Humboldt State University ® Department of Chemistry

Richard A. Paselk

Chem 109 - General Chemistry - Spring 2011

Lecture Notes 1: January 19

Introduction to General Chemistry (Chem 109)


FYI - How to Study:

  • Most of what you will need to know will be covered in lecture - so it is very important to attend lectures and take good notes. (The web notes may be helpful here, but should not be considered a substitute. Rather, use them to flesh out your notes to see if you have missed material etc.)
  • In previous Chem 109 classes I have noted an apparent correspondence between attendance and grades. Do not assume that the web notes will substitute for attendance - most studnets need to come to lecture to succeed in this course!
  • The textbook is meant as a supplement and a source of problems, examples etc. You may find the author more understandable or more compatible with your style than me, so read the chapters. You are responsible for the materials in the text unless told otherwise!
  • You should do as many of the end of chapter exercises etc. in your text as it takes to become confident of your grasp of chemistry.
    • Note that quiz problems will be based directly on assigned homework in the text!
  • Study Time/Study Skills:
    • Keep in mind that most students can only study new material for about 15 - 20 minutes without a break (even the best can usually only go for 45 min). Even a few minutes break will usually help.
    • Want to maximize lecture efficiency since most of material will be covered in lecture. Three traditional suggestions:
      • Review the last lecture's materials just before lecture to get your mind on track so you don't "lose" the first few minutes
      • Read over your notes from lecture as soon as you can, annotating them with things you remember but missed etc.
      • At the earliest opportunity, rewrite you notes with the aid of the on-line notes and/or your text to make an effective set of study notes.
    • Look ahead at the material to be covered, then in lecture "think ahead of the lecturer" and see if you are right! That is, try and anticipate what is to be covered. This will make the lecture more entertaining and engaging and thus a better learning experience. It is one of the main characteristics shared by top professionals in all fields as well as successful graduate students when listening to oral presentations.
    • Reward yourself for hard work - take a break to watch a favorite show, play a short computer game, eat a favorite treat etc.
    • Take off at least one day for fun - guilt free (after all your Chemistry Professor told you to, so I guess its kind of an assignment [you know what kind of reputations they have as hard-ass types).
    • Notice that much of this will be more effective if your carefully schedule your time.



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© R A Paselk

Last modified 28 January 2011