Chemistry

Professors: Arias-Rotondo, Bartz (Chair), Furchak, Furge, Stevens-Truss, Tresca, Williams

The chemistry program is an American Chemical Society (ACS) approved pre-professional undergraduate program that stresses the art of scientific thought and the role of chemistry in society. Chemistry students benefit from a close working relationship with faculty members in an atmosphere that encourages research. Majors can gain preparation suitable for graduate study in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical and materials engineering, environmental sciences, pharmacology, medicinal chemistry, clinical chemistry, or molecular biology. Other professional opportunities open to chemistry graduates include: medical, dental, or veterinary schools; business administration; patent or environmental law. Majors will also have a background appropriate for becoming a professional research or process chemist in industrial, pharmaceutical, or government laboratories; teaching high school or community college chemistry; doing environmental monitoring or remediation; working in sales, product development, or in laboratory safety; becoming a writer on science topics, working in science libraries or other information services, doing conservation work in art museums; or performing forensic analyses for law enforcement agencies.

Requirements for the Major in Chemistry

Number of Units
A minimum of eight units from credited courses (excluding the SIP and courses designed for non-chemistry majors) plus 0.7 units of Chem Senior Seminar (Chem 490).

Advanced Placement
With a chemistry advanced placement (AP) score of 4 or 5 or IB score of 5, 6, or 7, one unit of credit will be awarded towards the minimum of eight units required for the major in chemistry provided a student begins the chemistry sequence at CHEM 120 or higher.

Required Courses
CHEM 110: Chemical Composition and Structure with Lab (exempted if student begins in CHEM 120)
CHEM 120: Chemical Reactivity with Lab
CHEM 210: Organic Chemistry I with Lab
CHEM 220: Organic Chemistry II with Lab
CHEM 240: Analytical Chemistry with Lab
CHEM 310: Chemical Thermodynamics and Kinetics with Lab
CHEM 490: Senior Seminar - Professional Development for Chemists (minimum of 0.7
units required)
Plus two additional 300- or 400- level credited courses with lab

Required Cognates
MATH 112: Calculus I (or its equivalent, MATH 110/111)
MATH 113: Calculus II (additional work in mathematics is encouraged)
PHYS 150: Introductory Physics I with Lab
PHYS 152: Introductory Physics II with Lab

In accordance with College policy, chemistry majors must pass the eight units of chemistry and the mathematics and physics cognates with a grade of C- or better.

In addition to obtaining a degree from an ACS-approved program, students can opt to pursue an ACS-certified degree. A certified degree is a valuable personal credential that serves as National-level recognition of successful completion of a rigorous academic chemistry curriculum. A certified major includes CHEM 210, 240, 310, 352, 430, a chemistry research-based SIP, and three additional chemistry courses above the100-level (excluding CHEM 200). In addition MATH 112 and 113 and PHYS 150 and 152 are required and Math 214 and 240 are recommended. The certification curriculum, which provides thorough preparation in chemistry, mathematics, and physics, is recommended for students contemplating graduate study in chemistry.

All students enrolling in the beginning Chemistry courses (CHEM 110, 120) must complete the placement examination prior to enrolling in either of these courses. Results from the placement examination may permit exemption for one or both beginning courses (with exemption from CHEM 120 also requiring proof of extensive laboratory preparation). Students entering Kalamazoo College with Advanced Placement (AP) scores of 4 or 5, or IB scores of 5, 6, or 7, or who successfully pass the Chemistry placement examination are automatically exempt from CHEM 110.

3/2 Pre-Engineering in Chemical Engineering
Students intending to follow the 3/2 Pre-Engineering Program in chemical engineering should follow the course sequence for the chemistry major through the third year and meet the requirements for admission to chemical engineering schools after the third year. Each student pursuing this program must successfully complete the following courses while in residence at Kalamazoo College: CHEM 110, 120, 210, 220, 240, 310; MATH 112, 113, 214, 240, 280; PHYS 150, 152, 220.

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Concentration
Students interested in graduate studies of molecular-level biological phenomena are especially encouraged to consider this plan of study. Refer to the full catalog program description page.

