Chemistry Department

Professor: Miriam Rossi; Associate Professors: Marianne H. Begemann, Stuart L. Belli, Eric S. Eberhardt, Sarjit Kaur (Chair), Christopher J. Smartab; Assistant Professors: Zachery J. Donhauser, Joseph M. Tanskib; ­Visiting Assistant Professor: Scott Allen; Lecturer and Coordinator of Laboratory Instruction: Christina N. Hammond; Lecturer and Curator of Instrumentation: Edith C. Stout; Lecturer: David Nellis; Research Professor: Curt W. Beck.

ab Absent on leave for the year.

Requirements for Concentration: Chemistry 108/109 or 125 or the equivalent as approved by the department; Chemistry 244 and 245 or the equivalent as approved by the department; 8 units to include Chemistry 300, 350, 352, 353, 354, 362, and 2 units of additional graded 300-level courses, one of which must be taken senior year. Chemistry 198, 298, and 399 do not count toward these 8 units. Mathematics 121/122 or 125; Physics 113/114. No courses required for the chemistry major may be elected on an NRO basis.

Recommendations: A reading knowledge of French, German, Russian, or Japanese, and courses in allied sciences. Students who wish to graduate with cer­ti­fi­cation by the American Chemical Society should consult the department. Enter­ing students who plan to concentrate in chemistry are advised to elect both chem­istry and mathematics in the freshman year and physics in the freshman or sophomore year.

Teaching Certification: Students who wish to obtain secondary certification in Chemistry should consult both the Chemistry and Education Departments for appropriate course requirements.

Requirements for B.A.-M.A.: The candidate must satisfy all requirements for the B.A. degree as described above. In addition, 8 units of advanced work are required as follows: 3 to 5 units of 300-level courses; 2 units of 400-level courses; 1 to 3 units are credited for the thesis, which is based on a research project normally carried out during the fourth year. Chemistry 326, 342, 357, or 450, must be included among the advanced courses elected to fulfill the requirements of the joint degree. For students selecting thesis research in biochemistry or an inter-disciplinary area, advanced courses in biology, biochemistry, mathematics, and physics may, with the permission of the adviser, be substituted for some of the required courses in chemistry. Further information regarding the thesis may be found in the separate publication, “Graduate Study in Chemistry at Vassar College.’’ Consult the graduate student adviser in the department.

Advisers: Class of 2006, Ms. Kaur; Class of 2007, Ms. Rossi; Class of 2008, Ms. Begemann; Correlate Sequence, Ms. Begemann.

Correlate Sequence in Chemistry: A correlate sequence in chemistry provides students interested in careers ranging from public health to patent law an excellent complement to their major field of study. The chemistry correlate sequence is designed to combine a basic foundation in chemistry with the flexibility to choose upper-level chemistry courses relevant to the student’s particular interests. Students considering careers in such areas as art conservation, public policy relating to the sciences, scientific ethics, archeochemistry, the history of science, law or public health may benefit from a course of study in chemistry. This correlate is not intended for students majoring in closely related disciplines, such as biology or biochemistry, and therefore not more than one course can be credited towards both the correlate and the student’s major. The correlate consists of 61⁄2 units distributed as follows:

Required Courses: Units

General Chemistry with lab (Chemistry 108/109) 2 OR

Chemical Principles with lab (Chemistry 125) 1

Organic Chemistry with lab (Chemistry 244/245) 2

Minimum of two classes from the following: (2)

Chemistry 272Biochemistry

Chemistry 323Protein Chemistry

Chemistry 326Inorganic Chemistry

Chemistry 342Organic Chemistry

Chemistry 350Physical Chemistry: Thermodynamics and Chemical Kinetics

Chemistry 352Physical Chemistry: Molecular Structure

Chemistry 357Chemical Physics

Chemistry 362Instrumental Analysis

One half unit of laboratory work at the advanced level: (1⁄2)

(Completion of chemistry 362 from the previous list satisfies this requirement)

Chemistry 298Independent Research

Chemistry 353 or 354Physical Chemistry Laboratory

Chemistry 370Advanced Laboratory

I. Introductory

108a/109b. General Chemistry (1)

This course covers fundamental aspects of general chemistry, including descriptive chemistry, chemical reactions, stoichiometry, atomic and molecular structure, states of matter, properties of solutions, thermodynamics, kinetics, equilibria, elec-trochemistry, and nuclear chemistry. Most of the work is quantitative in nature. The department.

