Course Exam—CHEM 217

CHEM 217 (Chemical Principles I) is a three-credit introductory chemistry course that provides an introduction to chemistry from both a theoretical and practical point of view.  The combination of CHEM 217 and CHEM 218 (Chemical Principles II) is the equivalent to first-year university chemistry.  CHEM 217 has no prerequisites, however, chemistry 30 of an equivalent high school chemistry course is strongly recommended but not required.  This course is open only to students with previous chemistry experience.  This course is not available for challenge and students should be aware that CHEM 217 may not be taken for credit if credit has already been obtained for CHEM 209.

Chemical Principles I covers nomenclature, the mole concept, and stoichiometry; thermochemistry; atomic and molecular structure; periodic relationships; the gas laws; and the properties of solids, liquids, and solutions.  Students will have to complete some assignments that weigh a total of twenty percent, do some laboratory work that weighs twenty percent, and must write a midterm and final examination worth twenty percent and forty percent respectively.  To receive credit for CHEM 217, students much complete all of the course work and achieve at least a “D” or fifty percent on each of the two examinations, and an overall course composite grade of at least fifty percent in the course.

This course also requires students to complete 32 hours of laboratory work, using a home-study laboratory kit, to obtain credit in this course.  Students can order the laboratory kit online.  It is strongly recommended that you complete units one and two before attempting any laboratory work.  Note that the laboratory component accounts for 20% of your overall course mark.  Students must satisfactorily complete and write up a specified minimum number of experiments in order to obtain credit for this course.

To help you complete this course, students should purchase an electronic calculator capable of handling logarithms and exponentials.  Students are able to take their calculators to both the midterm and final examinations and can be used in laboratory sessions.  Other items to consider purchasing are stationery, including paper for assignments, pens, pencils, a ruler, etc.

Heather Fox is enrolled in the Bachelor of Science in Human Sciences program at Athabasca University and she hopes to be finished in just over a year.  She provides us with an introduction, stating “My name is Heather and I am a stay at home mom in Calgary, Alberta to twin toddlers and a teenager.  I work from home running a successful Etsy shop, and also volunteer on the side for our local twin association.”

When asked to explain CHEM 217 to students, she states that “This is a basic introduction to chemistry course that deals with learning stoichiometry, thermochemistry and mole laws.  The textbook was digital but laid out well and easy to follow.  It covered the course material appropriately and offered a lot of practice problems to help prepare for the exam.”

As for the structure of the course, she explains that there “were four assignments, a midterm and a final examination, plus laboratory reports.  The assignments were sample questions that applied the knowledge in the course and I found they helped prepare for the exams.  The laboratory reports varied per lab, some with simple write ups and some that required more in-depth responses.  The labs were home based, a kit is sent to your house and you do them on your own time with the chemicals provided, as well as the addition of basic things from home.  They were very detailed and easy to follow.  The exams were reflective of the material and there were practice exams to use to prepare.  I felt there was enough practice material provide to prepare you for the exams.”

Heather would recommend CHEM 217 to other students, stating that she “found the majority of the course quite easy and the format was easy to follow.” She had “No complaints at all.”

As for any tips or tricks to completing this course, Heather states to “Practice, practice, practice!  I recommend doing all of the practice questions at the end of each chapter, and review the practice midterm and final when preparing for the exam.”

When asked what her experience was like communicating with her tutors, she states “I didn’t have any issues with the tutor, exams and assignments were marked quickly and they were always quick to reply to emails.”

Whether CHEM 217 is a degree or program requirement of yours, or the content discussed above is of interest to you, this course will have you learning a lot of interesting material surrounding chemical principles.

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