Chemistry

Students may complete a major or minor in Chemistry. Within the major, students may complete a minor in computational methods or education. Concentrations in biological chemistry, environmental studies or geochemistry may be completed within the major. Students may complete an M.A. in the combined A.B./M.A. program.

Faculty

Sharon J. Nieter Burgmayer, Professor
Michelle M. Francl, Professor (on leave semester II)
Jonas I. Goldsmith, Assistant Professor
Krynn DeArman Lukacs, Senior Laboratory Lecturer and Major Adviser
William P. Malachowski, Associate Professor
Frank B. Mallory, Professor
Maryellen Nerz-Stormes, Senior Laboratory Lecturer
Susan A. White, Professor and Chair

The undergraduate course program in Chemistry is designed to give students a sound background in both theoretical and practical aspects of four main fields: organic chemistry, physical chemistry, inorganic chemistry and biological chemistry. Furthermore, students may design courses of study that emphasize chemistry’s connections to biology, earth sciences and computer science. Laboratory work is emphasized to provide students with modern training in experimental skills and analytical techniques. The core program, consisting of courses at the 100 level and 200 level, covers fundamental principles of chemistry. This core program provides the basis for advanced work at the 300 level and 400 level, in which students encounter contemporary problems in chemistry and interdisciplinary fields and the progress that is being made toward solving them.

Major Requirements

The requirements for a standard major in chemistry include the following 11 courses (or their equivalents): CHEM 103 or 113, 104, 211, 212, 221, 222, 231, 242, 251 and 252, and any two courses selected from among CHEM 311, 312, 321, 322, 332, 345 or any chemistry course at the 500 level. Other required courses are MATH 101, 102 and 201 and PHYS 121/122 or 101/102 (or their equivalents). PHYS 121/122 is the recommended sequence. Students who have completed 101/102, as well as any students planning graduate work in chemistry, should consider taking PHYS 201. All A.B. recipients who complete this program with two semesters of CHEM 403 are certified by the American Chemical Society as having met that society’s high standards for an undergraduate degree in chemistry. This is the program recommended for students intending to pursue graduate studies in chemistry.

Majors are encouraged to take additional chemistry courses at the 300 (or 500) level and at the 400 (research) level beyond the requirements of the standard program. Additional courses in mathematics and other natural sciences can contribute breadth to the chemistry major. Students with a strong interest in an allied field, such as biochemistry, geochemistry, environmental chemistry, computational chemistry or education may elect a minor or concentration in the appropriate field. Upon consultation with major advisers in both fields students may select three of the four core courses, 221, 222, 231 and 242, and appropriate 300-level electives.

A typical schedule for the standard chemistry major involves taking CHEM 103 or 113 and 104 and MATH 101/102 in the first year; CHEM 211 and 212, MATH 201, and PHYS 121/122 or 101/102 in the sophomore year; CHEM 221, 222, 231, 242, 251 and 252 in the junior year; and appropriate advanced courses in the senior year. Note that MATH 201 (a fall course) or its equivalent should be completed by the end of the sophomore year. Students contemplating a chemistry major are urged to consult with the major adviser as early as possible. Those planning an interdisciplinary chemistry major should consult advisers in both departments as soon as possible.

Honors

The A.B. degree with honors in chemistry will be awarded to students who complete the major in chemistry and also meet the following further requirements: two semesters of supervised research in chemistry (CHEM 403) with a grade of at least 3.3 in each semester; the submission of an acceptable paper describing the results of that research; an additional semester of work at the 300 level (or 500 level) in chemistry beyond the two advanced courses required for the standard chemistry major; and a grade point average, calculated at the end of the senior year, of at least 3.7 in all chemistry courses taken.

Minor Requirements

A student may qualify for a minor in chemistry by completing a total of 6.5 courses in chemistry, one of which must be either CHEM 221 or 222 with either CHEM 251 or 252. BIOL 341 or 343 may be counted as one of the required six courses. At least two of the six courses must be taken at Bryn Mawr.

Minor in Computational Methods

Students may receive an A.B. degree in chemistry with a computational minor by fulfilling the core requirements in chemistry (CHEM 103 or 113, 104, 211, 212, 251 and 252) and three courses selected from 221, 222, 231 and 242, two advanced courses including CHEM 322 and CMSC 376, and by completing CMSC 110 or 205, 206, 231 and one of the following: 212, 225, 245, 246, 330, or 340. The courses selected to fulfill this minor must be approved by the major advisers in Chemistry and Computer Science.

Minor in Education

Students may receive an A.B. degree in chemistry with an education minor by fulfilling the core requirements in chemistry (CHEM 103 or 113, 104, 211, 212, 251 and 252) and three courses selected from 221, 222, 231 and 242, three advanced courses selected from CHEM 403 or electives in chemistry or education, and by completing EDUC 200, 310, 311 and 240 or 250. The courses selected to fulfill this minor must be approved by the major advisers in Chemistry and Education. Of the three advanced courses, at least one must be a chemistry course at or above the 300-level. Interested students are encouraged to investigate the 5th-year certification option offered through the Education Program (see page 135).

