CHEM 162 A: General Chemistry

Summer 2023 Full-term
MTTh 8:30am - 9:30am / BAG 131
Section Type:
Syllabus Description (from Canvas):

Download a PDF of the Summarized Course Schedule (calendar only):

Download a PDF of the full Syllabus content shown below (includes calendar):

CHEMISTRY 162A (SLN 10636), SUMMER 2023


Lectures:  M, Tu, Th  8:30 –9:30AM in BAG 131

Course Website:   

Registration Questions: Chemistry Undergraduate Services |

Course & Lab Instructor: Prof. Andrea Carroll | BAG 201A| or direct message via Canvas Inbox

              Office Hours/Help Sessions: Mondays 10:30am-11:30am and Tuesdays 12:00pm-1:30pm

Teaching Assistants:     







Jakob Klein


Liam Wrigley


TA Help Sessions:  Details are TBD - will be posted on the course Canvas site. You may attend any TA help sessions!  The TAs can help you course content, ALEKS, labs, etc.


Except where indicated, all items are required and available through the University Bookstore:

  • Chemical Principles, 7th ed., Atkins/Jones/Laverman (e-book). You are welcome to use hard copies of 6th or 7th edition if you prefer – there are several options available by searching online.
  • UW General Chemistry 162 Laboratory Manual, Autumn 2022-Summer 2023 (Hayden McNeil).
  • Laboratory Notebook with numbered pages and carbonless duplicate pages. You may continue to use a notebook from a previous quarter if it meets the stated criteria and has at least 30 pages available.
  • Lab coat and safety goggles (NO safety glasses or any other type of goggles).
  • Scientific calculator. Graphing/text-entry calculators WILL NOT be permitted on exams.
  • ALEKS access. Purchase online: (see ALEKS info on the course website for more information). If your financial aid is delayed, contact your instructor for a temporary access code.

Internet and Instructional Technology:

  • Access to a computer or tablet. Student Technology Loan Program funded through Student Technology Fees
  • Internet access. Students in WA State without broadband internet service: visit WA State Drive-in wifi hotpsots.
  • Daily online access to Canvas ( and ALEKS. Weekly online access to Gradescope ( All necessary links are available on the course Canvas site.
  • Ability to convert a sheet of paper and/or file into a pdf. Submissions cannot be a group of individual image files. Free scanning apps are available for smartphones (such as Genius Scan and Scannable) – the Gradescope instructions page of the Labs site has more details for using these apps.


Students who successfully complete CHEM 162 will be able to

  • Explain the properties of chemical molecules using bonding models, including hybridization and molecular orbital theory, with the understanding of their limitations.
  • At a beginning level, analyze spectroscopic results to determine the structure of molecules.
  • Use isomerism (structural, geometric, and stereo) to explain variation in chemical and physical properties.
  • Explain macroscopic properties based on intermolecular forces within the chemical system.
  • Describe the structure and properties of the liquid and solid states, as well as phase changes, at the particulate and macroscopic levels.
  • Explain the chemical, physical, and thermodynamic properties of solutions at the particulate and macroscopic level.
  • Apply bonding models to the structural study of organic molecules and transition metal coordination complexes.
  • Illustrate the concepts of kinetics, thermodynamics, and equilibria through application to organic and transition metal chemistry.
  • Develop skill in visualizing the particulate level as related to the concepts above.
  • Relate empirical observations, particularly in the laboratory portion of the course, to concepts listed above.
  • Develop laboratory, data analysis, and scientific writing skills.


