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Department of Chemistry

Chair

David W. C. MacMillan

Associate Chair

Martin F. Semmelhack

Departmental Representative

Robert P. L'Esperance

Director of Graduate Studies

Haw Yang

Professor

Steven L. Bernasek

Andrew B. Bocarsly

Roberto Car

Robert J. Cava

Garnet Kin-Lic Chan

Paul J. Chirik

John T. Groves

Michael H. Hecht

David W. C. MacMillan

Thomas W. Muir

Joshua D. Rabinowitz, also Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics

Herschel A. Rabitz

Clarence E. Schutt

Jeffrey Schwartz

Annabella Selloni

Martin F. Semmelhack

Zoltán G. Soos

Erik J. Sorensen

Salvatore Torquato

Associate Professor

Jannette L. Carey

Haw Yang

Assistant Professor

Abigail G. Doyle

Dorothea Fiedler

Robert R. Knowles

Lecturer

Henry L. Gingrich

Michael T. Kelly

Anne M. Morel-Kraepiel

Robert P. L'Esperance

István Pelczer

Paul J. Reider

Susan K. VanderKam

Chia-Ying Wang

Associated Faculty

Bonnie L. Bassler, Molecular Biology

Emily A. Carter, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Applied and Computational Mathematics

Benjamin A. Garcia, Molecular Biology

Frederick M. Hughson, Molecular Biology

Bruce E. Koel, Chemical and Biological Engineering

Manuel Llinás, Molecular Biology, Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics

Michael C. McAlpine, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

François Morel, Geosciences

Satish C. B. Myneni, Geosciences

Jeffry B. Stock, Molecular Biology


Information and Departmental Plan of Study

The Department of Chemistry offers a flexible program suitable for those who plan to attend graduate school, as well as for premedical students or those intending to pursue a career in secondary school teaching. A chemistry concentration is appropriate for anyone who desires a broad background of undergraduate training in science.

Advanced Placement

A student who received an Advanced Placement Examination score of 4 qualifies for one unit of advanced placement and is eligible to take CHM 202 General Chemistry II. A student who received an Advanced Placement Examination score of 5 qualifies for two units of advanced placement and is eligible to take CHM 301 or 303. One term of advanced placement satisfies the B.S.E. chemistry requirement.

A departmental placement examination is given during Freshman Orientation Week for students who did not have an opportunity to take the Chemistry Advanced Placement Exam.

Prerequisites

Before entering the department, students are expected to complete:

1. one year of general chemistry: CHM 201/203/207 and 202/204, or one unit of advanced placement in chemistry and CHM 202, or the equivalent (such as two units of advanced placement in chemistry)

2. differential and integral calculus: MAT 103 and 104, or the equivalent advanced placement

3. one year of general physics: PHY 101 and 102, or 103 and 104, or 105 and 106, or equivalent credit

Prerequisite courses may not be taken using the P/D/F grading option.

The sophomore program of prospective chemistry concentrators should include one year of organic chemistry (CHM 301 and 302 or 303 and 304/304B). Note: Also see Integrated Science sequence below.

Early Concentration

A student who has been granted advanced placement credit in chemistry and has taken advanced courses in the subject during both terms of freshman year may be eligible for independent work in the sophomore year. Students interested in this option should contact the departmental representative in the spring of their freshman year.

Program of Study

University regulations require that, before graduation, students take eight courses, designated as departmental courses in their field of concentration. A chemistry concentrator may, with the approval of the departmental representative, use one or more non-introductory courses from other science departments, mathematics, and engineering as departmental courses.

Chemistry concentrators typically take more than eight courses that qualify as departmental.

Core Courses. Students must take three 300-, 400-, or 500-numbered courses in chemistry and at least one term of experimental laboratory instruction at Princeton as departmental core courses. These courses must include at least one term each of organic, physical, and inorganic chemistry. The experimental requirement may be fulfilled by taking either CHM 371, or MOL 350, or MSE 302, or PHY 311 or 312, or CHE 346, or QCB 301. Note: The experimental course must be completed by the end of the junior year.

