Chemistry 204

General Chemistry II

Fall 2015

3 Credit Hours



Dr. Gary D. Anderson 
Department of Chemistry 
Marshall University 
Huntington, WV   25755

Web Page

Prerequisites: Chemistry 203.  It doesn't matter whether you took the prerequisite in the regular classroom or by the internet as long as you have completed the course with a passing grade.  I would recommend that you not take 204 unless you made at least a C in 203.

Course Description: A continuation of Chemistry 203 with emphasis on introductory organic and biochemistry.

Note for students with visual impairments: This course contains a substantial number of graphics files that cannot be adequately described as text equivalents. If you contact the instructor arrangements can be made to provide the source files for the graphics and/or Braille embossed high resolution graphics.

    Since this syllabus is rather long, I have included some hyperlinks to help you find specific information.

Required Materials
Target Dates and Deadlines
Grading Policies
How This Course Is Organized
Course Objectives
Mrshall University Course Policies
Time Requirement
Computer and Software Requirements
Contacting the Instructor
Instructor Biographical Information
List of Topics to Be Covered

Required Materials:

   The textbook that has been used in the past is fairly expensive and I don't think that you truly need it. I believe that there is sufficient material provided in the Lecture Notes portion of the course for you to understand the concepts and do well on the quizzes and exams. If it turns out that more materials are needed I will either post additional material or I will provide links to internet sites that have supplemental materials. In the worst case scenario the bookstore will be able to provide the old text very quickly. Please be sure to let me know if there are any topics where you think additional materials are needed. We have tried this approach for the last several terms and there was not even one student who submitted a request for more materials.

    You will need a basic scientific calculator.   You should be able to find a suitable calculator for around $15 or less.  I do not recommend that you buy an expensive calculator.  You will be better off with an inexpensive calculator that you can learn to use easily instead of with an expensive calculator with so many capabilities that you have a hard time learning how to use it.  The calculator that is installed as a part of Windows is a good example of what you need and, in fact, you may want to use it for the quizzes.

Molecular Models:  If you have a hard time visualizing some of the three-dimensional aspects you may want to purchase an inexpensive set of molecular models but I would recommend that you not pay more than about $15.  And, I would suggest that you wait until you find that you really need them before buying them.

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Exam Target Dates and Deadlines

    Students in this course have a maximum of one semester to complete the course.

   At the beginning you will only see icons for lecture notes for one topic and a quiz for that topic. You must make a score of 8 or more on any quiz before you will be able to see the next topic in the course. When you achieve an 8 the icons for the next topic lecture notes and quiz will automatically appear. You are not eligible to take an exam until you have completed all the quizzes in that Part of the course. For example, you must complete quiz #19 before you can take Exam I.

   Each exam has a Bonus Date, a Penalty Date, and an Last Access Date. If you complete an exam on or before the Bonus Date for that exam I will reward you by adding 20 points to your overall grade. If you do not complete the exam on or before the Penalty Date, I will subtract 20 points from your overall grade. If you do not complete an exam on or before the Last Access Date for that exam you will not be able to take the exam and you will receive a score of zero

   If you receive a score of zero on any of the first three exams because you didn't take it before the last acces date, you will be given access to the first topic in the next Part at that time.

Dates for Fall 2015 are:

Bonus Date
Penalty Date
Last Access Date
Exam I Friday, September 18, 2015 Friday, September 25, 2015 Friday, October 16, 2015
Exam II Monday, October 5, 2015 Monday, October 12, 2015 Monday, Novermber 2, 2015
Exam III Tuesday, Novermber 16, 2015 Tuesday, November 20, 2015 Friday, December 4, 2015
Exam IV Friday, December 4, 2015   Thursday, December 10, 2015
Final Exam Friday, December 4, 2015   Thursday, December 10, 2015

NOTE WELL.A score of zero will be recorded for any quiz or exam not completed on or before Thursday, December 10.

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    There will be four hour exams and a final exam in addition to the 64 quizzes.  The 64 quizzes are worth 10 points each.  The four hour exams are worth 240 points each and the final eam is worth 320 points.

So, it is possible to earn up to 640 points from the quizzes, up to 960 points from the four exams and up to 320 points from the final for a total of 1920 possible points in the course.

Letter grades will be then be assigned based on the following scale for the total points

    Since I want to encourage students to complete this course in a timely manner, I will add 20 points to your total if you take an hour exam on or before the target date for that exam.  On the other side of the coin, I will deduct 20 points from your total if you take an hour exam more than one week after the target date for that exam.  I will also add 20 points to your total if you complete the final exam more than one week before the deadline.  If you take full advantage of this incentive you can raise your grade by a close to half a letter grade.  On the other hand, failure to complete the coursework on schedule can cost you severely.  I will post reminders of the target dates on the bulletin board from time to time so be sure to check the bulletin board for this.
    The hour exams will be given on-line.  There is a time limit on the exams and it will be enforced by the computer -- no answers will be accepted after the time limit on an exam.  You will get the graded exam back with your score and feedback on your errors.  Exams are closed book, closed note. You are on your honor to take the exams without any assistance and without referring to any materials other than a basic periodic table.
    The final exam will be handled the same way as the hour exams. You only get one attempt on each exam and the time limit is enforced..
    The quizzes are all taken on-line and the scores and the correct answers are available to you as soon as you complete the quiz.  Quizzes are designed as learning tools rather than as grading tools so there is no time limit on quizzes. You can retake quizzes as many times as you like and only the highest score will count so you can feel free to retake a quiz as a way of studying for exams without having to worry about it hurting your grade.

