3.091 | Fall 2018 | Undergraduate

Introduction to Solid State Chemistry

Instructor Insights

Instructor Insights

"Every time we teach, we can take what we’re teaching and try to give it some sort of context."
— Prof. Jeffrey Grossman

Below, Professor Jeffrey Grossman describes various aspects of how he teaches 3.091 Introduction to Solid-State Chemistry.

Learn More! In the following video from MIT’s Festival of Learning in 2018, Professor Grossman discusses his use of goodie bags and real-life applications in teaching:

Hands-on Chemistry Learning in 3.091 from the 2018 Festival of Learning

Watch the video excerpt of Professor Grossman’s introductory speech to the students:

Video excerpt of Professor Grossman’s closing remarks to the students in the final lecture:

Curriculum Information



Requirements Satisfied


Every semester


The students’ grades were based on the following activities:

  • 25% Quizzes
  • 15% Exam 1
  • 15% Exam 2
  • 15% Exam 3
  • 30% Final exam

Student Information


455 (enrollment increasing in recent years).

Breakdown by Year

Primarily first-year students.

Breakdown by Major

Various majors, particularly in engineering, science, and health-related fields.

Typical Student Background

Most first-year students at MIT will have had one year of high-school-level chemistry.

How Student Time Was Spent

During an average week, students were expected to spend 12 hours on the course, divided as follows:


Met 3 times per week for 1 hour per session; 39 sessions total; mandatory attendance.


Recitations, led by graduate or advanced undergraduate teaching assistants, met 2 times per week for 1 hour per session; in these sessions, students reviewed concepts from the lectures and took regular quizzes.

Out of Class

Outside of class, students completed hands-on homework activities (ungraded) and prepared for quizzes and exams.

Course Info

As Taught In
Fall 2018
Learning Resource Types
theaters Lecture Videos
theaters Tutorial Videos
assignment_turned_in Problem Sets with Solutions
grading Exams
menu_book Online Textbook
co_present Instructor Insights