The course consists of:

  • 3 lectures per week
  • 1 discussion section per week
  • 1 three-hour laboratory session certain weeks of the quarter (6 labs total – see the 162 Laboratory Resources page of the course website for details.)
  • Daily work in the ALEKS online learning environment
  • Online prelab assignments and online submission of post-lab reports
  • Periodic quizzes and exams


The point distribution for the evaluative components of the course is as follows:





ALEKS (Modules & End-of-quarter Pie Progress)






Midterm Exams. The two midterm exams will be in person during the regularly-scheduled class session on Thursdays in weeks 4 and 7. Each exam will focus mainly on the most recent set of content covered in class, but chemistry is a cumulative subject by nature, so we will assume that you have a firm understanding of material from earlier in the quarter and from previous courses when we the quiz questions. The Midterm Exams represent 36% of your course grade (18% each).

Final Exam. The Final Exam will be in person during the last two class days of the quarter, Tu 8/15 & Th 8/17. The Final Exam is cumulative. I will provide details about the percentage by points of each course unit on the final towards the end of the quarter – it will be partially new material since Exam 2 and partially review material from the entire quarter. The Final Exam represents 27% of your course grade.

Participation. Discussion section (called Quiz section in the UW Time Schedule) will be weekly on Wednesdays. To earn your participation credit, you must arrive on time and participate in good faith during the Discussion Section, not simply be in attendance. One Discussion Section score will be dropped, allowing you to miss one without penalty. Additional participation-based activities will include the pre- and post-exam reflections and active reading assignments that are part of the “Catalyze Your Success” learning strategies initiative. These additional opportunities will not be “extra-credit” points, so please be sure to complete them when they are available. The Participation category represents 8% of your course grade.

ALEKS. Your ALEKS grade is constructed from your Modules scores and the percent of the Pie you complete by the end of the quarter. The more of the pie you complete, the higher your ALEKS score will be, but you do not have to complete the entire pie to earn credit for ALEKS. Similarly, you do not have to complete all the topics in a Module to earn credit for that Module. Whatever percentage of topics you complete by the due date will be your score for that Module. The Modules and Pie Mastery portions of your ALEKS grade are weighted equally. They each represent 7% of your overall course grade, so altogether the ALEKS category represents 14% of your course grade.

Laboratory. The Laboratory portion of this course will be conducted in person during the regularly-scheduled 3-hr lab sessions on your schedule. More details about lab can be found on the 162 Lab Canvas page. The lab score is made up of a lab safety orientation session and assignment and six labs (prelab, experiment, and report). The Laboratory category represents 15% of your course grade.

Grade. The final median GPA in Chemistry 162 generally falls within the range of 2.6-2.9. It is the Chemistry Department’s policy not to make grade changes of 0.1 after final class grades are submitted to the UW Registrar. Your scores for the various assignments, reports, and exams will be recorded using the online Gradebooks in Canvas ( The lab assignments will be recorded on the Chem 162 Lab Resources page and all of the course component scores from ALEKS, 162 Labs site in Canvas, and/or Gradescope will be migrated to the Chem 162 course gradebook periodically throughout the quarter.


Original work performed in good faith is assumed on all assignments and course components.

The Student Conduct Code prohibits several forms of academic misconduct (see section 7: Prohibited Conduct), including:

  • Cheating
  • Falsification
  • Plagiarism
  • Unauthorized collaboration
  • Engaging in behavior specifically prohibited by an instructor
  • Recording and/or dissemination of instructional content without express permission of the instructor

You are required to sign and submit an honor code statement for this course, in which you will affirm your acknowledgment of what constitutes academic misconduct in this course as defined below. Failure to adhere to this code of ethics will result in referral for possible disciplinary action as described in the Student Conduct Code. 

General policies for all course assignments

Your submissions for ALL assignments (including but not limited to homework assignments, lab reports, quizzes, and exams) should be your own individual work unless you are explicitly told otherwise by your instructor.

You are strictly prohibited from sharing any content from ANY assignment (including but not limited to homework assignments, lab reports, quizzes, and exams) with any website or app (including but not limited to Discord, Chegg, Course Hero, and Snapchat) or any other course content repository (virtual OR physical) that is not explicitly approved by the instructor. This prohibition applies both during the quarter that you are taking this course and any time after the course ends.