Three 50-minute lectures; one 4-hour laboratory.

125a. Chemical Principles (1)

This course is designed to cover pertinent aspects of general chemistry in one semester to prepare students with a strong chemistry background for Organic Chemistry in the second semester of the year. The material covered includes chemical reactions, stoichiometry, atomic and molecular structure, and general chemical physics, emphasizing the fundamental aspects of and connections between equilibria, electrochemistry, thermodynamics, and kinetics. Mr. Tanski.

Three 50 minute lectures; one 4 hour laboratory.

II. Intermediate

244a or b. Organic Chemistry: Structure and Properties (1)

An introduction to the structure of organic molecules and to their nomenclature. Among the properties of organic compounds, shape, charge distribution, and spectroscopic properties are emphasized. Laboratory work includes isolation, physical transformations and identification of organic compounds including the application of gas chromatography and infrared and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Ms. Kaur, Mr. Allen.

Prerequisite: Chemistry 109 or 125.

Three 50-minute lectures; one 4-hour laboratory.

245a or b. Organic Chemistry: Reactions and Mechanisms (1)

A study of the reactions of organic compounds from a mechanistic point of view. Laboratory work includes synthesis, qualitative analysis, and quantitative investigation of reaction rates and equilibria which emphasize mechanistic considerations. Ms. Kaur, Mr. Allen.

Prerequisite: Chemistry 244.

Three 50-minute lectures; one 4-hour laboratory.

270 Computational Methods in the Sciences (1⁄2)

(Same as Physics 270)

272b. Biochemistry (1)

(Same as Biology 272)

297 Reading Course (1⁄2)

298 Independent Research (1⁄2 or 1)

Students perform independent chemistry research under the direction of a faculty member of their choosing. Attendance at regularly scheduled department seminars/events is required to satisfactorily complete the course. The department.

III. Advanced

300a or b. Senior Thesis (1)

323b. Protein Chemistry (1)

A detailed study of the structure and function of proteins. Structure determination, mechanisms of catalysis and regulation, and the interactions of enzymes in complex systems will be treated. Mr. Eberhardt.

Prerequisite: Chemistry 350 (may be corequisite), or 272.

324 Molecular Biology (1)

(Same as Biology 324)

326a or b. Inorganic Chemistry (1)

An introduction to structure and reactivity of inorganic, coordination, and organometallic compounds, including the following topics: chemical applications of group theory, atomic and molecular structure, theories of bonding, the solid state, coordination chemistry, inorganic reaction mechanisms, and organometallic chemistry. A laboratory portion of this class includes selected experiments which reinforce these concepts. Ms. Rossi, Mr. Tanski.

Prerequisite: Chemistry 352, or permission of instructor.

[335a or b. Advanced Environmental Chemistry] (1)

Physical and chemical mechanisms for delineating the fate of pollutants are theoretically defined and applied to model environmental systems. Consideration is also given to characterizing the chemistry of natural systems. Topics covered include: thermodynamics and equilibria of complex systems; chemodynamics; photochemical reaction mechanisms, redox chemistry in natural waters; and chemical reactions in the air, soil, and water environments. Mr. Belli.

Prerequisite: Chemistry 350 or permission of instructor.

342b. Organic Chemistry (1)

Selected topics in organic chemistry such as stereochemistry, conformational analysis, carbanions, carbocations, radicals, kinetic and thermodynamic control of reactions, mechanisms, synthesis. The department.

Prerequisites: Chemistry 245, 350, or permission of instructor.

