Chem08 - Introductory Chemistry

Chemistry Department
Saint Mary's College of California





Class Prep



How to Succeed



Meeting Times: Mon/Wed/Thu/Fri 800-900am. Dante 220

Text: Chemistry (11th Ed.) by Chang. ISBN: 0073402680 Student Resources
An eText version is available at CourseSmart.

Prerequisites: High School Chemistry (or equivalent) and eligibility for enrollment in Math 13 based on the math placement exam.

Disability Services: "Student Disability Services extends reasonable and appropriate accommodations that take into account the context of the course and its essential elements for individuals with qualifying disabilities. Students with disabilities are encouraged to contact the Student Disability Services Office at (925) 631-4358 to set up a confidential appointment to discuss accommodation, policies, guidelines and available services."

Additional information regarding the services available may be found at Academic Advising and Achievement

Class Preparation: Before each class meeting you should 1) read the assigned chapter sections 2) watch the short (10-15 min) lecture video, and 3) take the reading PreQuiz. Reading and preparation videos are assigned on a daily basis and are required preparation for class! Please see the calendar for the daily reading. So for instance, to prepare for class on the 13th of Feb you should, at least the day before, look ahead on the Calendar page for the assigned reading and video resources for the 13th. Most of the class will be group work. I will circulate among the groups and give feedback and guidance. It will be interactive and fun. How much you gain from class meetings will depend on how prepared you are to participate.

The reading PreQuizzes will be emailed to you by the evening before class. You can take the quiz anytime up until the start of class at 800am. Each reading quiz will take no more than 5-10 minutes and will be worth 3-5 pts.

Homework: Assigned chapter problems can be found from the Calendar Page and Assignments link above. Homework will be collected on a weekly basis each Wednesday. Make sure you have a copy of your homework that can be handed in and is separate from your notes. You should keep up with homework on a DAILY basis, therefore, the daily assignment is given on the calendar. Anyone needing help with homework assignments should visit me during normal office hours or schedule a one-on-one appointment. Other resources, such as chemSMC, will also be available to help students strengthen their problem-solving skills.

Homework assignments are designed to guide you in your study of the material and should be considered the minimum set of problems to do. It is up to you to work as many problems as necessary to clarify your understanding of any particular topic.

Chemistry Skills Mastery Center: The Chemistry Skills Mastery Center will be located in the lounge on the second floor of BROH and in BROH 114. It will meet Sunday through Thursday from 6-8 p.m. and be staffed by at least two people, either student tutors or a faculty member and a tutor. This center is not another lecture section but a place to learn study skills. The goal of the center is to provide a place for students to improve the skills needed to be successful in chemistry and other science courses. Students can attend the center as often as they wish and there will be 1 point awarded for each day the student attends up to a maximum of 30 points for the entire semester. Students must attend the Center for one hour to earn the point. If you have any questions about attending the Center, see your instructor.

Each week 1-2 extra credit problems will be handed out by the tutors in the ChemSMC. You should stop by ChemSMC to pick up the problems. Each problem will be worth 2-4 points. You must pick them up in the ChemSMC. Problems will be due the following week on Monday.

How to Succeed in this class:

  • Before each class
    • Read assigned chapter sections and watch online videos lectures/tutorials
  • In-class
    • be prepared to actively participate in small group discussion
    • Take clear notes recording your activities
  • After class
    • Do homework assignment (this should be done DAILY!)
    • Attend ChemSMC to get help with homework and pick up extra credit problems
  • Before exams
    • Rework (a second time) as many homework problems as possible, focusing on the problems you cannot start and finish without your notes or text

The first time you attempt a homework problem you will need to refer to example problems in your text and class. You may also need to look at the solution manual. This is fine. However, it is essential, that you go back and repractice the problems until you can do them without referring to any of the resources! If you can do that you will do brilliantly on the exams.

The importance of working problems cannot be overemphasized!

You are here at SMC to get the best possible education. Take advantage of the small class size and individual attention. Work together on assignments, attend ChemSMC, and see me in my office as often as possible.

Academic Honesty: Students are expected to do their own work on all exams and quizzes. Violations of this policy will be vigorously prosecuted according to SMC Academic Honesty Procedures.

Testing: Quizzes will be given every other Monday and will focus specifically on your understanding of the assigned problems. The quizzes will take no more than 10-15 minutes of class time. The quiz questions will be exact replicas of the homework problems. It is extremely important that you keep up with the reading and do ALL the homework on a daily basis.

There will be 3 one-hour long exams during the semester. The exams will test your ability to adapt and apply your understanding and problem-solving skills to new and somewhat unfamiliar situations, rather than ones patterned exactly like those you have seen before. Simply repeating facts or mechanically producing solutions to familiar problems will not help you excel. In fact, there will be some questions/problems on every exam that are a bit different than the ones presented in class or in the textbook.

The comprehensive final exam will be scheduled during final exam week at our alloted period (see schedule below). The final will be weighted more towards the last third of the semester but will be all inclusive.

Exam Dates

Exam #1 March 11 (Chapters 1-4)

Exam #2 April 15 (Chapters 5-7)

Exam #3 May 13 (Chapters 8-12)

Final Exam (All assigned Chapters) During Exam Week

Alternate exam arrangements will be considered only for excused absences with prior notification.

Grading: Your grade will be based on your performance on the reading PreQuizzes (3-5 pts each), 5 quizzes (15 pts each), three midterm exams (150 points each), a comprehensive final exam (200 points), and the homework credit (100 points). Total 900 points.

50 extra credit points will be available through attendance at ChemSMC and by handing in correct worked extra credit problems handed out by the tutors in the center.

Final letter grades will be assigned according to the percentage of points that you accumulate during the semester. The approximate ranges for letter grades will be:

A = 100-80% B = 79-65% C = 64-50% D = 49-35%

Your exact letter grade will be determined by a number of factors, including your performance on the final exam, the consistency of your performance during the term, and class participation.



Instructor Information

Prof. Jeffrey Sigman
Brosseau 312
(925) 268-0970
email is my preferred method of contact

Office Hours

M 9-11am
W 9-11am
W 1-2pm
Th 9-11am
by appointment





Vitamin A