Specific policies for exams and quizzes

During exams and/or quizzes, you may not seek out or accept any input from ANY other individual, whether or not they are a classmate. Further, you may not provide assistance to other students during an exam or quiz unless an instructor explicitly allows for that collaboration.

Specific policies for lab reports

It is presumed that the data you record and report in laboratory is your work. All data analysis and written/typed calculations and responses that you submit should be yours alone, even if you collected data with a laboratory partner. We often find examples of plagiarism in which lab reports are copied from someone else, or from an earlier quarter and examples of improper collaboration in which lab reports or portions of lab reports are posted or shared for other people to view.

We understand that it can be difficult for students to discern what constitutes good-faith collegial support on lab reports, and what constitutes plagiarism or cheating. While we often find examples of explicit plagiarism in which lab reports are directly copied from a student in the current quarter or an earlier quarter,​ we also find many cases of students “over collaborating,” resulting in reports that are essentially identical or extremely similar with only minor edits made to achieve minimal differences between the reports. This does not meet our expectation that you are submitting your own independent work. In short, if you have not done something yourself, do not attempt to pass it off as original work. If you have questions about what might cross the line, please do not hesitate to ask your lab or class instructor prior to submitting your work. You will not get in trouble for asking this type of question!


Lecture Schedule. An approximate schedule for the chapters to be covered each week is at the end of this document. You are responsible for material covered in class AND in the textbook (whether or not it was covered in lecture). Lectures will cover only highlights of the textbook material.

Lecture and Discussion Section Etiquette. Out of respect for your classmates, please observe the following rules:

  • Arrive on time. If an emergency causes you to arrive late, please enter quietly through the rear doors of the lecture hall/classroom.
  • Do not pack up your belongings before the end of class.
  • Keep side conversations to a minimum.
  • Keep your phones and devices on silent, and refrain from sending or reading text messages.
  • Do not browse or read materials that are unrelated to the lecture.


Activities in Discussion Sections (“QZ” in the Time Schedule).  The weekly Discussion Section will be facilitated by your TA. The primary activities during Discussion Section will include:

  • TA fielding questions about quizzes, general course content, etc.
  • working with your colleagues on worksheet problems relevant to current course topics.

The worksheet problems are intended to help you synthesize the material covered in the previous week’s lectures, therefore, some will be quite challenging. A blank version of the worksheet will be available in advance of a particular Discussion Section. You can find them in the relevant Unit page in the Course Topics module. The worksheet key will be available after the last Discussion Section wraps up each week.  These problems will be graded on participation only.  To earn the available participation credit, you must arrive on time and participate in good faith during the Discussion Section, not simply be in attendance.


This course uses the internet-based learning program ALEKS (Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces). In ALEKS, you will complete learning objectives rather than traditional homework assignments. An ALEKS Module (formerly called an Objective) contains topics relevant to the class content and discussions. The ALEKS Pie is a visual indicator of your progress towards mastering the required course content. Both your % completion of Modules by the posted deadlines and the % completion of the ALEKS Pie by the end of the quarter will contribute to your total % score for the course and course grade.  Several resources for understanding ALEKS can be found in the ALEKS module on the course website.

  • Make sure that you register for the ALEKS course specific to your section of 162 – use only the registration code found on the course website.
  • Make sure you enter your UW Net ID (first part of your UW email address before the @ symbol) in your account details so your ALEKS scores can be correctly transferred to the course gradebook in Canvas.
  • You, alone, are responsible for monitoring the deadlines for all ALEKS Modules. Your daily/weekly work on ALEKS will be on your own schedule outside of class, although there are specific deadlines by which you must complete various Modules.
  • Note that it is not possible to open an ALEKS Module a few hours before it’s due and be able to complete it successfully while also retaining the information and skills for easy recall later.


There are two midterm exams and one final exam in this course. The dates for these exams are provided in the course schedule at the end of this document. Chemistry knowledge is cumulative so questions on exams will often depend on knowledge from earlier chapters and courses.

