * (Optional depending on weeks of the semester) - Laboratory Techniques Introduction to general lab techniques, such as bending and cutting glass, fire polishing, filtering, precipitation, and Bunsen burner use. Describe basic use and principles of Bunsen burners, vacuum filtration, and precipitation.

Demonstrate safe usage of a Bunsen burner to bend glass and fire polish.

Use vacuum filtration to isolate a precipitate.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 2 - Measurements Measurements of mass, length and volume are performed using balances, rulers, and graduated cylinders. Apply knowledge of precision and accuracy in laboratory measurements.

Take measurements using rulers, balances, graduated cylinders and thermometers.

Determine the densities of known and unknown substances.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 3 - Freezing Points - Graphing of Data Students measure the freezing point of Glacial Acetic Acid and observe the effects of stirring and impurities on the freezing point. Data are graphed to compare the trials. Measure the freezing point of a substance using a thermometer.

Observe the differences in freezing point with stirring, without stirring and the addition of an impurity.

Graph the change in temperature over time.

Interpret the differences in the graphs for each trial.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 4 - Calorimetry Students observe and calculate the transfer of energy by measuring the temperature change of water after adding a heated metal.

They use this information to calculate the specific heat of an unknown metal and determine its identity.
Heat a metal using a Bunsen burner safely.

Measure temperature changes using a thermometer.

Calculate the heat energy exchanged using the specific heat of water.

Determine the identity of an unknown metal by calculating its specific heat.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 5 - Water in Hydrates Students qualitatively and quantitatively isolate water from hydrated compounds. The isolated water is compared to pure water and the percent of water in a compound is calculated. This lab introduces percent composition. Isolate water from a hydrated compound using a Bunsen burner, test tube and a crucible.

Compare the composition of isolated water and pure water using Cobalt Chloride test strips.

Calculate the mass of water lost from a hydrated sample.

Calculate the percent of water in a hydrated compound.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 6 - Composition of Potassium Chlorate Students decompose potassium chlorate in a crucible to form potassium chlorate. The amount of oxygen lost is calculated as a percentage and compared to the theoretical value using percent error calculations. Describe a decomposition reaction.

Decompose potassium chlorate quantitatively in a crucible using a Bunsen burner.

Calculate the theoretical and experimental percentage of oxygen in potassium chlorate.

Describe experimental success using percent error.

Verify the formation of the product, KCl, by reacting the product, reactant and pure KCl with silver nitrate.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 7 - Single Displacement Reactions Students perform several single displacement reactions using metals and their aqueous solutions. The observations of their reactions are used to write the activity series. Determine the stronger reducing agent by reacting a metal with an aqueous solution containing metal cations.

Compare the reactivity of metals using their experimental observations.

Write out the activity series using their experimental results.
Hands on 2 hours;
Lab 8 - Double Displacement Reactions Students perform twelve double displacement reactions. The solubility rules are used to determine which products are solids, liquids, gases or aqueous. Students practice writing equations and predicting products of reactions. Record observations of several double displacement reactions.

Predict the products of chemical reactions and their state of matter.

Balance chemical reactions.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 9 - Quantitative Preparation of Potassium Chloride Students perform an acid-base reaction to form and isolate potassium chloride. The theoretical yield is calculated using stoichiometry, and is used to calculate percent error. Heat a reaction safely using a Bunsen burner.

Perform an acid-base reaction.

Calculate experimental and theoretical yield.

Describe reaction success through percent error.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 10 - Electromagnetic Energy and Spectroscopy Students study electromagnetic energy by observing waves, light spectra and absorption and emission. Calculate frequency and wavelength of waves generated with a spring.

Observe the differences in light emitted from hydrogen, neon, tungsten lamps, and fluorescent lamps.

Record changes in percent transmission of aqueous sample using a Spec-20 spectrophotometer.

Describe results graphically.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 11 - Lewis Structures and Molecular Models Students describe the shapes of molecules by drawing Lewis structures and determining their geometries using VSEPR theory. Draw Lewis structures of molecules.

Identify molecular geometries of molecules from their Lewis structure.

