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Frequently asked questions


									CHEM 204                                                                                                            Spring 2010

Course Information

Instructors: Prof. Martin Gruebele and Prof. Nguyet Trieu Thi                           Course Instructors in Vietnam:
emails: and                       Prof. Nguyet Trieu Thi
                                                                                        Mr. Ha

Notes and other materials appear at:

Welcome to Chem 204! This is the second semester of the accelerated introductory chemistry course at the Hanoi
University of Science. It will be very intense and tough, but hopefully also fun class - at least, we'll try our best to make it so.

Chemistry is deeply connected to physics, biology and engineering. It can be very fundamental, but also very practical, since
it is the science concerned with the makeup, properties and reactions of materials, ranging from the concrete in a building
foundation, to etched silicon wafers used in IC manufacture, to organic compounds used as AIDS drugs. Although two
semesters can barely scratch the surface of all the interesting properties of substances used in industry and research today, we
can at least study some of the general properties of materials and their transformations.

In this booklet you will find the following three things to help you along the way:

1) A list of frequently asked questions about the course, and answers, on pages 2-4.
          1)       Who do I go to with questions?
          2)       What material will be covered?
          3)       What about the book and lecture materials?
          4)       What work do I have to do to complete in this course?
          5)       How are quizzes and homework handled/graded?
          6)       What is the grading scheme?
          7)       What is on the quizzes?
          8)       What's on the midterm exam?
          9)       What is on the final exam?
          10)      How important is the homework?

2) A Lecture Schedule summarizing lecture dates, exams, topics covered, and reading assignments on pages 5 and 6.

3) Taking lecture notes is a good idea: things written down are remembered better. However, for your convenience, you'll
find a set of lecture notes on the 204 website. They provide a condensed summary of the lecture material with an emphasis
on the most important and basic points, in the same order as the lectures. Some of the material covered in depth in the
lectures and notes is only briefly touched upon in the book, and vice versa. It is very important that you master both the
lecture and the book material. We don't always repeat in lecture what's in the book, since we figure you're all smart enough
to read and understand the book. Use both the book and the lecture summary sheets to study for the exams.

You should file these lecture notes with your own handwritten notes, so you have them handy during lecture and while you
review for exams. Gruebele will also have them up on a Powerpoint presentation to complement the blackboard.

Frequently asked questions:
1) Who do I go to with questions?
You have three resources: for questions about the homework, it’s usually best to first work together with other students.
After that, see the course assistant, or the course instructors Prof. Gruebele or Prof. Thieu or Mr. Ma . We will help out with
homework, general questions about chemistry, or anything else about the course you need help with during office hours in
A220 CLSA.

2) What material will be covered?
Check the lecture schedule on pages 4-5 in this booklet for a summary of lecture topics with dates, reading assignments from
the lecture notes, and homework assignments to be turned in the next day.

CHEM 204                                                                                                       Spring 2010

3) What about the book and lecture materials?
The book for 204 is "Zumdahl, Chemical Principles" Like 202 with Prof. Lisy, we will not go exactly in the order of the
book. Reading assignments for each lecture are listed in the lecture schedule, and should be completed before lecture (except
the first of course!), so you are prepared for the lecture material. This is a university-level course, so the lecture will NOT
simply repeat what's in the book, but explore the topics starting from there. The lecture notes at the end of this syllabus
follow the order of lecture.

4) What work do I have to complete for this course?
You have to attend all lectures (3 each day, except on exam days), do assigned reading, turn in the homework assignments
and mutually grade them on a 0-2 scale. You have to take all quizzes, take the midterm exam and the final exam.

5) How is homework handled/graded
The homework consists of two parts: one exercises shown in bold that you must turn in each day. These you will grade in a
mutual grading session on a scale from 0-2 (0=not turned in or steps not shown, 1=all steps shown, little mistake, 2=all steps
shown, perfect solution). The answer is at the end of the book and you get credit ONLY for showing the steps.

6) What is the grading scheme ?
In this course, you are responsible for TA homework assignments, quiz attendance, quizzes given by your TA, 2 hour exams,
and a final exam which includes a take-home final paper. The breakdown is shown below:

                                  Hour exam                     30%     (the exam on a 0-100 RAW scale)
                                  3 quizzes                     10%     (each quiz on a 6 point scale)
                                  Homework                       5%     (on a 0-2 scale each)
                                  Final exam                    55%     (weighted slightly towards last 1/2 of course material)

Grading will be on a the same scale as in the US. Last year students worked hard, and most got As and Bs, with only a few
Cs and no D. Please work hard again! There will be no scaling of scores. Typically, exam averages are around 70/100, with
standard deviations around 15, so 70 and up is around a B, 80 and up around an A. Quiz averages are around 7/10 with
standard deviations around 3.

7) What is on the quizzes?
The quizzes are three written problems (not multiple choice); 3 quizzes will be given, and you will have 20 minutes to do
each quiz. The quizzes usually cover material from the previous day, or the day before that, NEVER from the same day.
Some old quizzes and solutions will be available on the web, so you have some examples.