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Organization of the Course:

    Chemistry is a subject that builds on a foundation.   You cannot understand the later topics unless you understand the earlier topics.  For this reason, I have used the “topic mastery” model for this course.  You cannot go on to a new topic until you have mastered the current one.  Each topic has a quiz associated with it and you must make a score of 8 (or higher) on the quiz before you can proceed.  You may take the quiz as many times as necessary but only the highest score will count.
    When you first start the course, only one topic will be available to you.  Whenever you complete a topic, a new one will become available.  All of the older ones will stay available so that you can review them as needed.
    I divided the course into 80 topics --  essentially starting a new topic at the point where I would normally end a lecture session in a regular course.  A normal one hour lecture would cover two or more of these topics so each topic would represent somewhere between 10 minutes and an hour of lecture time in a regular course.  You should be able to complete some topics in a few minutes but a few mayl take an hour or more.
    The course is divided into four roughly equal sized parts.  There is an hour exam after you complete each of these parts. You cannot take an exam until after you have completed all of the quizzes in that part of the course and you cannot take the final eam untlil you have completed Exam 4.  Click here for a detailed list of the topics.

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Course Objectives:

   This course is an introductory course in chemistry and is aimed specifically at the needs of those in the health related professions. At the end of this course, it is expected that the student will have
   The quizzes and exams are designed to test whether not the student is meeting achieving these objectives.
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Time Requirement

    NOTE WELL:  In a normal classroom setting for this course you would be expected to attend approximately 45 hours of lectures.  You would also be expected to spend roughly double that amount of time studying for the course outside of class.  The e-course format does not work magic -- you should expect to spend at least the same number of hours completing this course.  Do not put off working on the course and then expect to be able to complete it in a couple of days.  Be sure to try to meet the target dates so that you can successfully complete the course.

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Marshall University Course Policies

   By enrolling in this course, you agree to all Marshall University policies published in the current undergraduate catalog. The full text of most policies (listed below) can be found on-line at

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Computer and Software Requirements:

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Contacting the Instructor:

   Whenever you need help with the course or just want to ask a question about anything, you should feel free to contact me. I am semiretired and do not teach any classes other than online courses. I do not have an office on campus and I do not have a campus phone. The only reliable method for contacting me is by e-mail. I tend to check my e-mail about twice a day (even on weekends) and I tend to reply to e-mail as I receive it.  I am sometimes out of town for a long weekend from time to time but will normally have access to e-mail.  If I am going to be out of town and out of e-mail contact for more than a couple of days at a time I will warn you ahead of time.
    You may use the e-mail that is internal to the course by clicking on the Messages button in the menu on the left side of the page. If you select Create Message, then click on the "TO" button, the instructor will listed as Gary Anderson (Instructor) and will normally be on the first page of the list.
    Alternately, you may send e-mail to by any of the standard internet mail protocols.  I will normally respond by whichever method you used to send your message.  If you do not receive a response to an e-mail message within 48 hours you should assume that either your original message or my reply has gone astray in the e-mail system and you should resend the message.  If you have reason to believe that the Marshall email server is not working properly you may want to try sending the message to me at but I only check mail at that address about once a week unless the MU server is down.
    Please note that while we tend to think of e-mail as being a nearly instantaneous means of communication there are times that there are significant delays in e-mail transmissions.  Under certain circumstances it has been known to take as much as 48 hours for an e-mail message to get between a Marshall University account and an account at a local internet service provider.  In fact, I had one case where a student sent me an e-mail message from a Marshall address and it did not arrive until 33 days later.   If either server is especially busy or if the network is particularly busy you will see these delays.  So, be sure to plan ahead and send e-mail messages as early as possible to avoid problems from unpredicted delays.
    General announcements are posted on the course bulletin board and a copy of them is emailed to every student in the course at the time they are posted.

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Biographical Information:

    I received my B.S. in Chemistry and my M.S. from the University of Oklahoma.  I completed my Ph.D. at Florida State University in 1972.  My dissertation research was in the area of isolation of naturally occurring lactones from ragweeds (It's a good thing I am not allergic to pollen!).  I spent two years as a Post Doctoral Research Fellow at Stanford University working on synthesis of marine steroids.  While at Stanford, I worked with Professor Carl Djerassi (inventor of the birth control pill).
    I spent six years on the faculty at the University of Missouri-Kansas City (home of the Fighting Kangaroos) before joining the Marshall University faculty in 1981.  I have taught a wide variety of courses at Marshall including general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry, various advanced courses in organic chemistry, honors seminars, and even Visual Basic programming.  I was Chair of the department from 1982-1986.   One of my educational activities is to perform “Chemical Magic” shows in elementary, middle, and high schools.
    My research interests were originally in synthetic organic chemistry but they have gradually shifted to use of computers in organic chemistry and in chemical education.  I spent a sabbatical year at the University of California, Santa Cruz (home of the Banana Slugs) working on computational chemistry projects.
    My primary hobby is reading (especially science fiction and mysteries) but I do consider some of the things I do with computers to be hobby rather than work and I have been known to play the occasional computer game.
    I am very active in the American Chemical Society, serving as Councilor for the Central Ohio Valley Section and I am a member of the Local Section Activities Committee and the Leadership Advisory Board.  I am also very active in Alpha Chi Sigma, the Chemistry Professional Fraternity.  I was advisor for the Marshall University chapter for many years and served as Grand Master Alchemist (National President) for this organization that has collegiate chapters on 50 campuses and professional chapters in several large cities. I was a Trustee of the Alpha Chi Sigma Educational Foundaton for several years. I participate in a number of activites at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia.

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Topics to Be Covered in This Course

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