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Blinn College • Bryan • Natural Science • Chemistry - CHEM

General Chemistry I CHEM-1411

  • Fall 2013
  • Section SECTION_305 CRN-11114
  • 4 Credits
  • 08/26/2013 to 12/13/2013
  • Modified 08/26/2013

Meeting Times

MW  1:25 – 2:40 p.m. (Lecture)    H Bldg, Room 207

MW  2:50 – 4:05 p.m. (Lab)          Science Bldg, Room 218

Contact Information

Professor: Dr.  Al  Gallegos, PhD

Email:  [email protected] 

Tel: 979 -209-8859

Tentative Office Hours:  MTWRF  11 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and by appointment  (Most days of the week I will gladly meet with you just about any time of your choosing, so long as you email me at least one day ahead of time.)

Tentative Office:  Science Bldg, Room 117


Fundamental principles of chemistry for majors in the sciences, health sciences, and engineering; topics include measurements, fundamental properties of matter, states of matter, chemical reactions, chemical stoichiometry, periodicity of elemental properties, atomic structure, chemical bonding, molecular structure, solutions, properties of gases, and an introduction to thermodynamics and descriptive chemistry. The laboratory experiments are designed to support theoretical principles presented in lecture and include an introduction of the scientific method, experimental design, data collection and analysis, and the preparation of laboratory reports.


Prerequisites: MATH1314 or MATH 1414 with a grade of "C" or higher or an SAT math score of 550 or higher or an ACT math score of 22 or higher.

Core Curriculum Statement

This is a Core Course in the 42-Hour Core Curriculum of Blinn College. As such, students will develop proficiency in the appropriate Intellectual Competencies, Exemplary Educational Objectives, and Perspectives.


  1. Define the fundamental properties of matter.
  2. Classify matter, compounds, and chemical reactions.
  3. Determine the basic nuclear and electronic structure of atoms.
  4. Identify trends in chemical and physical properties of the elements using the Periodic Table.
  5. Describe the bonding in and the shape of simple molecules and ions.
  6. Solve stoichiometric problems.
  7. Write chemical formulas.
  8. Write and balance equations.
  9. Use the rules of nomenclature to name chemical compounds.
  10. Define the types and characteristics of chemical reactions.
  11. Use the gas laws and basics of the Kinetic Molecular Theory to solve gas problems.
  12. Determine the role of energy in physical changes and chemical reactions.
  13. Convert units of measure and demonstrate dimensional analysis skills.
  14. Use basic apparatus and chemicals with proper laboratory techniques and apply experimental methodologies used in the chemistry laboratory.
  15. Make a detailed written laboratory report that includes careful recording of accurate experimental observations, interpretations of experimental data, and the presentation of logical conclusions according to theoretical principles with supporting references.
  16. Design fundamental experiments involving principles of chemistry.



Textbook: Chemistry, 6th Edition, McMurry-Fay; Pearson – Prentice Hall, 2012.

Lab Manual: General Chemistry 1411 Laboratory Manual 4th Edition, Beverly A. Clement, Blinn College, Bluedoor, LLC, 2013.

Online Homework: Mastering Chemistry; Pearson – Prentice Hall;

Calculator: simple nonprogrammable scientific calculator (standard, without graph and memory features)

Safety Equipment: laboratory goggles (OSHA approved - REQUIRED), aprons (optional)

eInstruction CPS RF clickers

General Chemistry-Official Study Guide by ACS; ISBN 0-9708042-0-2 (Optional)


Course Requirements

Homework is a requirement. There will be 5 assignments due during this semester, each worth 20 points, for a total 100 points. This will be worth 10% of your grade. The Homework collection and grading will be handled by the Mastering Chemistry system. A code must be purchased in order to access this system. Further instructions are given at the website   Homework will be based on the following criteria: (1) Homework is turned in on time, (2) The assignment is complete, and (3) The answers are correct.

