Syllabus 10301


City College of New York

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


Chem 10301

General Chemistry 1



Twice a week, 1 hour 15 minutes


 Three times a week, 50 minutes


Lab (MR-1001/1003) 

Once a week, 1 hour 50 minutes 



Once a week, 1 hour 50 minutes


Course Description

This course is the first of a two-semester sequence and provides an in-depth introduction to the fundamental laws and techniques of chemistry for majors in science and engineering.  Topics include: measurement; stoichiometry; the gaseous state; thermochemistry; atomic structure; chemical bonding; redox reactions; solids, liquids and intermolecular forces. It consists of three components (lecture, laboratory, and recitation), which are integrated to provide a comprehensive but thorough introduction to the principles of chemistry.  The laboratory component introduces students to common laboratory methods including visible spectroscopy and titration.  The recitation aims to show how the concepts covered in lecture are applied in practice in solving problems.

Hours/Credits: 3 lecture, 2 recitation, 2 lab. hr./wk.; 4 cr.

Prerequisite:  Math 19500



Julia Burdge, “Chemistry. 4th Edition”, McGraw-Hill, 2016.  Chem 10301 covers the first 10 chapters and Chem 10401 most of the remaining. The CCNY online bookstore sells a special package that includes a loose-leaf full book and two years of online homework access. The ISBN for this package is 9781260022094.

Online Assignments

Online assignments will account for 10% of the grade and include two types of activities: a) reading assignments and b) online homework based on problems from the book. Registration is free with a registration code from a new textbook. Otherwise, you will need to purchase access to the online homework. A 14-day Courtesy Access is also available, in case you are not certain about completing this class. An online access code also provides you access to the full electronic version of the textbook.

Your reading assignments will have to be completed before the corresponding lecture and are based on the “Smartbook” concept. For more information please consult


For tutorials and FAQs please consult For tech support go to or call (800) 331-5094.



A simple scientific calculator is necessary for CHEM 10301.


                                                                   Exams and grading

There will be three midterms during the semester and a comprehensive final examination.  The lowest grade of the three midterms will be dropped. The final grade is a composite of the score in the other two midterms, the final exam, the laboratory, online assignments and recitation sessions.

No makeups are offered for the midterm exams.  A makeup for the final exam is offered only under compelling circumstances.


Learning outcomes

After completing this course, students should be able to:                                                   

  1. Perform unit conversions and express values with the correct number of significant figures.
  2. Express and interpret atomic symbols, atomic number, mass number, and molar mass.         
  3. Understand and apply concepts of balancing chemical reactions, and be able to perform stoichiometric calculations.                                        
  4. Define enthalpy and solve thermochemical equations.
  5. Express quantum energy levels of atoms and relate these to atomic properties.
  6. Draw and interpret Lewis-dot structures, predict three dimensional structure of simple molecules, and draw simple molecular orbital diagrams.                              
  7. Apply the ideal gas law to problems involving changes in moles, pressure, volume and temperature.
  8. Solve problems involving solution chemistry such as titrations, precipitation, and colligative properties.                                                                               
  9.  Write a laboratory report including data and analysis.           
  10.  Be able to conduct a variety of experiments (titrations, spectroscopic) including accurate recording of results and preparation of calibration curves.           
  11.  Be aware and follow the safety requirements in a chemical laboratory.         
  12. Analyze molecular modeling and graphic plots using computers.                  
  13. Communicate concepts and problem solving of chemistry that have been presented in lecture.
  14. Work as part of a problem solving team to solve chemistry problems.
  15. Apply chemical principles to selected applications in life science or technology.


Topics covered:

Chapter 1    Chemistry: The Central Science

Chapter 2    Atoms, Molecules, and Ions

Chapter 3    Stoichiometry: Ratios of Combination

Chapter 4    Reactions in Aqueous Solutions

Chapter 5    Thermochemistry

Chapter 6    Quantum Theory and the Electronic Structure of Atoms

Chapter 7    Electronic Configuration and the Periodic Table

Chapter 8    Chemical Bonding I: Basic Concepts

Chapter 9    Chemical Bonding II: Molecular Geometry and Bonding Theories

Chapter 10  Gases


Study tips

Learning Chemistry is cumulative – if you miss a class you will miss a significant building block, which will affect your exam performance, scores, and final grade as well as your ability to understand material in future courses.  So, attendance for all lectures, labs, and workshops while required is critical to your success.  Further, your own practice by doing homework and becoming engaged with the material as well as engaged with your classmates in workshop and lab discussions of chemical concepts will help you build your knowledge to succeed.  Learning these skills will prepare you for your chosen major and professional career. You will need a simple scientific calculator for this course.


