Chemistry and Physics Course Descriptions

 

Course descriptions that are designated with a (S) fulfill theScientific Ways of Knowing requirement of the Core Curriculum.

Chemistry

 

CHEM 103: Chemistry and Public Policy (S)
Credits: 4
 

An introductory course for non-science majors who have little or no background in chemistry and minimal mathematical background. The chemical basis of environmental issues, nutrition, and genetic engineering will be discussed in their socioeconomic and political context. Laboratory exercises are designed to give students knowledge of scientific measurements and the reasoning required for interpreting experimental data. Emphasis will be on applying knowledge of chemistry to current public policy issues. Three hours lecture/discussion, two hours laboratory. Offered every Fall.

 

CHEM 106: Introduction to Forensic Science (S)
Credits: 4
 

An introductory course for non-science majors who have little or no background in chemistry and minimal mathematical background. The lecture portion of the course introduces basic chemical principles and their application to the collection, preservation and analysis of physical evidence. A course that focuses on the application of science in the criminal justice system. Emphasis will be placed on the common items of physical evidence encountered at crime scenes. We will study techniques of forensic analysis as well as procedures and practices relating to the proper collection and preservation of evidence. Laboratory activities will focus on techniques of analysis of evidence and on critical thinking. Three hours lecture, two hours laboratory. Offered alternate Springs.

 

CHEM 131-132: Principles of Chemistry (S)
Credits: 4 each
 

Examines the principles and concepts underlying chemical behavior. Topics covered include the periodic table of the elements, the gas laws, chemical reactions, molecular structure, acids and bases, kinetics, and thermodynamics. Lab work includes qualitative and quantitative analysis and validation of lecture principles through inquiry-based activities. Problem solving skills are emphasized throughout. Three hours lecture, three hours lab. Offered every year.

 

CHEM 201: Introduction to Chemical Information and Technical Communication
Credits: 1.5
 

Uses of electronic and hardbound chemical literature. Elements of research and writing in the chemical field. Ethical considerations in research. Students will be evaluated on written, oral, and poster presentation of library-based research. Prerequisites: CHEM 132 or equivalent.  

 

CHEM 215-216: Organic Chemistry (S)
Credits: 4 each
 

A two-semester introduction to the principles of organic chemistry. Focuses on the structure of organic compounds and how that structure determines reactivity. Laboratory work involves both preparative and mechanistic experiments as well as computer-based molecular modeling. Analytical methods include gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, and infrared, ultraviolet/visible and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Four hours lecture, three hours lab. Prerequisites: A “C-” or better in CHEM 132. Offered every year.  

 

CHEM 218: Medicinal Chemistry
Credits: 3
 

A study of medicinal compounds such as pharmacodynamic and chemotheraputic agents, vitamins and hormones. Considers the relationship of physio-chemical properties of drugs to their biological activity. Prerequisite: CHEM 215 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. Offered alternate years.

 

CHEM 241: Toxicology
Credits: 4
 

A survey of the scope and modern aspects of toxicology. Emphasizes clinical manifestations (symptoms and treatment) of acute, sub acute, and chronic intoxication, and current analytical methodology. Each type of poisoning studied is supported by actual case histories and analytical data. Prerequisite: CHEM 215 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.  

 

CHEM 242: Environmental Chemistry
Credits: 3
 

Examines sources and reactions of undesirable chemicals that have gotten into the atmosphere, water, and land through the activities of modern civilization. Investigates why these compounds are harmful to animal and plant life. Discusses technological responses (waste management, source reduction, and remediation) as well as societal and political responses. Prerequisite: CHEM 215  

 

CHEM 250: Introduction to Biochemistry
Credits: 3
 

A one semester course covering the principles of biochemistry. Topics include: protein structure, function and regulation; enzyme kinetics and mechanisms; intermediary metabolism; and molecular biology. Three hours lecture. Prerequisite: CHEM 215. This course does NOT meet the biochemistry requirement for majors in biochemistry or Forensic Science.

 

CHEM 301: Analytical Chemistry
Credits: 5
 

An introduction to the field of analytical chemistry. Topics to be included are experimental design, sample preparation, statistics, calibration strategies, standardization, and optimization. Methods covered include several titrimetric applications, gravimetric analysis, and electro-chemical methods of analysis. Three hours lecture, four hours laboratory. Prerequisites: CHEM 215-216. Offered alternate years.

 

CHEM 303: Instrumental Analysis
Credits: 4
 

An introduction to the use of spectroscopic and chromatographic methods of analysis. Topics to be included are basic principles of each type of instrumental analysis and the advantages and limitations of each method. Methods covered include HPLC, GC, GC-MS, as well as NMR, AA, IR, UV, VIS, and Fluorescence Spectroscopy. Three hours lecture, four hours laboratory. Prerequisites: CHEM 215-216, CHEM 301. Offered alternate years.

CHEM 307-308: Biochemistry
Credits: 4 each
 

An introduction to biochemistry. Topics include protein structure, enzyme kinetics and mechanisms, allosteric regulation of proteins, intermediary metabolism, DNA replication, transcription, translation, gene structure, expression, and evolution. Three hours lecture. Prerequisites: CHEM 215-216. Offered alternate years.

