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Introductory Chemistry

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Language:  English
The textbook is designed to introduce chemistry to students who will take only one chemistry course in their academic career.
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The on-line textbook Introductory Chemistry is a brief, but succinct introduction to the fundamentals of chemistry.

The textbook is designed to introduce chemistry to students who will take only one chemistry course in their academic career. To this point certain chemistry topics are covered in a generalized manner. Special emphasis is given to certain areas to assure the student receives exposure that would not normally occur in a general chemistry course.

Special emphasis is given to organic chemistry and biological chemistry. These subjects are usually taught to students during the second and third years of four year college programs. In this way, students studying this text will receive some exposure to these important areas.

This textbook is intended for use by college level students who will take only one course in chemistry throughout their academic career.

The following is a list of areas that may require an introduction to chemistry but not a full two years of college chemistry.

Food Science - Pharmacy Technician

Safety and Health - Health Education

Mortuary Science - Nursing

Physical Therapy - Laboratory Technician

Environmental Science - Hazardous Material Control

Fire Investigation - Animal Science

Plant Science - Phlebotomy

If you are planning to go to medical school, you will need a more in depth course of “first year” chemistry. However, if you “live in fear” of college chemistry study my textbook as preparation. After all it’s free!

There are two goals that I have for this textbook. The first goal is to teach the “fundamentals” of chemistry without bogging the student down with heavy theory. The second goal is to teach basic critical thinking skills.

This is done by a textbook long building of a central problem solving theorem that is applied to nearly all of the problems in the book.

All of the problems presented in this text all fully worked with proper and correct answers. Do yourself a favor. Write the statement of the problems on a piece of paper, exit the text, and try to solve the problems. If you get stuck on a problem, refer back to the text. After several trials of the problems in this fashion you will probably find you have mastered the material.

If you have as much fun as I think you are going to reading and using this textbook, tell a friend about the textbook and the great services of

  • Introduction

  1. Standard Measurements
    1. Standard Units – The SI System
    2. Scientific Notation
    3. The Part per Million (ppm) System
    4. Significant Figures
    5. Unit Conversions
    6. Problem Solving and Critical Thinking Skills
  2. Distinctions and Classifications of Matter
    1. Types of Properties of Matter
    2. The History of Atomic Structure
    3. The Periodic Table
    4. Electronic Structure of Atoms
    5. Elements and Their Isotopes
  3. Chemical Bonding
    1. Types of Compounds
    2. Chemical Formulae
    3. Chemical Equations
    4. Naming Chemical Compounds
    5. Lewis Dot Structures
    6. Polar Molecules
  4. Chemical Reactions
    1. Balancing Chemical Equations
    2. Reduction-Oxidation (Redox) Reactions
    3. The Concept of the Mole
    4. Stoichiometric Calculations
    5. Limiting Reactants
  5. Properties of Gases
    1. Units of Gas Measurements
    2. The Kinetic-Molecular Gas Theory
    3. Basic Gas Laws
    4. The Ideal Gas Law
    5. Standard State Conditions and Molar Volume
    6. Partial Pressure of Gas Mixtures
  6. Chemistry of Solutions
    1. Types of Homogeneous Mixtures
    2. Solution Nomenclature
    3. Solution Properties
    4. Molarity
    5. Mole Fractions
    6. Colligative Properties
  7. Thermochemistry
    1. The Concepts of Heat and Energy
    2. Calculating Heat Content
    3. Exothermic and Endothermic Reactions
    4. Enthalpy Calculations: Hess’ Law
    5. States of Matter
    6. Phase Diagrams
  8. The Chemistry of Water: Acids and Bases
    1. Acid – Base Theories
    2. Naming Acids and Bases
    3. Strengths of Acids and Bases
    4. Calculation of pH
    5. Neutralization Reactions
    6. Buffer Solutions
  9. Electrochemistry
    1. The Galvanic Cell
    2. Standard Reduction Potentials
    3. Electrolysis
    4. Corrosion
    5. Batteries
    6. Fuel Cells
  10. Nuclear Chemistry
    1. Types of Radiation
    2. Measurement of Radiation and Radioactive Dose
    3. Radioactive Decay
    4. Fission
    5. Fusion
  11. Basic Organic Chemistry
    1. The Alkanes
    2. The Alkenes, Alkynes, and Aromatics
    3. Functional Groups: Alcohols, Ethers, Aldehydes, and Ketones
    4. Functional Groups: Carboxylic Acids, Esters, Amines, and Amides
    5. The Concept of Aromaticity
    6. The Concepts of Saturation and Unsaturation
  12. Complex Organic Molecules
    1. Carbohydrates: Sugars to Polysaccharides
    2. Carbohydrates: Cellulose and Glycogen
    3. Lipids: Fatty Acids and Waxes
    4. Lipids: Triacylglycerols to Glycerophospholipids
    5. Steroids
  13. Basic Biological Chemistry
    1. Amino Acids and Proteins
    2. Enzymes
    3. Nucleic Acids: DNA and RNA
    4. Protein Synthesis
    5. Metabolism and Energy Production
Fast, concise, great exercises. Goes fast, so need to do some extra research to fully understand. The sacrifice of concision for speed, though, was exactly what I needed.
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About the Author

Edward W. Pitzer