Cognates. The remaining four departmental courses of the eight required by the University degree regulations can be in either chemistry or a cognate scientific area (e.g., molecular biology, engineering, geology, materials science, computer science, mathematics, or physics). Many courses in the sciences at the 300, 400, and 500 levels are approved as departmental courses. Courses are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. To qualify as a departmental, the course must have one or more prerequisites (i.e., be non-introductory) and must have a strong chemistry component.

Physics/Mathematics. An understanding of chemistry requires a thorough background in physics and mathematics. Students majoring in chemistry should obtain a broad background in these subjects. In general, it is desirable to take courses in mathematics at least through multivariable calculus (MAT 201 or 203) and linear algebra (MAT 202 or 204). These courses may be counted as departmental courses. These mathematics courses are also required for professional certification. (See "Professional Certification in Chemistry," below.)

The program described above deliberately allows substantial flexibility and encourages a broad view of chemistry.

Independent Work

Junior Independent Work.

First-term program:

1. The Junior Colloquium: One evening each week throughout the fall term talks will be given by faculty members on topics not normally included in coursework. Junior chemistry concentrators and early concentrators are required to attend these sessions.

2. Juniors will be assigned to one of several reading groups. Over the course of the semester, every group will meet with three separate instructors, one for each of three four-week reading periods. Instructors will discuss current literature topics with the groups. At the end of each reading period, students will submit a critical analysis of a research article.

Reading group advisers are selected by the Junior Colloquia chairperson to give the student a broad sampling of faculty interests. The student's final term grade is calculated by the departmental representative using the grades on the three papers plus the individual's record of attendance at the evening colloquia.

Second-term program:

Each student will select a faculty adviser for spring independent work by the start of the spring semester. The student will meet regularly with the faculty adviser during the semester. At the end of the term, the student will submit a research proposal for the senior thesis. The student will summarize any preliminary experimental results. A student's final term grade is determined by the departmental representative in conjunction with the faculty adviser's evaluation. 

Senior Independent Work. At the end of the junior year, each student selects a thesis adviser (who may or may not be the same as the adviser during the junior year). The adviser and the student will agree on a topic on which the student will undertake independent original research throughout both terms of the senior year. This project will consist largely of original research involving wet laboratory work and/or chemical theory. On or before Dean's Date, a written thesis based on this research work must be submitted to the department. The thesis will be evaluated and ranked by a committee of eight professors, two each from the following four areas of study: inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, physical chemistry, and biochemistry. 

Grading note: The grades for the junior and senior independent work will comply with the University's grading guidelines.

Senior Departmental Examination

In May of the senior year, the department administers examinations produced by the American Chemical Society in order to fulfill University degree requirements. These examinations cover the fields of biochemistry and inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry. Preparation for these exams involves the following: (1) The biochemistry exam covers material presented in MOL 345. (2) The inorganic chemistry exam encompasses material from both CHM 407 and 408. (3) The organic chemistry exam spans a full year of coursework from either CHM 301/302 or CHM 303/304. (4) The physical chemistry exam includes material from both quantum chemistry (CHM 305 or 405) and thermodynamics (CHM 306 or 406). Seniors preselect and complete two of the four examinations for this requirement.

Study Abroad

The department encourages students to consider opportunities for study abroad. Requirements for the junior independent work program are then met at the foreign host institution. In addition, the student may elect to have the number of required departmental courses reduced by one cognate per semester abroad, assuming advanced approval of a chemistry-related course of study at the foreign institution. (This course may not be counted as one of the four required core courses.) Students considering study abroad are urged to discuss their plans with the departmental representative early in the planning stages to lay out coursework, obtain approvals, and set up junior independent work assignments.