350b. Physical Chemistry: Thermodynamics and Chemical Kinetics (1)

Equations of state for gases; the laws of thermodynamics; solutions and phase equilibria; chemical equilibrium and chemical kinetics. Mr. Donhauser.

Prerequisites: Chemistry 245; Physics 113, 114; Mathematics 121/122 or 125.

352a. Physical Chemistry: Molecular Structure (1)

Introductory wave mechanics and bonding theories; electrical and magnetic properties of molecules; spectroscopy; statistical mechanics. Ms. Begemann.

Prerequisites: Chemistry 245; Physics 113, 114; Mathematics 121/122 or 125.

353b, 354a. Physical Chemistry Laboratory (1⁄2)

Selected experiments to teach techniques and to demonstrate principles introduced in the lectures. Instructor to be announced, Ms. Begemann.

Corequisites: Chemistry 350, 352.

One 4-hour laboratory.

357 Chemical Physics (1)

The course includes selected topics which are of interest to chemistry majors as well as biochemistry and physics majors. Possible topics include applications of group theory, interaction of radiation with matter, molecular spectroscopy, reaction kinetics, reaction rate theory, and statistical mechanics. The material covered in any particular semester depends on the mutual interests of the instructor and the students. Ms. Begemann.

Prerequisites: Chemistry 350 and 352 or by permission of instructor.

362b. Instrumental Analysis (11⁄2)

An introduction to chemical analysis, this course covers the theoretical and practical aspects of spectroscopic, electrochemical, and chromatographic ­methods, including topics in instrumentation, statistics, and chemometrics. Mr. Belli.

Prerequisite: Chemistry 245 or permission of instructor.

Includes one 4-hour laboratory.

365a or b. Spectrometric Identification of Organic Compounds (1⁄2)

This course focuses on the use of modern analytical instrumentation to identify unknown organic compounds. Students get extensive hands-on experience using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR) (1H, 13C, DEPT, COSY, HETCOR), Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), and Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS). Working with weekly unknowns, students learn to interpret spectra and assemble the data necessary to support both a formula and structure determination. Ms. Stout.

Prerequisite: Chemistry 245.

One 4-hour laboratory.

370a or b. Advanced Laboratory (1⁄2)

Advanced laboratory work may be elected in the field of organic, analytical, physical, inorganic, biochemistry, or environmental chemistry. The department.

Prerequisite or corequisite: a 300-level course in the pertinent field.

One 4-hour laboratory.

[382b. Special Topics in Organic Chemistry: Introduction to Polymer Chemistry]+F344 (1)

Properties and uses of selected polymers (thermally stable, conducting, and biodegradable). This course includes organic and kinetic aspects of polymerizations, characterization techniques for structure determination, thermal and ­mechanical properties, and measurement of molecular weight and distribution. Laboratory techniques and experiments leading to synthesis, characterization and physical properties of selected polymers (synthesized or commercially available polymers) are emphasized. Ms. Kaur.

Prerequisites: Chemistry 244/245 or permission of instructor.

Two 50-minute lectures; one 4-hour laboratory.

Not offered in 2005/06.

384a. Structural Chemistry and Biochemistry (1)

(Same as Biochemistry 384) In this course, principles and methods regarding the structure of molecules and macromolecules are studied with an emphasis on selected topics in chemistry and biochemistry. Ms. Rossi.

Prerequisite: 350 or permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute lectures.

399 Senior Independent Research (1⁄2 or 1)

Students perform independent chemistry research under the direction of a faculty member of their choosing. Attendance at regularly scheduled department seminars/events is required to satisfactorily complete the course. The department.

Open only to seniors.

IV. Graduate

Advanced courses in the following areas will be offered at the discretion of the department and according to the needs of graduate students.

426 Advanced Inorganic Chemistry: Special Topics (1)

440 Synthetic Organic Chemistry (1)

441 Environmental Chemistry: Special Topics (1)

445 Theoretical Organic Chemistry (1)

450 Physical Chemistry (1)

463 Analytical Chemistry: Special Topics (1)

472 Biochemistry: Special Topics (1)