cod. 13103

Academic year 2014/15
2° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Chimica generale e inorganica (CHIM/03)
Attività formative affini o integrative
Type of training activity
48 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit
in - - -

Learning objectives

Knowledge and understanding: the course is designed to provide the fundamental concepts necessary to undertake the study of Chemistry. In particular, the course aims to highlight the fundamental principles that, starting from the electronic structure of the atom, lead to the structure of molecules to supramolecular aggregates up to solids (covalent, metallic and ionic) and complex systems, as well as the energetic aspects through which the principles of thermodynamics allows the rationalization of chemical reactivity.

Applied knowledge and understanding : the course provides the tools to interpret in a formal way the knowledge acquired in basic chemistry, allowing to relate the chemical reactivity to the structure of matter and to the principles of thermodynamics.

Learning skills: in addition to the methodological tools, the course provides the student with the ability to read and analyse the basic chemical reactivity, and to read and understand basic texts.

Ability to communicate: The course aims to enable the acquisition of a language formally correct, stimulating the ability to express the contents in a clear and straightforward manner.

Making judgments: Development of relationships among the concepts of basic chemicals.


A basic knowledge of inorganic chemistry nomenclature is required(oxides, hydroxides, acids)

Course unit content

The first part of the course will consider the matter from the microscopic point of view, dealing with the principles of the atomic / molecular theory. It then proceeds to describe how matter organizes on a macroscopic scale, treating the general characteristics of the aggregation state. To complete the course,as far as the chemical reactivity, it will be studied the fundamental principles of thermodynamics. The chemical reactivity is further developed through the exposure of the fundamental concepts of organic chemistry and biomolecules. Some topics of the course will be accompanied by conducting problems of stoichiometry.

Full programme

INTRODUCTION: history of Chemistry. Matter and energy. Physical quantities and units of measure. Characteristics of matter. The mass. The fundamental forces of nature. Substances and their properties. Physical systems, phases and components, mixtures and solutions.


Atomic models of Thomson and Rutherford. Proton, neutron, electron. Atomic number and atomic weight. Isotopes. Electromagnetic radiation. Quantum theory. Bohr atom. Wave-particle duality, de Broglie relation. Heisenberg's uncertainty principle. Schroedinger wave equation. Atomic orbitals and quantum numbers for the hydrogen atom. Principle of "Aufbau" (Pauli principle, Hund's rule). Electronic configuration of the elements. Periodic system.Periodic properties.


Types of chemical bond. Ionic bond. Introduction to the covalent bond. Lewis structures. Electronegativity,homo-and heteropolar covalent bond. Single bonds and multiple bonds. Molecular geometry, VSEPR theory. Valence bond theory (general principles, resonance, hybridization). The hybridization for the carbon atom. Molecular orbital theory (oxygen molecule). Metallic bond. Polarity of the molecules. Van der Waals interactions, hydrogen bond.


Types of transformations. State functions. First principle. Work and heat. Enthalpy. Thermochemistry. Degradation of energy, disorder. Entropy. Second principle. Third principle. Gibbs free energy. Spontaneity of a chemical process.


Chemical reactions and equilibrium. Law of mass action. Equilibrium constant. Gibbs free energy and equilibrium constant. External influence on the equilibrium (Le Chatelier's principle). Dependence of the equilibrium constant on temperature.


Gas properties. Ideal gas. Boyle's and Charles. Absolute temperature. Equation of state for ideal gases. Real gases. Liquefaction of gases.


Structure and properties of liquid. Evaporation. Vapor pressure. Boiling point.


Change of state. State diagrams.


Types and examples. Composition of solutions, the concentration. Intermolecular forces and enthalpy of solution. Ideal solutions. Solubility. Raoult's law and its deviations. Dissolution of a salt in water. Solvation. Colligative properties. Raising the boiling point and lowering the freezing point. Osmotic pressure, osmosis, reverse osmosis.


Structure and properties of solids. Crystalline solids and amorphous solids. Classification of crystalline solids (metallic, ionic, covalent, molecular). Polymorphism, allotropy.


Acids and bases. Bronsted-Lowry theory. Strength of acids and bases. Dissociation constants. Polyprotic acids. Relationship between acid-base properties and structure. Lewis acids and bases. Ionic product of water. pH, pH indicators. Hydrolysis of a salt. Buffer solutions. Ampholytes. Slightly soluble salts: solubility product, common ion effect. Acid-base titrations.


The hydrocarbons. Functional groups. Biomolecules.


From the elements to compounds: the periodic table, oxidation number, nomenclature of inorganic compounds; minimum formula, molecular structure. The reactivity: acid-base reactions, exchange reactions, redox reactions in molecular form and in ionic form. The stoichiometry: mole, equivalents.


J.C.KOTZ, P.TREICHEL, G.WEAVER: "Chimica", IV edizione, 2010, EdiSES, Napoli.

P.ATKINS, L.JONES: "Principi di chimica", III edizione, 2012, Zanichelli, Bologna.

Teaching methods

The course takes place within 48 hours of lectures, during which students are guided to understand the basic concepts and applications of general chemistry.

The lessons are accompanied by the projection of slides, previously provided to the student, so that he can more easily follow the discussion.
Care will be taken to constantly sugest a proper use of chemical language, and examples taken from "common life" will be proposed, to underline the correlations among the various parts of the course. active participation of students will be encouraged. The stoichiometry exercises are an essential part of the course since they allow verification of real understanding of chemical concepts and ability to apply them.

Assessment methods and criteria

Written and oral exam.The written examination is conducted to verify the acquisition and understanding of the formal concepts of basic chemistry, and the ability to properly carry out stoichiometric calculations.
The written exam is a prerequisite for access to the oral exam, designed to assess the student's ability to explain even complex concepts in a clear, properly manner using the scientific-technical language, and to use the acquired knowledge to relate different aspects of the basic chemistry.

Other information

On the website of the course the slides used for lectures,a series of exercises, as well as a series of questions preparatory to the final written test and written tests used over the last years are available. The teacher is available for clarifications and discussions by appointment.