Integrated Science Sequence

Completion of the ISC/CHM/COS/MOL/PHY 231, 232, 233, 234 series fulfills the general chemistry and physics prerequisites. For full course descriptions and more information, see the Integrated Science website.

Professional Certification in Chemistry. As specified by the American Chemical Society. Students intending to pursue a career in chemistry, whether directly after graduation or following a graduate program, may wish to pursue a course of study leading to professional certification by the American Chemical Society. This certification requires two semesters of organic chemistry (one each of CHM 301 and 302, or 303 and 304, or equivalent), two semesters of physical chemistry (normally, CHM 305 or 405, and 306 or 406), one semester of inorganic chemistry (normally, CHM 407 or 408), one semester of experimental chemistry (CHM 371), multivariable calculus (MAT 201 or 203), linear algebra (MAT 202 or 204), and exposure to biochemistry (typically, MOL 345). EEB/MOL 214 satisfies the biochemistry requirement, but is not counted as a departmental course; some upper-level courses in molecular biology or one of several different advanced chemistry courses also satisfy the requirement.

Chemistry Outreach Program. Nothing serves to foster excitement about science more than well-planned chemical demonstrations and activities. Many chemistry faculty, staff, and students participate in programs for local schools, museums, community groups, and youth organizations. The Chemistry Outreach Program gives chemistry concentrators hands-on experience with demonstrations and presentations and the opportunity to increase interest in science in the schools and the community. After a brief series of training sessions, chemistry outreach students, in concert with faculty and staff, present programs for visitors to Princeton and at local schools, museums, or libraries. The training sessions emphasize effective presentation, safe practice, choice of age-appropriate activities, and coordination with local educational requirements. They include laboratory sessions in which students master demonstrations and activities tested by the department or by the American Chemical Society. Students may also develop or help to develop new demonstrations or activities, and they may help with other science programs, such as the New Jersey State Science Olympiad. Interested students should contact Dr. Kathryn Wagner, director, kmwagner@princeton.edu.


Courses


CHM 201 General Chemistry I   Fall STL

An introductory course. Principles of chemistry; understanding the world around us; structure and reactions of atoms and molecules; laboratory manipulations, preparations, and analysis. Fulfills medical school entrance requirements in general chemistry and qualitative analysis. Three lectures, one class, one three-hour laboratory. Open to those whose mathematics preparation is insufficient to qualify them for 203. M. Hecht, R. L'Esperance

CHM 202 General Chemistry II   Spring STL

Continuation of 201. Principles of chemistry; introduction to chemical bonding and solid state structure; chemical kinetics, nuclear chemistry; descriptive inorganic chemistry; laboratory manipulations, preparations, and analysis. Fulfills medical school entrance requirements in general chemistry and qualitative analysis. Three lectures, one class, one three-hour laboratory. A. Bocarsly, R. L'Esperance

CHM 203 Advanced General Chemistry I   Not offered this year STL

The fundamental principles of chemistry; descriptive chemistry, molecular structure, and bonding. Lectures and demonstrations. Laboratory includes qualitative and quantitative methods in chemical analysis, as well as selected experiments in general chemistry. Fulfills medical school entrance requirements in general chemistry and qualitative analysis. Three lectures, one class, one three-hour laboratory. Staff

CHM 204 Advanced General Chemistry II   Not offered this year STL

Continuation of 203. Topics in chemistry selected to illustrate fundamental principles; electrochemistry, chemical kinetics, bonding, and descriptive chemistry focusing on inorganic chemistry. Lectures and demonstrations. Laboratory includes qualitative and quantitative methods in chemical analysis, as well as selected experiments in general chemistry. Fulfills medical school entrance requirements in general chemistry and qualitative analysis. Three lectures, one class, one three-hour laboratory. Staff

