CHEM 1503: Chemical Bonding and Organic Chemistry

This course is the first half of a fundamental first year chemistry course. Topics include general concepts of chemical bonding, Lewis structures, molecular shape, and valence bond theory of bonding. The organic chemistry portion of the course focuses on the bonding and structure of organic compounds, compound naming, functional groups, conformational and stereo chemical features, oxidation reduction reactions, substitution and elimination reactions, and enolate chemistry.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  • Name simple inorganic compounds.
  • Use S.I. units, significant figures, and scientific notation correctly.
  • Do stoichiometric calculations (chemical arithmetic) involving chemical reactions.
  • Explain the historical development of the quantum theory of atomic structure.
  • Describe periodic properties of elements in relation to their electron configuration.
  • Explain theories of bonding and describe geometric shapes and polarities of molecules.
  • Describe the different intermolecular forces present between molecules and use them to predict physical properties such as melting points.
  • Describe the structure, nomenclature, properties, and reactions of some organic compounds, such as alkanes, cycloalkanes, alkenes, haloalkenes, and alcohols.
  • Identify constitutional isomers, conformational isomers, stereoisomers, chiral molecules and stereogenic carbons.
  • Explain, using reaction mechanisms, the important features of the free radical halogenations, SN1, and SN2 reactions.

Course topics

  • Unit 1: Measurement and Matter
  • Unit 2: Atoms
  • Unit 3: Molecules
  • Unit 4: Intramolecular Forces and Organic Chemistry
  • Unit 5: Stereochemistry
  • Unit 6: Mechanisms of Organic Reactions

Required text and materials

Students will receive all course materials including the textbook in their course package.

  • Chang, R. & Overby, J (2019). Chemistry with connect 2-semester access Card (13th ed). New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc.
    Type: Textbook, ISBN: 978-1-260-19230-8

  • Vollhardt, K. and Schore, N. (2018). Organic chemistry structure and function (8e.) New York: W.H. Freeman.
    Type: Loose-leaf Textbook, ISBN-13: 978-1-319-176976

  • Prentice Hall. The Prentice Hall molecular model set for organic chemistry. England: Prentice-Hall, 1991.
    Type: Model Set

Additional requirements

Non-programmable, single numeric line calculator such as the Casio fx-260 is required.

Optional materials

Solutions to most of the supplementary exercises suggested in the Course Units are provided in the following manuals. These are not provided in your course materials, but you may purchase them on your own if you wish.

  • Chang, R. , and Overby, J. (2019). Chemistry solutions manual, student edition. (13th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.
    ISBN-13: 978-1-260-16232-5
    Type: E-Book
  • Schore, Neil (2018), Study guide and solutions manual for organic chemistry structure and function. (8th ed.). New York: Freeman.
    ISBN-13: 978-1319195748
    Type: Textbook


Please be aware that due to COVID-19 safety guidelines all in-person exams have been suspended. As such, all final exams are currently being delivered through ProctorU, which has an approximate fee of $35 involved. There will be more information in your course shell, on how to apply, if your course has a final exam.

To successfully complete this course, students must achieve a passing grade of 50% or higher on the overall course, and 50% or higher on the final mandatory examination.

Assignment 1 8%
Assignment 2 8%
Assignment 3 8%
Assignment 4 10%
Assignment 5 8%
Assignment 6 8%
Final Exam * 50%
Total 100%

* Mandatory

Open Learning Faculty Member

An Open Learning Faculty Member is available to assist students. Students will receive the necessary contact information at the start of your course.

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