Exams are a requirement. There will be 5 Lecture exams given on the days indicated in the course schedule. I will count your top 4 Exam grades. Each exam will be worth 100 points. These exams may have a combination of multiple-choice questions that will be machine-graded and non-multiple-choice questions that will be hand-graded. The Final Exam is comprehensive, all multiple –choice and worth 20% of the grade. Please note:

All exams are closed-book exams. No notes may be used on exams. All necessary information will be supplied to the student. Should you miss an exam, you will be allowed to make it up, assuming that you have a valid excuse. However, all make-up exams will be work-out problems only. As well, on all exams, including the final, there will be special rules in order to insure fairness: Please use the restroom before the exam. If you must leave the room for some reason, you must turn in your exam, and you will not be allowed to come back to the room.  Thus, restroom breaks are not allowed on an exam or quiz. When taking a quiz or exam, you must place all personal belongings off your desk. You cannot use your cell phone during your exam.

Bonus Quizzes are a requirement (But they are a bonus!). Several opportunities will be given during the course of the semester to obtain quiz credit. You will have at least 9 scheduled quizzes, each worth 20 pts. I will take the five highest quiz scores as your quiz grade. As well, the quiz credit can take other forms, including small out-of-class projects. Some of these quizzes might be individual, and some will be group efforts. As stated above, there will be a minimum of 9 quizzes during the course of the semester, of which your best 5 will be counted. Remember, these quizzes are Bonus, meaning that the maximum 100 pts will be added to your final grade tally (see Grading Criteria). You will receive a key to each quiz after you have taken the quiz. If you miss a Lecture Quizzes for whatever the reason, you will not be able to make the quiz up (because these are bonus only).

Laboratory experiments are required. The laboratory portion of this course counts for 20% of this course. For each experiment you will receive a score between 0 and 25 (25 pts max.). The lab report must reflect information obtained by you while in the laboratory and recorded in your lab notebook. A Data Sheet from your lab notebook must be signed by me before you leave the lab (5 pts.). As well, you will need to sign a Lab Attendance Sheet. Lab Reports will not be accepted unless one of these has been completed for the experiment. Lab reports must be turned in individually (i.e., each student must turn in an assignment). The Prelab questions (5 pts) will be due prior to starting the experiment. There will be 11 experiments in this semester. I will drop the lowest lab grade. (Remember, you need to attend all of the classes, including the labs.) Each Report with Prelab is worth 25 pts; therefore, the total will be 200 points. So, a typical lab report that you will turn in will have then following sections:

  1. Prelab (To be turned in before you start the experiment; worth 8 pts.)
  2. Data Sheet (To be signed by me, your instructor, before you leave the lab; you must put a copy of the data sheet in your lab report; worth 5 pts.)
  3. Postlab (This is the section of the lab report with your calculations and questions that you will answer after you perform the experiment; worth 12 pts.)

Students need to form groups of two in order to perform each lab. During the first class day, we will form the lab groups. If any groups of 3 are needed (due to an odd number of students in class), then I shall assign these. There should not be any groups of 4; if people choose to form groups of 3 or 4, they will be assigned a grade of zero. You need to attend all the lab sessions, if you miss a lab for any reason, a grade of zero will be awarded. There will be eleven (11) labs this semester. I shall drop the lowest lab grade; this will help anyone who misses a lab. If you miss more than 1 lab (due to an unforeseen circumstance, such an illness), then we shall have to take that as a case-by-case scenario. Of course, if a student misses several labs, she or he will miss several lectures, and so there is a point beyond which it is difficult, if not impossible, to catch up in class.

Please note, eating and drinking are not allowed in classrooms or laboratories. This is especially true in the laboratories. You need to put away or throw away any food/drink before you enter the lecture room/laboratory.



Participation Grade.  Blinn has now has added a participation grade worth 5 percent of the total grade to its core classes. Accordingly, this grade will be comprised of daily lecture quizzes (I’ll take the top ten scores) comprised of simple questions.




Please note, you will have 5 exams and 5 homework assignments during the course of the semester. Your exam dates are the same as the due dates for the homework assignments.


Due Date                     Exam number                          Homework assignment due

Wed      9/18      EXAM I on Chapters 1/2/3             Assignment 1

Wed      10/9      EXAM II on Chapters 4/5                Assignment 2

Wed      10/30    EXAM III on Chapters 6/7              Assignment 3

Mon      12/2      EXAM IV on Chapters 8/9/10         Assignment 4

Mon      12/9      EXAM V Comprehensive  Optional                                            




A note about Calculators: You will need a simple nonprogrammable scientific calculator. If you intend to take the second semester of this course, Chem 1412, this calculator should also be able to perform log and 10x functions. Also, for Chem 1412 it will be necessary to have ln and ex functions in your calculator. You cannot use your cell phone as your calculator in this course. The calculator should not be programmable, nor does it need to have graphic capabilities. You will not be able to use programmable calculators in this class, especially in the Final Exam (this includes the TI-83 and similar calculators). As well, the department has now amended the policy concerning calculators in the Final Exam. From now on, you will no longer be able to borrow calculators from the department during any exam, including the Final Exam. Of course, in this class, sharing of calculators is not allowed during exams.


