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CHEM 1523: Principles of Chemistry

This course is the second half of first year chemistry theory designed for students with a strong background in Chemistry. Course topics include gas laws, equilibrium, redox reactions, electrochemistry, thermochemistry, entropy and free energy.

NOTE: This course provides the equivalent of the second half of a first-year university chemistry course when taken with its accompanying laboratory course, CHEM 1525. In order to complete the equivalent of the entire first year (6 credits) of university-level chemistry students need to complete CHEM 1503, 1523, 1505 and 1525 or CHEM 1500 and CHEM 1520.

NOTE: You may be required to take CHEM 1525 the lab component in order to receive transfer credit.

Learning outcomes

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

  • Describe the properties of gases and do gas law calculations.
  • Calculate order, rates, half-life, and reaction rate constants from kinetic data
  • Explain the equilibrium state and the effects of an applied stress on an equilibrium.
  • Do a variety of gaseos and ionic solution/solid equilibrium calculations.
  • Explain the concepts involved in the theory of acids and bases.
  • Calculate the pH of solutions of acids, bases, salts, buffers, and polyprotic acids.
  • Do thermodynamic calculations.
  • Explain the concept of entropy and its contribution to spontaneity in Gibbs free energy.
  • Balance redox equations.
  • Describe electrolytic cells and do calculations involving Faraday's Laws.
  • Calculate standard and non-standard cell emf's from standard reduction potentials.

Course topics

  • Unit 1: Gases
  • Unit 2: Kinetics
  • Unit 3: Equilibrium
  • Unit 4: Acids and Bases
  • Unit 5: Thermodynamics
  • Unit 6: Electrochemistry

Required text and materials

The following textbook would have been purchased in CHEM 1503. Students who did not take CHEM 1503 and/or don't already own the required textbook, will need to purchase it. To do so, please contact Enrolment Services at or 1.800.663.9711 (toll-free in Canada), 250.852.7000 (Kamloops, BC), and 1.250.852.7000 (International).

  1. Chang, R., & Overby, J., (2018). Chemistry (13th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill
    Type: Textbook: ISBN: 978-1-260-08531-0

Additional requirements

Computer with Internet is required. 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 optional book:

  1. Chang, R., & Overby, J., (2018). Student solutions mannual for Chemisty (13th ed.). New York:McGraw-Hill
    Type: Textbook: ISBN: 1-26-016232X


Please be aware that should your course have a final exam, you are responsible for the fee to the online proctoring service, ProctorU, or to the in-person approved Testing Centre. Please contact with any questions about this.

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 exam.

Note: The final exam for this course is only available as a paper exam and must be taken in person at an approved Testing Centre. Please email with any questions.

Assignment 1 8%
Assignment 2 8%
Assignment 3 8%
Assignment 4 8%
Assignment 5 9%
Assignment 6 9%
Final Exam (mandatory) 50%

Open Learning Faculty Member Information

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

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