Humboldt State University ® Department of Chemistry

Richard A. Paselk

Chem 110
Summer 2006 Syllabus Office: SA 560a
Office Hours: M-F 1200-1300 Phone: x 5719
Home: 822-1116

You will note that the schedules below are both tentative, as are the various study guides. I may be updating them occasionally on the web. I will announce some updates in class, but you should make a habit of checking my Chem 110 web pages for changes!

Lecture Schedule: See General Chemistry on my Web Page (

Laboratory Schedule: See General Chemistry on my Web Page (

Required Materials:

Prerequisites: You must have passed Chem 109 (or an equivalent transfer course) with a C- or better to take Chem 110. If you took "Chem 109" at another institution I recommend you talk to me and/or look at my Chem 109 web-site (see my Course Archive) to make sure you are prepared for Chem 110. If you have any doubts about your preparedness for Chem 110, please see me as soon as possible.

Lectures and General Course Information

Chem 110 is the second half of an integrated, two-semester course, General Chemistry. In the first half of Chem 110 we finish the study of equilibrium begun in Chem 109 and provide further introduction to general chemical principles and concepts. The second half of the course focuses on the descriptive chemistry of the elements and an introduction to nuclear chemistry. Most upper division chemistry courses require Chem 110 as a prerequisite. Chem 110 cannot be taken Credit/No Credit!

An average student should expect to spend about three hours studying for each hour of lecture to get a "C" in this course!

My attitude towards texts is that they are resources to repeat, expand, clarify, and otherwise aid you in your endeavor to understand chemistry. Zumdahl and I may sometimes disagree. In such cases of disagreement between a text and myself, I am the "ultimate authority" for this course and you must "do it my way." This doesn't mean that I am right, but rather that we need a common, defined set of knowledge for effective communication.

The text is a critical source of information; read it regularly and carefully. Unless you are informed otherwise, you will be held responsible for all text material, whether or not it is covered in the lecture. The questions and problems at the ends of the chapters are important! Chemistry cannot be learned by merely reading or listening to lectures - you must actively practice it. Although none of the end-of-chapter questions and problems will be assigned as "turn in" homework, they should be taken seriously; your success in Chem 110 will probably depend on how much time you spend on them. (In fact, you should expect to spend at least ten to twenty hours per week outside of class studying and doing homework for this course. If you are not prepared to make this commitment of time, you should consider dropping the course.) As you do the problems you must think about the principles involved. The goal is to understand what you are doing! Exams will present you with questions and problems you may have never seen before. If you understand the principles and can solve the problems in the texts, lecture notes, and lab manual rather than memorize a pathway to a solution, you should do well on exams and quizzes.

End-of-chapter problems are for your benefit. The points you receive on exams will be the benefit you gain from doing them. In each of the textbook chapters to be covered in this course, it is to be clearly understood that all of the odd-numbered exercises at the end of each chapter are assigned for the student to work out and understand. Similar exercises are paired such that if one exercise causes difficulty, a similar exercise preceding or following the difficult exercise will provide additional practice on the same concept. Even though these exercises are not to be turned in, the student is strongly encouraged to work out all of the exercises at the end of the each chapter.

I will post a complete set of my lecture notes in this course. You should be critical when using them - its incredibly easy to screw up and enter small errors into these notes. If you use the notes and think you've found an error please tell me via e-mail so I may correct them immediately rather than forgetting your comments on the way to my office! I will attempt to put all of the lecture examples into my web notes to help you out.

Attendance: Attendance in lecture will not be taken, nor will it be used by the instructor to influence your grade in any way. HOWEVER, you are strongly urged to attend every lecture and to take thorough notes. Learning studies have found that, for most people, taking notes is an effective learning aid. (I suggest taking the best notes you can, and then use my web notes to check them - past students have found it detrimental to depend on my web notes rather than taking their own!)

Exams: Midterm exams will be given during lecture hours. Note the in-class exam dates and be certain you can make them. I do not generally give make-up exams, but can often make an accommodation if notified in advance. So if you think you can't make an exam, please call me in advance. If you can't reach me, leave a message with the Chemistry Department secretary or on my voice mail on email.


Laboratory attendance is mandatory and role is taken. Missing three or more laboratory sessions will result in an automatic "F" for the course! Failure to turn in a lab report will count as a missed lab! Unless you are informed otherwise, the written report for each lab exercise will be due at the beginning of the following lab. Late reports will not be accepted, except when they are necessitated by illness or some other unavoidable circumstance. It is impossible to overestimate the potential value of the lab and of the preparation of the lab reports in helping you to learn chemistry. The work you put in on the preparation of your lab reports will have a direct effect on your quiz and examination scores. Bring a scientific calculator to every laboratory. Come prepared to the labs - i.e., know what you are about to do in lab.