N. B. For the laboratory classes:


1) You will need goggles for use in the laboratory. If you wear contact lenses, you will need to wear goggles only.


2) You will need to wear enclosed footwear (closed-toe shoes). No flip-flop sandals or ballet flats will be allowed.


3) You will need to wear clothing that covers your skin, neck to below knees. Shirts must have sleeves (short sleeves are fine). If you wear shorts, the alternative to this is that you can purchase your own lab coat that covers your legs to below the knees to wear during labs. (Lab coats can be purchased at stores which sell medical scrubs, i.e. Career Apparel on 29th Street).


**Note Well**  You will not be admitted to the laboratory if you fail to bring goggles, footwear, or are dressed in such a fashion that leaves the neck, arms or legs above the knees exposed (or if you do not follow safety procedures). If you fail to follow the rules, I will politely ask you to leave the room. Please note, in the past, we allowed students to borrow safety goggles from us, but we no longer allow this. (Please do not ask me if you can borrow safety goggles in lab). As well, this year we will be very strict about enforcing the closed-toed shoes. Optional Equipment: a laboratory apron or a non-flammable lab coat can be used. This is purely optional. However, an apron or lab coat will be necessary if your shorts or skirt do not cover your knees while standing. In summary, if you do not have appropriate approved eye protection or are not wearing enclosed footwear (closed-toed shoes) or are not wearing the appropriate clothing, you will not be allowed to perform the lab. Remember, in this class we do not perform make-up labs, so a grade of zero (0) will be assigned for your lab for any of the above violations.



Grading Criteria/Final Course Grade

Exams (top 4)                                    400 pts                  40%

 Homework                                         100 pts                  10%

Lab Experiments                               250 pts                  25%

Final Exam                                          200 pts                  20%

Participation Grade                          50 pts                    5%

Quizzes                                                 (max. 100 pts)            Bonus

TOTAL                                                   1100 pts out of 1000 points max


The range of each letter grade will be assigned at the end of the semester. Based on prior grade assignments, typical grade ranges are:

Total Course Points greater than or equal to 900 = A

Total Course Points greater than or equal to 800 but lower than 900 = B

Total Course Points greater than or equal to 700 but lower than 800 = C

Total Course Points greater than or equal to 600 but lower than 700 = D

Total Course Points less than 600 = F

It is impossible to tell if there will be a curve for this class; hence, we will look at the grades at the end of the semester to see if one were warranted.

Blinn College Policies

Blinn College policies on civility, class attendance; scholastic integrity; students with disabilities; final grade appeals; and electronic devices as stated in the Blinn College Student Handbook, Faculty Handbook, Blinn College Catalog and specific technical program handbooks. All policies, guidelines and procedures in the Student and Faculty Handbook and the Board and Administrative Policy Manuals are applicable to this course

Civility Statement

Members of the Blinn College community, which includes faculty, staff and students, are expected to act honestly and responsibly in all aspects of campus life. Blinn College holds all members accountable for their actions and words. Therefore, all members should commit themselves to behave in a manner that recognizes personal respect and demonstrates concern for the personal dignity, rights, and freedoms of every member of the College community, including respect for College property and the physical and intellectual property of others.

      Civility Notification Statement. If a student is asked to leave the classroom because of uncivil behavior, the student may not return to that class until he or she arranges a conference with the instructor; it is the student’s responsibility to arrange for this conference. 

      This statement reflects step one in a possible four step process.  The Incivility Protocol is detailed in the Blinn College Student Handbook.

Attendance Policy

The College District believes that class attendance is essential for student success; therefore, students are required to promptly and regularly attend all their classes. A record of attendance will be maintained from the first day of classes and/or the first day the student’s name appears on the roster through final examinations. If a student has one week’s worth of unexcused absences during the semester, he or she will be sent an e-mail by the College District requiring the student to contact his or her instructor and schedule a conference immediately to discuss his/her attendance issues. Should the student accumulate two weeks’ worth of unexcused absences, he or she will be administratively withdrawn from class.