Determine which structures can have isomers or resonance.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 12 - Gases Examine the relationship between pressure and volume for gases by measuring the pressure and volume of a gas generated by the reaction of hydrochloric acid with magnesium. Collect hydrogen gas in a buret by reaction HCl with magnesium metal.

Measure the atmospheric pressure using a barometer.

Convert basic pressure and volume units.

Measure volume using a buret.

Isolate the partial pressure of a gas using Dalton’s Law of partial pressures.

Calculate an experimental molar volume.

Identify reasons an experimental molar volume does not match molar volume at STP.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 13 - Properties of Solutions Students observe basic solution properties, such as particle size; polarity; saturated, unsaturated and supersaturated solutions; and temperature. Determine the amount of solid dissolved in a solution by heating off water.

Compare an experimental value to a theoretical value for solubility by calculating mass percent.

Observe the mixing of solutions of varying polarities.

Describe the effects of temperature and particle size on solubility.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 14 - Titration I Students perform a a titration to determine the concentration of a solution. Perform an acid-base titration using an indicator.

Measure solution volume using a buret.

Calculate moles or volume using molarity.

Calculate the molarity of a solution.
Hands on 2 hours
Lab 15 - Chemical Equilibrium - Reversible Reactions Students perform several reactions that can be reversed based on Le Chatelier’s Principle. Define chemical equilibrium.

Define Le Chatelier’s Principle.

Describe the effect that concentration has on an equilibrium system based on observations of chemical reactions.

Determine the direction of an equilibrium shift based on the color of a chemical reaction.

Explain why a shift in a chemical reaction occurs.
Hands on 2 hours


Foundations of College Chemistry, by Morris Hein and Susan Arena 14th Edition.

Foundations of Chemistry in the Laboratory, by Morris Hein and Susan Arena, 14th Edition—Custom.

  • Supplies: Scientific calculator, splash goggles, appropriate lab clothing.
    • Safety Goggles:
      • Students must purchase their own laboratory safety goggles.
      • Goggles are available in the DACC Bookstore.
      • If you already have your own, they must offer complete protection of the side of your eyes. (Look for the markings "Z87" stamped on the goggles.) Lab safety glasses are not acceptable for students.
    • Calculator:
      • Any simple scientific or graphing calculator is sufficient.
    • Enclosed Shoes & Pants:
      • For lab days.
      • If you are not dressed appropriately you will not be allowed to participate.


Grading is based on a weighted percentage of five different categories with overall grade divisions at 90, 80, 70 and 60 percent. The five categories are:

Best three exams (of four or more) 40%
Lab experiments & assignments 20%
Best eight quizzes (of 9 or more) 10%
Homework Assignments 10%
Cumulative final exam 20%

Attendance is required and a student may be withdrawn from the class roster due to unexcused absences.

Laboratory work must be performed during the regularly scheduled laboratory period.

"Make-up" laboratory work at an alternate time will not be an option.

No credit will be given for laboratory data if the student was absent from that laboratory session

If a student has a valid excuse for missing a lecture or laboratory class, credit for the missed period may be arranged with the instructor.

It will not be "automatic".


All students must pass the laboratory portion of the class in order to pass the course.

The final exam will include all the material that is covered in the semester. Every student is required to take the final exam at the scheduled time.

A curve may be applied at the instructor's discretion.


Membership in the DACC community brings both rights and responsibility. As a student at DACC, you are expected to exhibit conduct compatible with the educational mission of the College. Academic dishonesty, including but not limited to, cheating and plagiarism, is not tolerated. A DACC student is also required to abide by the acceptable use policies of copyright and peer-to-peer file sharing. It is the student’s responsibility to become familiar with and adhere to the Student Code of Conduct as contained in the DACC Student Handbook. The Student Handbook is available in the Information Office in Vermilion Hall and online at:

Any student who feels s/he may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact the Testing & Academic Services Center at 217-443-8708 (TTY 217-443-8701) or stop by Cannon Hall Room 103. Please speak with your instructor privately to discuss your specific accommodation needs in this course.

Fall 2019

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