Chemistry

Faculty
  • Professor Ellison, Tortorelli; Associate Professors Reig (Chair), Williamsen; Assistant Professors Klein, Pfennig, Walvoord, Wilner..

  • The chemistry department at Ursinus College has been approved by the American Chemical Society since 1959. The objectives of the department are (1) to offer specialized training in chemistry, beyond the basic course, that will enable a graduate to enter a career as a professional chemist; (2) to prepare the student for graduate study; (3) to provide a strong foundation for the student planning to enter medicine, dentistry, or an allied health field; (4) to prepare the student for teaching chemistry at the secondary level; (5) to provide courses which satisfy the departmental requirements for a comprehensive minor; and (6) to provide a course in general chemistry which satisfies the natural science requirements of the College.

    Recognizing that students have different educational objectives, the chemistry department offers several programs leading to a major. Students wishing to combine a chemistry major with a major/minor concentration in another academic department may enroll in any one of the following programs (tracks) in accordance with their career interests.

    Requirements for Majors

    Regardless of track, all majors must complete the following courses: CHEM-107/107LQ, 108/108L (or 151/151LQ in place of 107/107LQ and 108/108L), 201W, 207/207L, 208/208L, 212, 309/309L, 310/310L, 315/315L, 322/322L, 400, 499 and one of the following advanced courses: 408W, 410W, 426W, 435W, 447W, 450W; MATH-112; and PHYS-121Q,122Q.

    Chemistry majors can fulfill the requirement for an oral presentation in the major by taking CHEM-408W, 410W, 426W, 435W, 447W, 491W, or 492W and the capstone requirement by taking CHEM-408W, 410W, 426W, 435W, 447W, 450W, 491W, or 492W.

    Track 1. Major Specialization in Chemistry

    Students planning to enter the chemical industry or planning further study in chemistry or chemically related areas (e.g. engineering, biochemistry, material science, and the like) may enroll in this program.

    Track 2. American Chemical Society Certified Major — Chemistry Emphasis

    The American Chemical Society has adopted a set of standards for undergraduate training in chemistry. In addition to the courses required of all majors, students seeking certification must complete the following courses: CHEM-380 or 381 or 491W; and CHEM-347 or BCMB-351.

    Track 3. Specialization in Chemistry for Medical School and Allied Fields

    This course of study is designed for students planning admission to graduate programs in biochemistry, toxicology, pharmacology, etc., and to professional schools in the healing arts (such as medicine and dentistry) or further study in the health-related fields. In addition to the courses required of all majors, this program consists of the following courses: CHEM-347 or BCMB-351; BIO-101Q and 102Q.

    Track 4. Specialization in Chemistry for Science Teaching

    This program satisfies the requirements for secondary school certification in chemistry as established by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. In addition to the courses required of all majors, students seeking certification should complete ENV-100 or CHEM 101Q. Prospective teachers should serve as laboratory assistants or participate in safety training. Prospective student teachers must have a 2.50 average in chemistry and receive a departmental recommendation which considers, in addition to academic performance, the student’s interpersonal and communication skills. Students and their advisers should consult the Ursinus College Education Department.

    Requirements for Minors

    A minor concentration in chemistry consists of Chemistry 107/107LQ, 108/108L (or 151/151LQ in place of 107/107LQ and 108/108L), 207/207L, 208/208L, 309/309L or 315/315L or 322/322L, and three additional credits in chemistry at the 300-level or higher excluding internships, research, and seminar courses.

    Departmental Honors in Chemistry

    Students successfully completing CHEM-491W and CHEM-492W may be awarded honors in chemistry, but no additional credit will be granted. Description of the honors program, including qualifications, is detailed in this catalogue.

Courses

  • *For any lecture course that has an accompanying laboratory, a student may choose to repeat the lecture and lab independently.

    CHEM-100Q. Topics in Chemistry

    A study of the essential nature of chemistry, emphasizing basic chemical principles and applications. Topics may include atomic structure, bonding, the production and utilization of energy, and oxidation-reduction. Societal and historical perspectives are introduced by way of assignments from the popular literature. A knowledge of algebra is assumed. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory per week. Four semester hours.

    Note: A student who has received credit for CHEM-107 or 151 may not enroll in CHEM-100Q. CHEM-100Q may not be used as elective credits for chemistry majors or minors.

    CHEM-101Q. Introduction to Environmental Chemistry 

    This course, intended for non-science majors, will examine selected topics in environmental chemistry through an understanding of basic chemical principles. Topics may include global warming, ozone depletion, pollution, and waste management. Three hours of lecture. Three semester hours. (S, if taken with CHEM-101LQ.)

    CHEM-101LQ. Laboratory in Introductory Environmental Chemistry

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-101Q. In addition to mastering basic chemistry laboratory skills, students will analyze air, water, and soil samples using a variety of techniques. Prerequisite: CHEM-101Q (or concurrently). Three hours of laboratory per week. One semester hour.