Exam Protocol

  • Bring a few pencils, your non-graphing, non-programmable scientific calculator, and a photo ID to all exams.
  • You must sit according to the seating charts that will be posted on the course website. 

Midterm Exams. These will be in person during the regularly-scheduled class session. Each exam will focus on the most recent class content, but chemistry is a cumulative subject by nature, so I will assume that you have a firm understanding of material from earlier in the quarter and from previous courses when I write the quiz questions. Information about exam length and coverage will be posted as each exam date nears.

Final Exam. The final exam will be in person during the last two regularly-scheduled class sessions for this course since Summer quarter does not have an official Finals Week. The final exam will be cumulative over the quarter. Information about length and coverage will be posted as the final exam dates near.


UW Chemistry is committed to a welcoming and inclusive classroom environment. Diverse backgrounds, embodiments, and experiences are essential to the critical thinking endeavor at the heart of university education. Therefore, I expect you to follow the UW Student Conduct Code in your interactions with your colleagues and me in this course by respecting the many social and cultural differences among us, which may include, but are not limited to: age, cultural background, disability, ethnicity, family status, gender identity and presentation, citizenship and immigration status, national origin, race, religious and political beliefs, sex, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, and veteran status. Please talk with me right away if you experience or observe disrespect in this class, and I will work to address it with you.


Your experience in this class is important to us, and it is the policy and practice of the University of Washington to create inclusive and accessible learning environments consistent with federal and state law. Disability Resources for Students (DRS) offers resources and coordinates reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities.  If you have not yet established services through DRS, but have a temporary or permanent disability that requires accommodations, you are welcome to contact DRS at 206-543-8924 or or visit If you have already established accommodations with DRS, the information for the Alternative Testing Contract will be submitted to DRS via their online system. Students with accommodations are solely responsible for scheduling the exams with DRS well in advance of the exam dates.  If you require accommodations in the laboratory (including assistants and/or interpreters), please contact the Undergraduate Services Director (Bagley 303D) in person in the first week of the quarter to discuss your accommodations. If you have accommodations related to lab report deadlines, follow the instructions on the Course Policies and Lab Info and Schedule pages of the Labs Canvas site PRIOR to your first lab for the quarter.


Washington state law requires that UW develop a policy for accommodation of student absences or significant hardship due to reasons of faith or conscience, or for organized religious activities. The UW’s policy, including more information about how to request an accommodation, is available at Religious Accommodations Policy ( ). Accommodations must be requested within the first two weeks of this course using the Religious Accommodations Request form ( ).


  1. Participate in ALL available sessions, pay close attention, and take notes – learning is not a passive process.
  2. Learning chemistry is a sequential process. You must understand today’s material before you can understand tomorrow's. As with all courses at UW, your instructors and TAs will assume that you are studying at least two hours for each hour of lecture and one hour for every hour of lab. Find a place that allows for periods of uninterrupted study. Skim through chapter or sections to be covered in the next class session.
  3. Make daily, weekly, and quarterly learning plans and follow those plans.
  4. Working in shorter, more frequent sessions in ALEKS will be more efficient than long, marathon sessions.
  5. Practice! Work on suggested end-of-the-chapter problems as well as topics in ALEKS - focus on understanding the concepts and general processes, not just memorizing how to solve a specific problem.
  6. Talk chemistry with fellow Chem 162 students. You will not only learn more, but you will probably also enjoy the course more.
Catalog Description:
Molecular bonding theories, liquids, solids, solutions, and introduction to organic and transition metal chemistry. Includes laboratory. Cannot be taken for credit if credit received for CHEM 165. Prerequisite: minimum grade of 1.7 in CHEM 152. Offered: AWSpS.
GE Requirements Met:
Natural Sciences (NSc)
Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning (QSR)
Last updated:
July 17, 2024 - 8:45 pm