AP Chemistry (also offered as Dual Enrollment with NOVA) is the equivalent of a first-year college chemistry course. The academic objectives for this course comply with this level. The course is designed for college-bound students who either would like to earn college credit with NOVA or by AP examination, or would like to prepare for college chemistry while in high school. This is accomplished through an intensive, in-depth approach. The class will consist of three major components – lecture, problem-solving and laboratory work.
This course will be rigorous and challenging. The students are taught to develop their analytical thinking skills. This course requires continual study, good note taking skills, extensive time and effort, and excellent math ability and skills.
The lecture is strongly oriented towards fundamental concepts and problem solving, while the laboratory provides practical demonstrations of the analytical method. The lectures will be accompanied by homework assignments (handouts and problems at the end of each chapter in the textbook), reading (with student generated outlines of chapters) and solving problems. It is important that you keep up with all types of assignments. Advance Placement courses (and Dual Enrollment) generally have more homework and increased study time. The general guideline is that the student will spend on average an hour (or more) a night on chemistry. The chapters in the textbook should be read to get a thorough understanding of each topic. Students will be expected to create their own outline of each chapter to supplement their learning – a good technique for any college level science course. Chapter outlines are due on test days. Outlines not submitted on the due date will be marked exempt in the grade book.
A detailed syllabus will be given to students on the first day of class. The following chemical concepts will be covered:
- Measurement: SI units, Accuracy and precision, Scientific notation, Significant figures, Dimensional analysis
- Atomic structure: Subatomic particles, Electron configurations, Periodic relationships of the elements
- Nomenclature and formula writing
- Stoichiometry: Mole concept, Writing balanced chemical equations, Calculations based on balanced equations
- Thermochemistry: Hess's Law, Heats of reactions, Bond energies, Calorimetry
- Chemical Bonding: Ionic Bonding, Polar and nonpolar covalent bonding, Metallic bonding, Lewis structures and VSEPR, Valence bond theory including hybrid orbitals, Molecular orbital theory
- Gases: Kinetic molecular theory of gases, Gas Laws, Calculations based on gas laws, Ideal and real gases
- Liquid and solid states: Properties of liquids - Intermolecular forces, vapor pressure, boiling point, surface tension, viscosity, capillary action, Properties of solids - molecular substances, metals, ionic substances, network atomic solids, and Phase diagrams
- Solutions: Concentration units, Principles of solubility, Colligative properties of electrolytes and non-electrolytes
- Kinetics: Rate laws, Reaction mechanisms, Activation energy, Catalysis
- Chemical Equilibria: Le Châtelier’s principle, Gaseous equilibria, Acid-base equilibria pH of acids, bases and salt solutions, buffers, titration curves, Solubility equilibria
- Thermodynamics: Entropy, Free energy, Spontaneity
- Electrochemistry: Balancing redox equations, Standard cell potentials, Voltaic cells, Electrochemical cells, Nernst equation