Plan at least three hours of study (reading the chapter and completing the problem sets -“homework”) time for every hour you spend in class.  Do the problem sets individually (without help from friends or classmates) initially.  Please look at a related problem in the solution manual to help you solve the assigned problem.  If you are still unable to solve the problem, then ask a friend, classmate, workshop leader, TA, or Professor for help.

Seek help when you have difficulty (office hours, tutoring, study groups).


Free tutorial service may be available

Please check with the Chemistry Office (MR1024), the CCAPP office (MR Plaza), or the Engineering School.


Attendance (general CCNY policy)

Students are expected to attend every class session of each course in which they are enrolled and to be on time. An instructor has the right to drop a student from a course for excessive absence. Students are advised to determine the instructor’s policy at the first class session. They should note that an instructor may treat lateness as equivalent to absence. (No distinction is made between excused and unexcused absences.) Each instructor retains the right to establish his or her own policy, but students should be guided by the following general College policy: In courses designated as clinical, performance, laboratory or field work courses, the limit on absences is established by the individual instructor (see above). For all other courses, the number of hours absent may not exceed twice the number of contact hours the course meets per week. When a student is dropped for excessive absence, the Registrar will enter the grade of WU.



Noise and excessive chatter, eating, drinking, or use of unauthorized electronic equipment is not allowed in the classroom.


Statement on Academic Integrity

The CCNY policy on academic integrity will be followed in this course. The document can be found through the CCNY website by clicking on Current Students → Academic Services → Policy on Academic Integrity. All students must read the details regarding plagiarism and cheating in order to be familiar with the rules of the college. Cases where academic integrity is compromised will be prosecuted according to these rules.  In addition, the Policy of Academic Integrity can be found in the Undergraduate Bulletin 2007-2009 in Appendix B.3 on page 312.



Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable academic accommodations if determined eligible by the AccessAbility Center (AAC). Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student’s eligibility from the AAC, which is located in NAC 1/218. It is the student’s responsibility to initiate contact with the AAC and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.


Academic Appeals

The faculty of each of the schools defines the degree requirements, academic standards, and rules, and in general has jurisdiction over all of the courses offered by that school. Each of the schools has a Committee on Course and Standing charged with overseeing enforcement of these matters and dealing with special cases and appeals. Students have the right to appeal to the appropriate Committee on Course and Standing any decision made by individual faculty members or administrators about these academic matters. Students must consult with their academic advisor for the appropriate appeals procedure. The Committees on Course and Standing are the final authority on enforcement of curriculum, degree requirements, academic standards, grades and academic rules. It should be noted that most academic rules are enforced without exception.



Students with grievances concerning classroom matters other than grades should first attempt to resolve the grievance at the department level through discussion with the faculty member(s) or department chair. If the matter is not resolved, the student or department may refer the problem to the appropriate academic dean, the Ombudsman, or the Vice President for Student Affairs, who shall, if necessary, refer it to the Office of the Provost for further consideration and possible action.


Make-up examination for INC grades

INC may be assigned to students who have a passing grade (average on all the exams) in the course but who are unable to take the final examination due to conflict with another scheduled examination, death of spouse, injury sustained in a catastrophic incident, etc. (proof is also required). An Incomplete Grade Agreement form must be signed by the Instructor before the student is allowed to take the makeup exam.  Payment of a fee at the Bursar's office is required in order to take the makeup examination. Makeup exam for INC grades in Chemistry courses will be completed no later than two weeks after the end of classes. 



If you find yourself suffering during this or any other semester from anxiety, stress, or issues related to mental health, this is nothing to be ashamed of, and it is recommended you seek help.  The Wellness and Counseling Center (WCC) at City College provides counseling and psychological services to all registered CCNY students.  There is no charge for these services, and sessions are confidential.