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Course Syllabus

Course: CHEM 1015

Division: Natural Science and Math
Department: Chemistry
Title: Introductory Chemistry Laboratory

Semester Approved: Fall 2017
Five-Year Review Semester: Fall 2022
End Semester: Fall 2023

Catalog Description: This is a hands-on laboratory experience that accompanies the CHEM 1010 course. It is designed to give students a feel for basic laboratory equipment and measurement. It also provides reinforcement of the concepts covered in the class. The lab also enables students to visualize many concepts and experiments discussed in class.

General Education Requirements: Physical Science Lab (LB)
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring
Credit/Time Requirement: Credit: 1; Lecture: 0; Lab: 2

Prerequisites: MATH 0850 or equivalent

Justification: This course is offered by chemistry departments at most institutions in the state and will transfer to all of them. This course fulfills the Physical Science Lab General Education requirement. For the natural sciences, science is the systematic inquiry into natural phenomena, organizing and condensing those observations into testable models and hypotheses, theories or laws. The success and credibility of science is anchored in the willingness of scientists to: 1) expose their ideas and results to independent testing and replication by other scientists which requires the complete and open exchange of data, procedures, and materials; 2) abandon or modify accepted conclusions when confronted with more complete or reliable experimental evidence. Adherence to these principles provides a mechanism for self-correction that is the foundation of the credibility of science. (Adapted from a statement by the Panel on Public Affairs of the American Physical Society which was endorsed by the Executive Board of the American Association of Physics Teachers in 1999.)

General Education Outcomes:
1: A student who completes the GE curriculum will have a fundamental knowledge of human cultures and the natural world, with particular emphasis on American institutions, the social and behavioral sciences, the physical and life sciences, the humanities, the fine arts and personal wellness.  Students meet this outcome by applying their understanding of chemical processes and compounds associated with atoms and molecules, atomic structure and chemical reactions during laboratory experiments. For example, the calculation of the concentration of citric acid in fruit juice by the method of titration with a known concentration of a base. Students will be evaluated using written lab reports.

2: A student who completes the GE curriculum can read, retrieve, evaluate, interpret, and deliver information using a variety of traditional and electronic media. Students will cover this outcome in the co-requisite lecture course.

6: A student who completes the GE curriculum can reason analytically, critically, and creatively about nature, culture, facts, values, ethics, and civic policy. Students will be able to solve problems using various techniques including: unit cancellation, Students will be taught methods in rounding, use of scientific notation, balanced equations, stoichiometry problems, measurement using proper scientific instrumentation, % yield, gas laws, solutions, etc. Students will be evaluated based on their written lab reports and performance on the lab final.

Student Learning Outcomes:
Apply scientific reasoning in a variety of contexts. Students will be able to apply principles taught in general chemistry involving the scientific method, chemical stoichiometry, gas laws, solutions chemistry and equilibrium. At the conclusion of this course students should have sufficient knowledge of chemical principles and laboratory techniques to be able to meet requirements in their major department. Students will be evaluated through written lab reports and the lab final. 

Use the concepts of physical science to solve daily problems. Students will demonstrate the ability to apply the concepts of the scientific method, chemical stoichiometry, gas laws and solution chemistry to draw conclusions related to their laboratory projects. These laboratory projects relate to topics such as: how soap functions, distillation, and combustion. Students will be evaluated through written lab reports and the lab final. 

Understand how physical scientists think and form judgments about the physical world. Students will demonstrate the ability to apply the scientific method in problem solving to form conclusions about phenomena observed in lab and apply them to the course material. Students will be evaluated as part of written laboratory reports and the lab final.  

Assess the credibility of scientific information. This Outcome will be covered in the co-requisite lecture course.  

Recognize the manifestations of physical science in phenomena of the everyday world. Students will demonstrate the ability to connect the principles of Chemistry with everyday occurrences as experienced through hands-on laboratory experiments. For example: hydrophobic/hydrophilic functions of traditional and synthetic soaps, measurement of density, and fractional distillation. Their performance will be evaluated through written lab reports and the lab final.  

Acquire the tools necessary for life-long learning in physical science. Students will demonstrate the ability to use the tools of the trade as applied to laboratory experiments. For example: measurements of mass and volume, titration of an acid and error propagation. They will be evaluated through written lab reports and the lab final. 

Identify something acquired in the course about which he/she has become passionate. Students will identify a topic or application of the course material about which they are passionate as part of their laboratory final. Students will be evaluated based on responses to their lab final. 

Chemistry 1015 is an introduction to General that includes the following major laboratory experiments: Safety in the Chemical Laboratory, Measurements, Density, Chemical Changes, Double Displacement Reactions, Gas Laws, Chemical Equilibrium, Acid/Base and pH, Organic Models, Melting Points, Simple Organic Reactions, Oxidation and Reduction reactions, and Intermolecular Forces. Course content will be conveyed through the lab manual, hands-on lab experience, and written lab reports to provide an application of the course material in the co-requisite lecture course.

Key Performance Indicators:
Students will be assessed on a weekly basis through in-laboratory assignments and occasional quizzes. Homework will be assigned on a regular basis to give students the opportunity to check their own progress.

GRADING POLICIES: LABS (about 12) 70-100 % (includes Pre-Lab written assignments) 

QUIZZES or ASSIGNMENTS (occasional, as needed) 0-15% 

Written or Practical LAB Final 0-20%  








Representative Text and/or Supplies:
Lab manual is written and published in-house.

Pedagogy Statement:

Maximum Class Size: 24
Optimum Class Size: 16