CHM 207 Advanced General Chemistry: Materials Chemistry   Fall STL

Introduction to the basic concepts of chemistry: stoichiometry, types of reactions, thermodynamics, quantum mechanics, and chemical bonding. Introduction to the structure, chemistry, and properties of technologically important materials: metals, semiconductors, ceramics, and polymers. Fulfills medical school requirements in general chemistry and qualitative analysis. Three lecture hours, one class, one three-hour laboratory. R. L'Esperance, S. Bernasek

CHM 215 Advanced General Chemistry: Honors Course   Not offered this year STL

An intensive study of fundamental theoretical and experimental principles. Topics are drawn from physical, organic, and inorganic chemistry. For students with excellent preparation who are considering scientific careers. Fulfills medical school entrance requirements in general chemistry and qualitative analysis. Completion of 215 qualifies the student for 300-level courses and some 400-level courses after consultation with the instructor of the upper-level course. Three lectures, one class, one three-hour laboratory. Staff

CHM 231 An Integrated, Quantitative Introduction to the Natural Sciences I (see ISC 231)

CHM 232 An Integrated, Quantitative Introduction to the Natural Sciences I (see ISC 232)

CHM 233 An Integrated, Quantitative Introduction to the Natural Sciences II (see ISC 233)

CHM 234 An Integrated, Quantitative Introduction to the Natural Sciences II (see ISC 234)

CHM 235 An Integrated, Quantitative Introduction to the Natural Sciences III (see ISC 235)

CHM 236 An Integrated, Quantitative Introduction to the Natural Sciences IV (see ISC 236)

CHM 255 Life in the Universe (see GEO 255)

CHM 301 Organic Chemistry I   Not offered this year STL

An introductory course that covers the structures, properties, spectroscopy, and reactivity of organic compounds. Students will learn the mechanisms of organic chemistry and general principles through a combination of lectures and problemsolving in small groups. The course may be followed by 302 or 304. This course is appropriate for students in chemistry, biology, and premedical programs. Prerequisite: 201 and 202; or 203 (or 207) and 204; or 215; or a score of 5 on the AP Chemistry Exam. Three lectures, one three-hour laboratory. Staff

CHM 302 Organic Chemistry II   Not offered this year STL

Continuation of 301. The principles introduced in 301 are extended to the structures and reactions of more complex, often polyfunctional molecules. Small-group problemsolving is emphasized. This course is appropriate for students in chemistry, biology, and premedical programs. Prerequisite: 301. Three classes, one three-hour laboratory. Staff

CHM 303 Organic Chemistry I: Biological Emphasis   Fall STL

Introductory course devoted to the concepts of organic chemistry, including the structures, properties, and reactivity of simpler organic compounds. Emphasis on the mechanisms of organic chemistry; examples from biology when appropriate to illustrate the principles. The course should be followed by 304 in spring. Appropriate for students in biology or premedical programs. Prerequisite: 201 and 202; or 203 (or 207) and 204; or 215; or a score of 5 on the AP Chemistry Exam. Three lectures, one preceptorial, one three-hour laboratory. A. Doyle, H. Gingrich, M. Semmelhack

CHM 304 Organic Chemistry II: Foundations of Chemical Reactivity and Synthesis   Spring STL

Continuation of 303 (or 301). The concepts introduced in CHM 303 will be extended to the structures and reactions of more complex molecules, with an emphasis on how organic chemistry provides the framework for understanding molecular processes in biology. The fundamental concepts of organic chemistry will be illustrated, as often as possible, with examples drawn from biological systems. Prerequisite: 301 or 303. Three lectures, one preceptorial, one three-hour laboratory. E. Sorensen, H. Gingrich, P. Reider

CHM 305 The Quantum World   Fall STN

Introduction to quantum mechanics, surveying applications in chemistry, physics, molecular biology, and molecular imaging. Computer-based tools will be emphasized. Prerequisites: CHM 202 or 204 or 215; MAT 102 or 104; PHY 101 or 102 or AP Physics. Three lectures, one preceptorial. Z. Soos