    Note: CHEM-101Q and CHEM-101L may not be used as elective credits for chemistry majors or minors.

    CHEM-102Q. Introduction to Forensic Chemistry

    This course, intended for non-science majors, will examine selected topics in forensic science. Through an understanding of basic chemical principles, this course will investigate the role of science in solving crimes. Topics may include fingerprint analysis, fiber identification, blood typing and analysis, drug identification, and DNA profiling. Case studies will be used to explore the scientific foundation for the examination of physical, chemical, and biological evidence. Three hours of lecture. Three semester hours. (S, if taken with CHEM-102LQ.)

    CHEM-102LQ. Laboratory in Forensic Chemistry

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-102Q. This laboratory course will involve the analysis of trace evidence. Techniques utilized may include chromatography, fingerprinting, blood typing, fiber identification, glass analysis, mass spectrometry, and infrared spectroscopy. Students will work in investigative teams. Prerequisite: CHEM-102Q (or concurrently). Three hours of laboratory per week. One semester hour.

    Note: CHEM-102Q and CHEM-102L may not be used as elective credits for chemistry majors or minors.

    CHEM-107. General Chemistry I

    A study of the principles of chemistry. Topics include structure, bonding, stoichiometry, states of matter, inorganic reactions, thermochemistry, and solutions. The mathematical solution of chemical problems will be emphasized. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-107LQ. Prerequisite: Completion of Chemistry Department Placement Exam and Survey. Three hours of lecture per week plus one hour of recitation per week at the discretion of the instructor. Three semester hours. (S, if taken with CHEM-107LQ.)

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-107 for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-105.

    CHEM-107LQ. Laboratory in General Chemistry I

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-107. Experimental work may include verification of the stoichiometric relationship between reactants and products, the preparation and characterization of compounds, titrations involving neutralization and redox reactions, measurement of enthalpies of reaction, and colorimetric analysis. The mathematical solution of chemical problems will be emphasized. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-107. Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-107LQ for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-105LQ.

    CHEM-108. General Chemistry II

    A study of properties of solutions, kinetics, equilibria, and acid-base chemistry, thermodynamics, electrochemistry, and nuclear chemistry. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-108L. Prerequisite: CHEM-105 or 107. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-108 for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-206.

    CHEM-108L. Laboratory in General Chemistry II

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-108. Special emphasis will be placed on sample manipulation, control of solution characteristics, quantitative analysis, and the development of skills in wet and instrumental analysis methods. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-108. Prerequisite: CHEM-105LQ or 107LQ. Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-108L for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-206L.

    CHEM-151. Advanced General Chemistry

    A course in the foundations of chemistry and analysis of chemical systems designed for students with a strong background in chemistry. Topics in atomic structure, bonding, thermodynamics, equilibria and kinetics will be discussed in detail. The course will emphasize the integration of these topics with other areas of chemistry, having an outlook toward upper-level chemistry courses. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-151LQ. Prerequisite: Completion of Chemistry Department Placement Exam and Survey. Placement in this course is based on the results of the exam and survey. Three hours of lecture per week plus one hour of recitation per week at the discretion of the instructor. Three semester hours. (S, if taken with CHEM-151LQ.)

    Note: Students who have received credit for CHEM-105, 107, 108, and/or 206 may not enroll in CHEM-151.

    CHEM-151LQ. Laboratory in Advanced General Chemistry

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-151. Experimental work may include topics in stoichiometry, chemical structure and bonding, thermodynamics, equilibrium, and kinetics. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-151. Three hours of laboratory per week. One semester hour.*

    CHEM-201W. Effective Communication for Chemists

    Practice in various forms of technical writing commonly used by chemists. Topics will include writing the scientific paper, display of experimental data, and effective presentation skills. Course work will involve bibliographic instruction and the use of primary sources. Open only to chemistry majors. Pre- or co-requisites: CHEM-207. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-207. Organic Chemistry I

    An introduction to the study of the physical and chemical properties of both aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons within the context of modern structural theory. Areas emphasized are bonding, acidity and basicity in organic systems, stereochemistry, and reaction mechanisms. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-207L. Prerequisite: CHEM-108 or 151. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-207 for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-106.

    CHEM-207L. Laboratory in Organic Chemistry I

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-207. Experimental work may include measurement of physical properties, study of reaction kinetics, and synthesis. Techniques employed include chromatography, distillation, extraction, infrared and UV/vis spectroscopy, and recrystallization. Primary and secondary literature sources are introduced. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-207. Prerequisite: CHEM-108LQ or 151LQ. Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-207L for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-106L.

    CHEM-208. Organic Chemistry II

    A continuation of CHEM-207. Particular emphasis is placed on spectrometric methods, and on the reactivity and synthesis of a variety of organic functional groups. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-208L. Prerequisite: CHEM-207. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-208 for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-205.