There are four forms of excused absences recognized by the institution:

  1. observance of religious holy days—The student should notify his or her instructor(s) not later than the 15th day of the semester concerning the specific date(s) that the student will be absent for any religious holy day(s);
  2. representing the College District at an official institutional function;
  3. high school dual credit students representing the independent school district at an official institutional function; and
  4. military service.

Other absences may be considered excused at the discretion of the faculty member with appropriate documentation.  A student enrolled in a developmental course is subject to College District-mandated attendance policies. Failure to attend developmental classes shall result in removal from the course as defined by the College District.

It is the student’s responsibility to officially drop a class he or she is no longer attending.  To officially drop a class the student must obtain the class withdrawal form from Enrollment Services, complete the class withdrawal form, secure the required signatures, and return the completed form to Enrollment Services. The last day to drop with a Q is according to the Academic Calendar.

Scholastic Integrity

Blinn College does not tolerate cheating, plagiarism, or any other act of dishonesty with regard to the course in which you are enrolled.  The following text defines the faculty member’s responsibility with regard to the scholastic integrity expectation for this and all courses at Blinn College.

It is the responsibility of faculty members to maintain scholastic integrity at the College District by refusing to tolerate any form of scholastic dishonesty.  Adequate control of test materials, strict supervision during testing, and other preventive measures should be utilized, as necessary, to prevent cheating or plagiarism.  If there is compelling evidence that a student is involved in cheating or plagiarism, the instructor should assume responsibility and address the infraction.  Likewise, any student accused of scholastic dishonesty is entitled to due process as outlined in Blinn College Board Policy FLB (Local).  The Scholastic Integrity Policy is located in the Blinn College Student Handbook. In a case of scholastic dishonesty, it is critical that written documentation be maintained at each level throughout the process.

Students with Disabilities

Blinn College is dedicated to providing the least restrictive learning environment for all students. Support services for students with documented disabilities are provided on an individual basis, upon request. Requests for services should be made directly to the Office of Special Populations serving the campus of your choice.  For the Bryan campus, the Office of Special Populations (Administration Building) can be reached at (979)209-7251.  The Brenham, Sealy and Schulenburg campuses are served by the Office of Special Populations on the Brenham campus (Administration Building Room 104) and can be reached at (979)830-4157.  Additional information can be found at

Final Grade Appeal

If a student wishes to appeal a final grade in a course, Blinn College Board Policy FLDB (Local), Course Grade Complaints, outlines the timeline for the appeal and the four steps in the appeal.  This policy is located in the Blinn College Student Handbook.

Electronic Devices

All the functions of all personal electronic devices designed for communication and/or entertainment (cell phones, pagers, beepers, iPods, and similar devices) must be turned off and kept out of sight in all College District classrooms and associated laboratories.  Any noncompliance with this policy shall be addressed in accordance with the College District civility policy (administrative policy).  This information is contained in Blinn College Board Policy FLB (Local).

Course Policies

Attendance is required. Blinn College believes that class attendance is essential for student success. Yes, I will take roll. Therefore, students are expected to report promptly and regularly to all their classes. There are three types of excused absence officially recognized by Blinn: (1) Observance of religious holy days. The student should notify his/her instructor no later than the 15th day of the semester concerning the specific date(s) that the student will be absent; (2) Representing Blinn College at an official institutional function, (3) official involvement in a high school activity for “dual credit” students, and (4) required military service will also be considered an excused absence. Other absences may be considered excusable at the instructor’s discretion with verifiable documentation. A severe personal problem, such as an illness or a death in the family may, with adequate documentation, warrant special academic consideration during the ongoing term for making up certain work or turning in certain materials late. However, the difficult situation is not in itself an excuse for failure to meet the course requirements. If a situation arises, it is the student’s responsibility to inform the instructor immediately of the situation and the associated circumstances. Make-up work may not be given for unexcused absences. If a student has a week’s worth of absences (two absences) during the semester, he/she will be sent an email by the College requiring the student to contact his/her instructor and schedule a conference immediately to discuss his/her attendance issues. If the student subsequently accumulates two weeks’ worth ( 4 absences) of absences, he/she will be administratively withdrawn from class. Remember, you must attend all labs; any absence in the lab counts as one day absence, as well.