CHM 306 Physical Chemistry: Chemical Thermodynamics and Kinetics   Spring STN

Introduction to chemical thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and kinetics. Special emphasis on biological problems, including nerve conduction, muscle contraction, ion transport, enzyme mechanisms, and macromolecular properties in solutions. Three lectures. Prerequisites: 201 and 202, or 203 (or 207) and 204, or 215; MAT 104; PHY 101 and 102, or PHY 103 and 104; or instructor's permission. M. Kelly

CHM 331 Environmental Geochemistry: Chemistry of the Natural Systems (see GEO 363)

CHM 333 Oil to Ozone: Chemistry of the Environment (also ENV 333)   Spring STN

The chemistry behind environmental issues, including energy consumption, atmospheric change, water consumption and pollution, food production and toxic chemicals. The course includes discussion of questions and problems, guest lectures, and a group project to construct an informational Web page. Prerequisites: a 200-level chemistry course or permission of instructor. F. Morel, A. Morel-Kraepiel

CHM 345 Biochemistry (see MOL 345)

CHM 364 Earth Chemistry: The Major Realms of the Planet (see GEO 364)

CHM 371 Experimental Chemistry   Fall STL

Discusses the principles of experimental design, data acquisition, analysis and interpretation, and the presentation of experimental results. Students are exposed to a broad range of quantitative laboratory methods in preparation for thesis work in chemistry. Typical laboratory exercises include synthesis, physical characterization, spectroscopy, kinetics, thermodynamics, electronics ,and instrument design. Lectures on experimental design, data analysis, interpretation, and presentation. Two lectures, two three-hour laboratories. M. Kelly, C. Wang

CHM 403 Advanced Organic Chemistry   Fall STN

A selection of advanced topics in organic chemistry. Topics include reaction mechanisms, synthetic chemistry, chemistry of biologically important molecules. Selected biosynthetic pathways are compared and contrasted to synthetic approaches. Three lectures. Prerequisites: 301 and 302 (or 304); or, 303 and 304. J. Groves

CHM 405 Advanced Physical Chemistry: Quantum Mechanics   Fall STN

Introduction to quantum theory, atomic and molecular structure, and spectroscopy. This course will emphasize the development of fundamental underlying principles and illustrative examples. Prerequisites: 202, 204, or 215; MAT 201 or 203 (required); MAT 202 or 204 (very helpful, even if taken concurrently); PHY 103 (may be taken concurrently) or AP Physics. Three lectures, one preceptorial. A. Selloni, H. Rabitz

CHM 406 Advanced Physical Chemistry: Chemical Dynamics and Thermodynamics   Spring STN

Statistical thermodynamics, kinetics, and molecular reaction dynamics. Three lectures. Prerequisites: background in thermodynamics as developed in 202, 204, or 215; MAT 201 or equivalent. C. Wang

CHM 407 Inorganic Chemistry: Structure and Bonding   Fall STN

Structural principles and bonding theories are discussed for the various classes of inorganic and organometallic compounds. Includes an introduction to the electronic structure of transition elements and ligand field theory. Prerequisites: 201 and 202, or 207 and 202, or 215, or advanced placement. Three lectures. S. VanderKam

CHM 408 Inorganic Chemistry: Reactions and Mechanisms   Spring STN

Synthetic and mechanistic aspects of inorganic chemistry are presented; modern problems in inorganic chemistry are emphasized. Prerequisites: 201 and 202, or 207 and 202, or 215, or advanced placement. Three lectures. J. Schwartz

CHM 415 Polymers (see CBE 415)

CHM 418 Environmental Aqueous Geochemistry (see GEO 418)

CHM 421 Catalytic Chemistry (see CBE 421)

CHM 443 Pharmaceutical Research and Health Policy (see WWS 327)

CHM 448 Chemistry, Structure, and Structure-Function Relations of Nucleic Acids (see MOL 448)

CHM 470 Environmental Chemistry of Soils (see GEO 470)