Chemistry courses

CHEM110Chemical Composition and Structure with Lab Fundamental principles of chemistry: chemical calculations and symbolism; atomic and molecular structure and bonding; periodic properties; intermolecular interactions, classification of chemical reactions, and the solid state. Laboratory work includes introduction to chemical instrumentation.
CHEM120Chemical Reactivity with Lab Classification of chemical reactions; chemical kinetics; chemical equilibrium; energetics of chemical reactions (thermodynamics); acid-base, solubility-precipitation, oxidation-reduction, complexation reactions; electrochemistry; descriptive chemistry of selected elements. Laboratory work includes use of chemical instrumentation.Prerequisite: CHEM-110 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM200Research Apprenticeship in Chemistry Students who anticipate majoring in chemistry may participate in apprenticeships, which are intended to provide opportunities for the students to become involved in ongoing research projects with chemistry faculty. To be considered for a research apprenticeship position, a student must approach a faculty member regarding joining the faculty member's research laboratory. A minimum of 50 hours of work is expected. A student may enroll in CHEM200 for no more than 3 quarters, with the same faculty member or with different faculty members. The three quarter need not be consecutive. Enrollment is by permission of the instructor only, availability of apprenticeships will vary over time, and are not guaranteed. This course does not count towards major.
CHEM210Organic Chemistry I Basic principles of structure, nomenclature, and reactivity applied to aliphatic hydrocarbons; valence bond and molecular orbital structure models; inductive, resonance, and steric effects on reactivity; stereoisomerism; laboratory emphasis on techniques used in the synthesis and purification of organic compounds.Prerequisite: CHEM-120 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM210LOrganic Chemistry I Lab
CHEM220Organic Chemistry II W/ Lab Continuation of CHEM 210 that includes classroom and laboratory study of the structure, nomenclature, chemical properties, and spectrometric identification of common organic compounds; emphasis on reaction mechanisms and organic synthesis. Intended for research-oriented natural science students with career interests in chemistry, chemical engineering, or biochemistry and related fields.Prerequisite: CHEM-210 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM240Analytical Chemistry with Lab Treatment of experimental data; systematic solution stoichiometry; the study of acid-base, precipitation-solubility, oxidation-reduction, and complex formation-dissociation equilibria; introduction to quantitative applications of gravimetry, titrimetry, and chromatography, electrochemistry, and spectrophotometry.Prerequisite: CHEM-120 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM298Independent Study Chemistry Independent Study
CHEM310Physical Chemistry I Study of chemical thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and kinetics. Intended for chemistry majors and biologists with a strong cellular or molecular orientation.Prerequisite: CHEM-120, MATH 113, and PHYS-152 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM310Chemical Thermodynamics & Kinetics W/Lab Study of chemical thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and kinetics. Intended for chemistry majors and biologists with a strong cellular or molecular orientation.Prerequisite: CHEM-120 or CHEM-125, MATH 113, and PHYS-152 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM310LPhysical Chemistry I Lab Study of chemical thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and kinetics. Intended for chemistry majors and biologists with a strong cellular or molecular orientation.Prerequisite: CHEM-120 or CHEM-125, MATH 113, and PHYS-152 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-. CHEM-310 may be taken concurrently
CHEM/BIOL352Biochemistry Overview of the chemical mechanisms underlying biological processes including structure and function of proteins, polysaccharides, and lipids; enzymatic catalysis and kinetics; an introduction to bioenergetics; detailed treatment of carbohydrate metabolism; survey of lipid and amino acid metabolism; and integration of metabolism. Prerequisite: CHEM-220. All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.Prerequisite: CHEM-220; open to Chemistry majors only. All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM/BIOL352LBiochemistry Lab Overview of basic biochemical laboratory techniques with emphasis on protein isolation and characterization, enzyme kinetics, and bioinformatics. Students will devise and execute independent research projects as part of the course final project. Laboratory and scientific writing, oral communication, and preparation of quality figures and tables will also be emphasized. Prerequisites: CHEM-220 and CHEM/BIOL352 (can be taking concurrently). All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.Prerequisite: CHEM-220, Minimum grade C- CHEM/BIOL-352 must be taken previously or concurrently
CHEM410Quantum Chemistry & Spectroscopy Further study of chemical kinetics; elementary quantum mechanics applied to simple atoms and molecules; spectroscopy.Prerequisite: CHEM-120, MATH-113, and PHYS-152 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM420Instrumental Analysis with Lab Study of instrumental methods of analysis including trace techniques; emphasis on spectroscopy, electrochemistry, and chromatography, introduction to electronic signal processing, and computer data acquisition.Prerequisite: CHEM-310 or Chemistry Seniors who have taken CHEM-240. All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-. Chemistry seniors who have not taken CHEM-310 should contact the Registrar's Office in order to register for this class.
CHEM430Inorganic Chemistry with Lab Exploration of the properties of the elements and their compounds except for hydrocarbons and their organic derivatives; emphasis on structures, bonding, and reactivities of main-group, transition-metal, and organometallic compounds; laboratory work emphasizing synthesis, analysis and reactivity characterization of inorganic compounds.Prerequisite: CHEM-310 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM440Intro to Drug & Natural Product Synthesi Study of local and reaction stereochemistry, conformational analysis, and molecular orbital theory; preparative methods for asymmetric chemicals; applications of chiral transition metal complexes in catalyzed organic reactions; laboratory work emphasizing chromatographic techniques and 1D and 2D NMR analysis.Prerequisite: CHEM-220 and CHEM-310 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM450Molecular Structure and Reactivity with Lab An advanced course dealing with molecular symmetry and group theory applied to the description of molecular structure and bonding in inorganic, organic, organometallic, and solid-state systems; molecular and electronic structure determination by spectroscopy, magnetism, and X-ray crystallography; examination of selected chemical reactions with focus on transition metal and metalloprotein redox and energy generation; laboratory work emphasizing synthesis and reactivity studies on and physical characterization of inorganic, organic, and organometallic compounds.