CHEM 313-314:  Physical Chemistry
Credits: 4 each
 

 Introduction to theoretical chemistry. Topics include: kinetics, laws of thermodynamics, chemical and phase equilibrium, electrochemistry, principles of quantum chemistry. Three hours lecture. Prerequisites: CHEM 131-132, PHYS 121-122.  


CHEM 317: Special Methods
Credits: 3
 

 Integrates general principles of education and the teaching process into the teaching of chemistry on a secondary level. Special focus on preparing and conducting laboratory experiments. Required of all who seek secondary certification in chemistry. Offered as needed.

CHEM 340: Inorganic Chemistry (S)
Credits: 4
 

Coverage includes periodicity and descriptive chemistry of the elements; symmetry, structure and bonding, solid-state chemistry and catalysis; reaction mechanisms of transition metal complexes; and spectroscopy. Prepares the student to understand current research in organic, organometallic and bioinorganic chemistry. Laboratory activities include synthesis and analysis of classical and organometallic complexes and solid-state compounds. Microscale, high temperature, light-activated and oxygen-free synthesis techniques will be employed. Analysis methods will include infrared, atomic absorption, visible, nuclear magnetic resonance, mass spectrometry, Three hours lecture, four hours laboratory. Prerequisite: CHEM 215, or permission of the instructor.  


CHEM 400: Honors  

Independent study during junior and senior years culminating in an honors thesis determined by the interests of the student. By Departmental invitation only.

CHEM 401: Chemistry Internship
Credits: 3 each
 

An off-campus experience to help the student to relate theories and skills to the practical aspects of a clinical or industrial laboratory. Requires on-site supervision by a faculty member, discussion with the laboratory director, and a written laboratory report. 

Forensic Sciences Internship (see CHEM 401)
Credits: 3 each  

An off-campus experience to help the student to relate theories and skills to the practical aspects of a forensic laboratory. Requires on-site supervision by a faculty member, discussion with the laboratory director, and a written laboratory report. The laboratory report for the second semester of internship will be equivalent to the Research Seminar Paper required of Chemistry and Biochemistry majors. An oral presentation will also be required. (See Academic Program/Internship)

CHEM 403-404: Cooperative Education (See Cooperative Education)

CHEM 405: Advanced Organic Chemistry
Credits: 3
 

An introduction to the field of physical organic chemistry with emphasis on qualitative molecular orbital theory, stereochemistry, and conformational analysis. Part of the course will focus on a topic in the current literature. Three hours lecture. Prerequisites: CHEM 215-216. Offered alternate years.

CHEM 410:  Advanced Instrumental Analysis
Credits: 2
 

Project-based lab experiences that will build on and expand analytical techniques developed in organic and analytical chemistry courses. Four hours lab. Prerequisites: CHEM 215-216, CHEM 301.
CHEM 413: Advanced Physical Chemistry
Credits: 3
Topics include: atomic and molecular structure, theoretical spectroscopy, statistical thermodynamics. Prerequisites: CHEM 313-314.

CHEM 481: Special Topics
Credits: 3
An in-depth study of selected topic areas in chemistry. Topics vary from year to year. May include a laboratory depending on the topic chosen. Requires permission of instructor since prerequisites vary.

CHEM 498: Research Seminar
Credits: 3
The major focus of this course is the preparation and presentation of a research paper. Research is undertaken on or off campus, during summer internships or during the school year, in any area of chemistry or biochemistry. Lecture topics include how to write the various sections of a scientific paper, how to access and document sources properly, and how to assemble a research poster. Other topics include how to approach a research question, reading the literature critically, ethics in research, interviewing for graduate school and industry, and public speaking.

Physics

 

PHYS 103: Earth Sciences (S)
Credits: 4
An introductory course investigating topics in geology (rocks, minerals, earth structures), oceanography (topography of the ocean floor, water circulation, coastal zones) and meteorology (air movement, climate changes, weather patterns.) Offered as needed.

PHYS 104: Astronomy (S)
Credits: 3
An introduction to the sky, the solar system, stellar evolution, deep space objects and cosmology as well as the tools used by astronomers to study the universe. Laboratory activities as well as the use of a 14" Celestron telescope and a planetarium instrument enhance the course material. Offered as needed.

PHYS 107: The Science of Music (S)
Credits: 3
An introduction to the science of musical sound. Topics include the production, reproduction, and transmission of sound, the structure of the human voice and ear, the acoustical foundations of musical scales and instrument tuning, the design of listening rooms and musical instruments. Laboratory activities enhance the course material. Offered as needed.

PHYS 121-122 Principles of Physics (S)
Credits: 4 each
A calculus-based introduction to the ideas of classical physics in which activities inform the lectures. Topics include mechanics, thermodynamics, wave motion and sound, electricity and magnetism, and light. Six hours of activity-based learning. Prerequisites: MATH 203-204 or MATH 211-212. PHYS 121. Offered every Fall; PHYS 122 Offered every Spring.