8) What is on the midterm exam?
The midterm exam will have about 21 multiple choice questions (about 80% of score) , and one written problem (about 20%
of score). A word problem is included because in real life, there's no pre-selection of multiple choice answer around. You
will get 1 hour and 30 minutes to do the exam.
The lecture notes are a very good study guide in addition to your textbook. As a rule, you are responsible for all the material
covered in lecture, lecture notes, reading assignments in the textbook.
Solutions will be posted on the web after every exam, and Professor Thieu and Mr. Ma will go over the most difficult of the
problems in quiz section. Grades are usually available the next day.
DO the sample exams that will be posted on the web before the actual hour exam. We will further help you prepare for the
word problem by giving you a quiz similar in style to the word problem the week before the exam, so you get some practice.

9) What is on the final exam ?
The final exam will be 2.5 hours long and consists of approximately 60 multiple choice questions without a word problem.
The multiple choice part will cover all the lecture material and all homework problems assigned during the semester evenly.
A slightly larger fraction of questions will cover the last lectures (those not tested on the midterm exam).

10) How important is the homework ?
The homework is not heavily weighted at 5%, and only a few of the questions assigned to be turned in, but it is VERY
IMPORTANT: only through problem-solving are you going to learn the concepts you need for the exams. Skipping the
assigned homework is certain to lower your exam scores, which make up 80% of the course grade. On the contrary, if you
find you missed a problem after checking the answer guide or when the TA goes over the problems, assign yourself another
similar one. Don't look at the solutions manual before you have worked hard on a problem. There is no solution manual for

CHEM 204                                                                                                 Spring 2010

the exams until afterwards, when it's too late. Homework is assigned every day, and due the following day for grading by
you and other students.

CHEM 204                                                                                    Spring 2010

                Lecture Schedule, Quizzes, Exams and Reading Assignments
-You must do ALL homework, but you turn in only one bold exercise each day. You will grade each
other after the day’s lecture. Make an effort to grade carefully and honestly: you will have to supervise
and grade people later in your career, and it must be fair.

-Do the reading assignment before lecture. Book: Zumdahl “Chemical Principles”. The format is
shown as “Chapter.section” You also must look over the lecture notes, shown as “L” with page number.

Date    Topic                              Book                Lecture     Zumdahl homework (shown
                                                               Notes       on day assigned; it is due the
                                                                           next lecture for grading)
1. Introduction
3/15     The meaning of temperature          Ch 5 (ideal gas) L2       -
2. Chemical kinetics
3/17     Four factors governing kinetics; 15.1,2,8            L3       15.12, 15
         catalysis I; differential rate laws
3/19     Integrated rate laws;               15.3,4           L3, L4   15.20, 24, 37, 54
         the rate coefficient I: collisions
3/22     The rate coeff. II: Boltzmann       15.8             L4       15.57
         factor, transition state
3/24: First quiz
3/26     Mechanisms, measuring               15.8             L5       15.64, 65
         kinetics, catalysts II
3/29     Equilibrium constant;               15.6, 7          L6, L7   15.71, 92
         microscopic reversibility
3. Chemical Thermodynamics
3/31     Closed equilibrium systems and 9.1, 7, 8, 10.2       L7, L8   9.16, 20, 68
         the three laws; energy, heat,
4/2: Second quiz
4/5      Energy, Enthalpy, Hess' law,        9.2-6            L9       9.25, 32, 47, 63,
4/7      Entropy I: a quantitative           10.1             L10, L11 10.22, 25, 27
         measure of disorder
4/9      Entropy II: why S = k ln(Ω) and 10.3-5,8             L12      10.13, 19
         dS = dQrev/T
4/12     Reversible processes and free       10.6, 7          L12      10.20, 27
4/14     Free energies of reaction           10.9-10          L13      10.37, 40ab
April 23: Midterm Exam covers up to and including 4/14 – study previous week
4/26     The free energy and Le              10.11-12         L14, L15 10.49, 61, 63, 66
         Chåtelier’s principle; real gases
         and phase transitions I
4/28     Thermodynamics of phase             5.10, 16.10,11   L15      16.80, 89, 91
         transitions II
4/30     Colligative properties              17.1, 4, 5, 6    L16      5.77, 80, 81
5/3      Nonideal solutions and                               L17      17.44, 46, 58, 65

CHEM 204                                                                                 Spring 2010

5/5: Third quiz
4. Electrochemistry
5/7      Redox reactions; electrical work 11.1-2              L18         11.18ab
5/10     Redox potentials and free         11.2-3             L19
         energy: Nernst equation                                          11.19
5/12     Applying the Nernst equation      11.4               L19         11.37, 38
5/14     Batteries, fuel cells, corrosion, 11.5-8             L20         11.49, 51, 60b
         and electrolysis
5/18      X-ray crystallography            16.3               L25          16.40, 22.104
          (given by Prof. Gruebele)
5/19      The structure of DNA             22.6: p. 1055-     L26         -
          (given by Prof. Gruebele)        1059 only
5/20 & 5/21 Live demonstrations and review lectures by Prof. Gruebele, Prof. Nguyet Trieu Thi and Mr.
Monday, May 24: Final Exam, (covers all material) This exam is multiple choice only. Your grades
will be made available within the next few days.

Professor Gruebele will be happy to answer questions from students by email during the course,
and will visit for the last week to lecture on X-ray crystallography, do demonstrations, and
review material for the final exam.
Quizzes and Exams will be graded by Mr. Ha


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