    CHEM-208L. Laboratory in Organic Chemistry II

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-208; a continuation of 207L. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-208. Prerequisite: CHEM-207L. Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    Note: Student cannot take CHEM-208L for credit, if the student has earned credit for CHEM-205L.

    CHEM-212. Structure and Spectroscopy

    A study of the fundamental aspects of the various forms of spectroscopy through the structural examination of a variety of chemical compounds. The course will emphasize major spectroscopic techniques, such as NMR, IR, MS, and UV-vis. In depth analysis of the spectra and their relation to structure determination will be emphasized. Prerequisites: Either CHEM-108 or 151, 208 (or concurrently). Three hours of lecture per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-291. Introduction to Research

    Laboratory and library work, under the direction of a faculty member, designed to introduce the student to fundamental research procedures and data interpretation in the context of a research project. Upon completion of the work, a formal presentation must be given to the department. This course may be taken more than once. Prerequisites: CHEM-107LQ or 151LQ; and permission of the research adviser. Three hours of laboratory per week. Graded S/U. One semester hour.

    CHEM-309. Physical Chemistry I

    An in-depth study of chemical thermodynamics and kinetics, including enthalpy, entropy, and Gibbs energy changes; physical and chemical equilibria; rates of chemical reactions; and reaction mechanisms*. Prerequisites: CHEM-108 or 151; MATH-112; and PHYS-122Q. Strongly recommended: MATH-211. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    Note: Students may not receive credit for both CHEM-309 and BCMB-307.

    CHEM-309L. Laboratory in Physical Chemistry I

    Laboratory work related to BCMB-307 and CHEM-309, emphasizing data analysis, computer and writing skills. Lab report writing will require use of the primary and secondary literature sources*. Prerequisites: CHEM-108L or 151LQ; BCMB-307 (or concurrently) or CHEM-309 (or concurrently). Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    CHEM-310. Physical Chemistry II

    A study of the principles of quantum mechanics applied to simple models (particle in the box, harmonic oscillator) and to atoms and molecules (quantum chemistry). The course will include statistical thermodynamics. Emphasizes the mathematical foundation and spectroscopic investigation of atomic and molecular properties*. Prerequisite: CHEM-108 or 151; MATH-112; and PHYS-122Q. Strongly recommended: MATH-211. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-310L. Laboratory in Physical Chemistry II

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-310, emphasizing spectroscopic methods of investigating atomic and molecular structure and properties. Data analysis and lab report writing will require the use of the chemical literature*. Prerequisites: CHEM-108L or 151LQ; and 310 (or concurrently). Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    CHEM-315. Instrumental Analysis

    A study of instrument-based spectroscopic, separation, and electrochemical analyses. A framework that can be used to understand new and old techniques, the theory behind a variety of specific techniques, and the current practices used in chemical analysis will be discussed. In addition to the discussion of specific techniques, basic concepts in electronics and statistics will be presented*. Prerequisite: CHEM-108 or 151. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-315L. Laboratory in Instrumental Analysis

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-315. Students will gain experience with a variety of instrumental analysis techniques by investigating how specific instrumental settings affect output. Emphasis will be placed on statistical analysis of experimental data*. Prerequisites: CHEM-108L or 151LQ, and 315 (or concurrently); or permission of instructor. Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    CHEM-322. Inorganic Chemistry

    A principles-based approach to modern inorganic chemistry, including the structure, bonding, and reactivity of main group, transition metal, and organometallic compounds. Topics may include atomic theory, symmetry, chemical applications of group theory, molecular orbital theory, ligand field theory, the electronic spectroscopy of coordination compounds, and solid-state chemistry. Prerequisite: CHEM-108 or 151. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-322L. Laboratory in Inorganic Chemistry

    Laboratory work related to CHEM-322. Techniques used to synthesize and characterize a variety of inorganic compounds will be introduced. This course must be taken concurrently with CHEM-322*. Prerequisite: CHEM-108L or 151LQ. Three hours per week. One semester hour.

    CHEM-347. Fundamentals of Biochemistry

    A study of the chemistry of molecules and reactions important in biological systems. Topics may include amino acids, proteins, enzymes, carbohydrates, lipids, metabolism, bioenergetics, DNA, RNA, pharmaceuticals, and the mechanisms of biological reactions. Prerequisites: CHEM-108 or 151, and 208. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    Note: Students who have received credit for BCMB-351 may not enroll in CHEM-347.