Concentration in Biological Chemistry

Students may receive an A.B. degree in chemistry with a concentration in biological chemistry by fulfilling the requirements for a major in chemistry, including CHEM 345 as one of the two required advanced courses, and also by completing two semesters of work in biology selected from BIOL 201 or 255, and BIOL 376 or their Haverford equivalents. The two biology courses chosen to fulfill this requirement must be approved by the major adviser.

Concentration in Environmental Studies

Students may receive an A.B. degree in chemistry with a concentration in environmental studies by fulfilling the core requirements in chemistry (CHEM 103 or 113, 104, 211, 212, 251, 252) and three courses selected from 221, 222, 231 and 242, two advanced courses including a chemistry elective and GEOL 302 or 397, and by completing BIOL 220 and GEOL 103 and one course listed under “Humans in the Environment” and two courses listed under “Planning and Policy” (see page 158). The courses selected to fulfill this concentration must be approved by the major advisers in Chemistry and Environmental Studies.

Concentration in Geochemistry

Students may receive an A.B. degree in chemistry with a concentration in geochemistry by fulfilling the core requirements in chemistry (CHEM 103 or 113, 104, 211, 212, 251, 252) and three courses selected from 221, 222, 231 and 242, one advanced course selected from CHEM 322 or 332, and by completing three geology courses selected from GEOL 201, 202, 301 or 302. The courses selected to fulfill this concentration must be approved by the major advisers in Chemistry and Geology.

A.B./M.A. Program

To earn an M.A. degree in chemistry in the College’s A.B./M.A. program, a student must complete the requirements for an undergraduate chemistry major and also must complete six units of graduate level work in chemistry. Of these six units, as many as two units may be undergraduate courses at the 300 level taken for graduate credit (these same two courses may be used to fulfill the major requirements for the A.B. degree), at least two units must be graduate seminars at the 500 level, and two units must be graduate research at the 700 level leading to the submission of an acceptable M.A. thesis. Other requirements are a written final examination covering material in the candidate’s special field and an oral examination.

CHEM B100 The Stuff of Art

An introduction to chemistry through fine arts, this course emphasizes the close relationship of the fine arts, especially painting, to the development of chemistry and its practice. The historical role of the material in the arts, in alchemy and in the developing science of chemistry, will be discussed, as well as the synergy between these areas. Relevant principles of chemistry will be illustrated through the handling, synthesis and/or transformations of the material. This course does not count towards chemistry major requirements, and is not suitable for premedical programs. Lecture 90 minutes, laboratory three hours a week. Enrollment limited to 20. (Burgmayer, Division IIL; cross-listed as HART B100) Not offered in 2008-09.

CHEM B103 General Chemistry I

For students with some background in chemistry. Students with strong preparation are directed to consider CHEM 113. Sections usually have a maximum of 50 students. Topics include aqueous solutions and solubility; the electronic structure of atoms and molecules; radiochemistry. Examples in lecture and laboratory include environmental sciences, material sciences and biological chemistry. Lecture three hours, recitation one hour and laboratory three hours a week. May include individual conferences, evening problem or peer-led instruction sessions. Prerequisite: math readiness or permission of instructor. (Goldsmith, Lukacs, White, Division IIL and Quantitative Skills)

CHEM B104 General Chemistry II

A continuation of CHEM 103 or 113. Topics include chemical reactions; introduction to thermodynamics and chemical equilibria; electrochemistry; chemical kinetics. Lecture three hours, recitation one hour and laboratory three hours a week. May include individual conferences, evening problem or peer-led instruction sessions. Prerequisite: CHEM 103 or 113 with a grade of at least 2.0. (Burgmayer, Goldsmith, Lukacs, Division IIL and Quantitative Skills)

CHEM B113 General Chemistry

A half-unit course for students with strong preparation in chemistry, but who are not ready to take CHEM 211 (Organic Chemistry). Topics include aqueous solutions and solubility; the electronic structure of atoms and molecules; radiochemistry. Recitation one hour, laboratory three hours a week. Enrollment limited to 25 first-year students. Prerequisite: Advanced Placement score of 3 (or International Baccalaureate equivalent), or satisfactory performance on Bryn Mawr’s placement test given on the first day of class, or permission of instructor. Does not meet Division II requirement by itself; students must continue with CHEM 104 to receive Division II credit. (Burgmayer, Lukacs)

CHEM B211 Organic Chemistry I

An introduction to the principles of organic chemistry, including synthetic and spectroscopic techniques. Lecture three hours, recitation one hour and laboratory five hours a week. Prerequisite: CHEM 104 with a grade of at least 2.0. (Mallory, Nerz-Stormes, Division IIL)