CHEM460Advanced Biochemistry Study of selected topics in biochemistry through review articles and primary research literature, emphasizing experimental methods, critical analysis and interpretation of data, and integration of biochemical concepts. Laboratory will utilize an investigative approach to strategies of enzyme studies and bioinformatics.Prerequisite: BIOL/CHEM 352 and BIOL/CHEM-352L All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.
CHEM470Principles of Medicinal Chemistry with Lab This course will survey the world of medicinal drug design, from target choice to structural drug determinants, to drug toxicology and disposition. The course will illustrate to students the significance of chemical structure and their physiochemical properties, and address molecular modification of molecules in the rational design of drug entities. The ultimate goal is to help students relate drug chemistry to therapeutic applications. We will review some general principles learned in Introductory and Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry, and Cell Biology, and will introduce several Pharmacological and Physiological principles, as they relate to the molecular mechanism of action of select drug classes. Emphasis will be placed on drug-target interactions at the molecular level by employing 3-D visualization tools.Prerequisite: CHEM-220 and BIOL/CHEM-352 All course prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-. Senior Chemistry majors only
CHEM490FSenior Seminar - Professional Development for Chemists Professional Development for Chemists - combines activities currently in the Chemistry senior program and two practicum experiences with the goal of preparing senior majors to present a public seminar covering their Senior Individualized Project and to present themselves professionally as they move into chosen professions. The Chemistry discipline relies heavily on both written and verbal communication skills to disseminate scientific information, and as such, practitioners must be able to articulate concise and scientifically accurate descriptions of their work. This course (distributed across the three academic quarters) utilizes a series of seminars by guest chemistry professionals, on-campus resources, practical applications, and peer workshops to develop oral and written presentation skills. CHEM490F (0.4 units) and CHEM490W (0.3 units) Prerequisite: Chemistry Senior standing CHEM490S (0.3) - taken in spring of junior year as a preparative course for the SIP. Can be taken again in spring of senior year. Students majoring in Chemistry must complete a minimum of 0.7 units of CHEM490. Students wanting to use CHEM490 as their Graduation Shared Passages Seminar requirement must complete 1.0 units of CHEM490.Prerequisite: Senior Chemistry majors only
CHEM490SSenior Seminar - Professional Development for Chemists Professional Development for Chemists - combines activities currently in the Chemistry senior program and two practicum experiences with the goal of preparing senior majors to present a public seminar covering their Senior Individualized Project and to present themselves professionally as they move into chosen professions. The Chemistry discipline relies heavily on both written and verbal communication skills to disseminate scientific information, and as such, practitioners must be able to articulate concise and scientifically accurate descriptions of their work. This course (distributed across the three academic quarters) utilizes a series of seminars by guest chemistry professionals, on-campus resources, practical applications, and peer workshops to develop oral and written presentation skills. CHEM490F (0.4 units) and CHEM490W (0.3 units) Prerequisite: Chemistry Senior standing CHEM490S (0.3) - taken in spring of junior year as a preparative course for the SIP. Can be taken again in spring of senior year. Students majoring in Chemistry must complete a minimum of 0.7 units of CHEM490. Students wanting to use CHEM490 as their Graduation Shared Passages Seminar requirement must complete 1.0 units of CHEM490.Prerequisite: Junior or Senior Standing only.
CHEM490WSenior Seminar - Professional Development for Chemists Professional Development for Chemists - combines activities currently in the Chemistry senior program and two practicum experiences with the goal of preparing senior majors to present a public seminar covering their Senior Individualized Project and to present themselves professionally as they move into chosen professions. The Chemistry discipline relies heavily on both written and verbal communication skills to disseminate scientific information, and as such, practitioners must be able to articulate concise and scientifically accurate descriptions of their work. This course (distributed across the three academic quarters) utilizes a series of seminars by guest chemistry professionals, on-campus resources, practical applications, and peer workshops to develop oral and written presentation skills. CHEM490F (0.4 units) and CHEM490W (0.3 units) Prerequisite: Chemistry Senior standing CHEM490S (0.3) - taken in spring of junior year as a preparative course for the SIP. Can be taken again in spring of senior year. Students majoring in Chemistry must complete a minimum of 0.7 units of CHEM490. Students wanting to use CHEM490 as their Graduation Shared Passages Seminar requirement must complete 1.0 units of CHEM490.Prerequisite: Senior Chemistry majors only
CHEM593Senior Individualized Project Each program or department sets its own requirements for Senior Individualized Projects done in that department, including the range of acceptable projects, the required background of students doing projects, the format of the SIP, and the expected scope and depth of projects. See the Kalamazoo Curriculum -> Senior Individualized Project section of the Academic Catalog for more details.Prerequisite: Permission of department and SIP supervisor required.
This Academic Catalog is current as of Nov 30, 2020

An official catalog is produced each summer for the following academic year and stored in the Archives section of this site. These versions are used for degree audits. Throughout the year, approved changes are incorporated immediately. Updates that have been submitted and approved by early summer will be included in the archival catalog for the next academic year in mid-summer.