Be punctual. Laboratory instructions and safety information is given at the beginning of lab. You will not be allowed to do lab work if you have missed this information!

The laboratory part of Chem 110 begins with a continuation of the types of experiments done in Chem109. After following this format for the first seven experiments, the lab switches over to qualitative analysis for the remainder of the semester. You will be asked to identify cations and/or anions in unknowns provided to you during this phase of the laboratory. Unlike Chem 109, a substantial fraction of your grade (points earned) will depend on your performance in the lab.

You are strongly encouraged to work ahead of schedule. If you finish all of the unknowns before the end of the semester, you may check out of the laboratory early. No unknown will contain either the mercury(I) ion or the mercury(II) ion. No unknown will contain the acetate ion.


Laboratory Written Reports: Unless you are informed otherwise, the written report for each lab exercise will be due before the beginning of the following lab. Late reports will not be accepted, except when they are necessitated by illness or other unavoidable circumstance. Lab reports will be graded; each report is worth a maximum of 15 points.

Laboratory Cation and Anion Reports: The report for each unknown must be submitted on or before the due date. No unknown may be attempted more than once. In addition to identifying the cations and/or anions in each unknown, you will be required to correctly write out the balanced net ionic equations which govern the analytical procedures you carried out for the identified cation and/or anions. An example of this is provided for the mercury(I) (a Group I cation not present in any of your unknowns) and the acetate ion (also not present in any of your unknowns).

Laboratory Quizzes: Five quizzes, each worth 10 points, will be given during the laboratory time as scheduled (see attached Tentative Lab Schedule). These quizzes will cover primarily the theory and procedures of the qualitative analysis groups that you have been responsible for up to the date of the quiz.

EXAMINATIONS: Two scheduled 50 minute, 100 point exams will be given during lecture time plus a 110 minute, 200 point final exam given during finals week.

Note - All students will be given DOUBLE-TIME to complete all exams in the Summer 2006 session.

Each exam will have a Periodic Table attached. Any other information needed for calculations you will need to provide on your crib sheet or memorize. There will be no separate lab final. No extra time will be allowed for a student who arrives late. No make-up exams will be given, and no exam may be taken early or late. If you miss an exam for legitimate reasons totally beyond your control, see your instructor.

Cheating on exams, quizzes, or unknowns will result in administrative action though the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and may result in an "F" in the course and expulsion from the University.

Grade Assignment: Successful completion of the entire lab is necessary to pass this course. Grades are then assigned based on the distribution of points shown below-

It is impossible to predict what point total will be required for a given letter grade. As an example, however, in Fall 2003 (the last time I taught this course) 45% of the total points (Lecture and Lab) was enough to earn a "D", 59% a "C-" and 86% was enough for an "A." Letter grades are not assigned for individual exams or reports. Only at the end of the semester, after your point total has been determined and the results of the lab reports have been examined can letter grades be considered.

 Midterm exams:

 2 @ 100 pts. each

  200 pts.

 Final exam:  

  200 pts.

 Lab Reports

5 @ 15 pts. each

75 pts.

 Lab Quizzes

 5 @ 10 pts. each

 50 pts.


 12 @ differing pts. each

 275 pts.


  Total =

 800 pts.

Drop Policy: I will give you until I return the first hour exam to drop this class with a "W." After that time, failure or other academic problems, as well as time management (work, kids, etc., but see below) will not be considered to be among the category of "serious and compelling reasons" needed to drop this course. Serious and compelling reasons are considered to be problems outside of the student's control and which could not be anticipated, such as serious illness or hospitalization. If you do have a problem, please notify me as soon as possible if you think it may require your dropping the class.

Incompletes: Incompletes are generally reserved for students who are unable to complete the class for serious and compelling reasons which occur after the last drop period.


If you have a documented learning disability and would like to discuss academic accommodations, please contact me as soon as possible. Our campus Student Disability Resource Center (SDRC) can assist you with the accommodation process and can be reached at (707) 826-5392 (TDD). The SDRC is located in House 71 (Little Apartments) off Library Circle.

If you have a physical situation which might interfere with lab work please contact me as soon as possible. Many accommodations require lead time for implementation, so don't delay! We will work with the Student Disability Resource Center (SDRC) to determine optimal accommodations/working conditions.


C110 Laboratory

C110 Home

C110 Lecture Notes

© R A Paselk

Last modified 5 June 2006