CHEM B212 Organic Chemistry II

A continuation of CHEM 211 with an exploration of complex chemical reactions and syntheses utilizing structure-reactivity principles. Lecture three hours, recitation one hour and laboratory five hours a week. Prerequisite: CHEM 211 with a grade of at least 2.0. (Malachowski, Nerz-Stormes, Division IIL)

CHEM B221 Physical Chemistry I

Introduction to quantum theory and spectroscopy. Atomic and molecular structure; molecular modeling; rotational, vibrational, electronic and magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Lecture three hours. Prerequisites: CHEM 104, PHYS 121 or 103 and MATH 201. May be taken concurrently with CHEM 211 and PHYS 121 or 103. (Francl, Division IIL)

CHEM B222 Physical Chemistry II

Modern thermodynamics, with application to phase equilibria, interfacial phenomena and chemical equilibria; statistical mechanics; chemical dynamics. Kinetic theory of gases; chemical kinetics. Lecture three hours. Prerequisites: CHEM 104, PHYS 122 or 102 and MATH 201. May be taken concurrently with CHEM 212 and PHYS 122 or 102. (Goldsmith, Division IIL)

CHEM B231 Inorganic Chemistry

Bonding theory; structures and properties of ionic solids; symmetry; crystal field theory; structures, spectroscopy, stereochemistry, reactions and reaction mechanisms of coordination compounds; acid-base concepts; descriptive chemistry of main group elements. Lecture three hours a week. Prerequisite: CHEM 212. (Burgmayer, Division IIL)

CHEM B242 Biological Chemistry

The structure, chemistry and function of amino acids, proteins, lipids, polysaccharides and nucleic acids; enzyme kinetics; metabolic relationships of carbohydrates, lipids and amino acids, and the control of various pathways; protein synthesis. Lecture three hours a week. Prerequisite: CHEM 212. (White, Division IIL)

CHEM B251 Research Methodology in Chemistry I

This laboratory course integrates advanced concepts in chemistry from biological, inorganic, organic and physical chemistry. Students will gain experience in the use of departmental research instruments and in scientific literature searches, record-keeping and writing. One hour of lecture and five hours of laboratory per week. Prerequisite: CHEM 212. Corequisite: CHEM 221 or 242. 0.5 credit/semester. (Goldsmith, Malachowski)

CHEM B252 Research Methodology in Chemistry II

This laboratory course integrates advanced concepts in chemistry from biological, inorganic, organic and physical chemistry. Students will gain experience in the use of departmental research instruments and in scientific literature searches, record-keeping and writing. One hour of lecture and five hours of laboratory per week. Prerequisite: CHEM 212. Corequisite: CHEM 222 or 231. (Burgmayer)

CHEM B311 Advanced Organic Chemistry

A survey of the methods and concepts used in the synthesis of complex organic molecules. Lecture three hours a week. Prerequisites: CHEM 212 and 222. (Malachowski, Division II)

CHEM B312 Advanced Organic Chemistry

Principles of physical organic chemistry with emphasis on reaction mechanisms, reactive intermediates and stereochemistry. Lecture three hours a week. Prerequisites: CHEM 212 and 222. (Mallory, Division II)

CHEM B321 Advanced Physical Chemistry: Quantum Chemistry

Quantum mechanics and its application to problems in chemistry. Topics will include molecular orbital theory, density functional theory. Readings and problem sets will be supplemented with material from the current research literature. Students will gain experience with programming in Mathematica. Prerequisites: CHEM 221 and 222 or permission of the instructor. Lecture/seminar three hours per week. (Francl, Division II)

CHEM B322 Advanced Physical Chemistry: Mathematical Modeling of Natural Processes

An interdisciplinary approach to computational models in fields ranging from biology to chemistry, physics and geology. Lecture three hours per week. Prerequisites: MATH 201 and at least junior-level standing in a science major or permission of the instructor. This course may be counted as a Mathematics elective. (Francl, Division II) Not offered in 2008-09.

CHEM B332 Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

Organometallic chemistry, including discussion of structure and bonding, reaction types, and catalysis; bioinorganic chemistry, illustrating structural, enzymatic and pharmaceutical applications of transition metals in biological chemistry. Lecture three hours per week. Prerequisites: CHEM 231 and 242 or permission of the instructor. (Burgmayer, Division II) Not offered in 2008-09.

CHEM B345 Advanced Biological Chemistry: HIV and Malaria

Physical biochemistry of nucleic acids and proteins; spectroscopic, structural and molecular biological techniques for studying macromolecules. Applications to pathogenic organisms, genomics and bioinformatics. Textbook readings will be supplemented with articles from the recent literature. Lecture/seminar three hours a week. Prerequisites: any course in biochemistry or permission of instructor. (White, Division II)

CHEM B403 Supervised Research

Many individual research projects are available, each under the supervision of a member of the faculty. Laboratory at least 10 hours a week. Oral or written presentations are required at the end of each semester. Prerequisite: permission of faculty supervisor. (staff, Division II)

Graduate seminars in chemistry are open to qualified undergraduates with the permission of the department.

Updated August 25, 2008 by Tracy Kellmer