There has been much discussion about the flu lately. If you think that you have the flu, please notify me, and don’t come to class. However, you need to inform me via email as soon as possible that you are about to miss, or have missed a class.

Problem Resolution. If you hsve a complaint about your class, you should first request a conference with your instructor to try and resolve the problems or issues. If the problems or issues cannot be resolved at the instructor level, you shpoulf request a conference with the division chair, Mr. Dwight Bohlmeyer, Science 241, [email protected].

New Laboratory Rules. For the laboratory component I will implement new rules this semester. As soon as you are finished with an experiment, you need to clean and dry your glassware and place it on your bench top so that I can verify that you have finished the experiment and I can then sign your data sheets. If you put away the glassware before I have a chance to verify that you have finished, I will deduct 5 points from your lab report.

Eating and drinking are not allowed in the classrooms or laboratory.




Course calendar and related activities
When Topic Notes




This course covers Chapters 1-10 and Chapter 18 in the textbook.See the attached tentative schedule below:

CHEM 1411 305 Schedule as of 8/26/13


Date                                      Lecture                                                                                 Lab                                                                                                                                         August

Mon      8/26                       Introduction/Ch.1                                                           Safety/Lab Intro              

Wed      8/28                       Ch. 1/ 2   Lecture Quiz 1                                                 Experiment 1


Mon      9/2                          --------------------------Holiday-------------------------------

Wed      9/4                         Ch. 2      Lecture Quiz 2                                                   Experiment 2

Mon      9/9                         Ch. 2/3                                                                                  Ch. 3/ Bonus Quiz I

Wed      9/11                       Ch. 3     Lecture Quiz 3                                                    Experiment 3

Mon      9/16                       Ch. 3      Bonus Quiz II                                                     Review                

Wed      9/18                       EXAM I Chapters 1/2/3                                                  Ch. 4

Mon      9/23                       Ch. 4                                                                                      Experiment 4

Wed      9/25                       Ch. 4      Lecture Quiz 4                                                   Ch. 4

Mon      9/30                       Ch. 5      Bon. Quiz III                                                       Experiment 8    


Wed      10/2                       Ch. 5      Lecture Quiz 5                                                   Ch. 5     

Mon      10/7                       Ch. 5     Bonus Quiz IV                                                     Experiment 9                                                    

Wed      10/9                       Exam II Chapters 4/5                                                      Ch. 6     

Mon      10/14                     Ch. 6                                                                                      Ch. 6 Lecture Quiz 6       

Wed      10/16                     Ch. 6      Lecture Quiz 7                                                   Ch. 7

Mon      10/21                     Ch. 7      Bonus Quiz V                                                     Experiment 5

Wed      10/23                     Ch. 7      Lecture Quiz 8                                                   Experiment 6

Mon      10/28                     Ch. 7      Bonus Quiz VI                                                    Review                

Wed      10/30                     Exam III Chapters 6/7                                                     Ch. 8


Mon      11/4                       Ch. 8                                                                                      Experiment 7                    

Wed      11/6                       Ch. 8      Lecture Quiz 9                                                   Ch. 8

Mon      11/11                     Ch. 8/9 Lecture Quiz 10                                                 Ch. 9

Wed      11/13                     Ch. 9      Bonus Quiz VII                                                  Experiment 11

Mon      11/18                     Ch. 9/10 Lecture Quiz 11                                               Ch. 10

Wed      11/20                     Ch. 10    Lecture Quiz 12                                                Experiment 12

Mon      11/25                     Ch. 10    Bonus Quiz VIII                                                 Ch. 10                                   

Thanksgiving Break 11/27 to 11/29

Mon      12/2                       Exam IV Chapters 8/9/10                                              Bonus Quiz IX

Wed      12/4                       Review                                                                                 Review

Mon      12/9                       EXAM V Comprehensive Optional Exam                               Review



FINAL EXAM - Friday, December 13, 2011 will be scheduled from 12:45 pm. to 2:45 p.m. in the same room as your class.

Please note: The last day to drop this class with a Q (Q Drop) is on Friday, November 15, 2013.