    CHEM-350. Selected Topics in Chemistry

    A course focused on a topic of contemporary interest to the chemical community, such as advanced organic chemistry, nuclear magnetic resonance, medicinal chemistry, materials science, ethical issues in science, or synthesis. Prerequisites: CHEM-108 or 151, and 208; or permission of the instructor. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-380. Off-Campus Research

    An approved, off-campus laboratory research experience supervised by an on-site adviser and faculty liaison involving a minimum of 10 hours per week for one semester or four weeks of full-time work. Before beginning the project, the student must submit a proposal to be approved by both the chemistry faculty and the on-site adviser. Upon completion of the work, written and oral reports must be presented to the department. Prerequisites: CHEM-108L or 151LQ, and 208L. Graded S/U. Three semester hours. (XLP.)

    CHEM-381. Internship

    A laboratory project in cooperation with industry at an industrial site involving a minimum of 10 hours per week for one semester or four weeks of full-time work. Before beginning the internship, the student must submit a proposal to be approved by both the chemistry faculty and the on-site supervisor. Upon completion of the work, written and oral reports must be presented to the department.  Open to juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 120 hours of work. Upon completion of the work, written and oral reports must be presented to the department. Prerequisites: CHEM-108L or 151LQ, and 208L. Graded S/U. Three semester hours. (XLP.)

    CHEM-382. Internship

    A laboratory project in cooperation with industry at an industrial site involving a minimum of 10 hours per week for one semester or four weeks of full-time work. Before beginning the internship, the student must submit a proposal to be approved by both the chemistry faculty and the on-site supervisor. Upon completion of the work, written and oral reports must be presented to the department. Open to rising juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 160 hours of work. Prerequisites: CHEM-108L or 151LQ, and 208L. Graded S/U. Four semester hours. (XLP.)

    CHEM-391. Research/Focused Inquiry

    Laboratory and library work, under the direction of a faculty member, designed to introduce the student to fundamental research procedures and data interpretation in the context of a research project. Upon completion of the work, a formal presentation must be given to the department. This course may be taken more than once. Prerequisites: CHEM-208L or 291, and permission of the research adviser. Six hours of laboratory per week. Two semester hours.

    CHEM-400. Chemistry Seminar

    A forum for seminar presentations by students, faculty members, and visiting scientists. Offered both semesters. Prerequisites: CHEM-108 or 151, and 208. May be taken four times for credit. One hour per week. Graded S/U. One semester hour.

    CHEM-408W. Advanced Organic Chemistry

    A study of structure, reactivity, reaction mechanisms, and synthetic methodology in organic systems. Written and oral exercises are required, as well as a major paper. Offered spring of odd-numbered years. Prerequisites: CHEM-108 or 151, and 208. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-410W. Advanced Physical Chemistry

    A course that explores topics in physical chemistry in depth. Topics may include advanced methods in spectroscopy, reaction kinetics, molecular reaction dynamics, quantum mechanical calculations, and nanoscience. Written and oral exercises are required, as well as a major paper. Prerequisites: CHEM-309 and 310. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-426W. Advanced Analytical Chemistry

    A study of an application in analytical chemistry or a specific analytical technique. Written and oral exercises are required, as well as a major paper. Offered spring of even-numbered years. Prerequisite: CHEM-315. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-435W. Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

    A study of bonding theories, point groups, structure, stereochemistry, and reactivity of inorganic and organometallic materials with an emphasis on transition-metal compounds. Other topics include superconductivity, catalysis, and bioinorganic chemistry. Written and oral exercises are required, as well as a major paper. Offered fall of odd-numbered years. Prerequisites: CHEM-322. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-447W. Advanced Biochemistry

    A detailed exploration of the structures, properties, and reactions of biological molecules, cycles, and systems. Written and oral exercises are required, as well as a major paper. Offered fall of even-numbered years. Prerequisites: CHEM-347, or BCMB-351 and 452W. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-450W. Advanced Topics in Chemistry

    An advanced course covering selected topics in modern chemistry. Possible topics include biophysical chemistry, bioinorganic chemistry, the chemistry of life, organometallic chemistry, and nanoscience. Prerequisites: CHEM-108 or 151, and 208; or permission of the instructor. Three hours per week. Three semester hours.

    CHEM-491W. Research / Independent Work

    Independent laboratory and library investigation in chemistry. A final research paper and oral presentation will be presented to the department faculty. At the time of registration, written consent of the research adviser and the department is required. This course may be taken more than once. Prerequisites: CHEM-201W. Co-requisite: CHEM-400. Twelve hours per week. Four semester hours. (XLP.)

    CHEM-492W. Research/Independent Work

    A continuation of CHEM-491W, with a final seminar and thesis describing the research work. At the time of registration, written consent of the research advisor and the department is required. This course may be taken more than once. Prerequisites: CHEM-491W. Co-requisite: CHEM-400. Twelve hours per week. Four semester hours. (XLP.)

    CHEM-499. Chemistry Assessment

    A course required of all Chemistry majors designed to assess their learning in the chemistry program. Taken in the student’s last semester. Graded S/U. Zero semester hours.