There are four exams and one final exam in this course. A sheet that includes a list of physical constants, a periodic table without electron configurations, and most equations is supplied for each exam.
Instructions for Taking an Exam
- Read each part of each problem carefully and thoroughly.
- Read all parts of each problem. Many of the latter parts of a problem can be solved without having solved earlier parts. However, if you need a numerical result that you were not successful in obtaining for the computation of a latter part, make a physically reasonable approximation for that quantity (and indicate it as such) and use it to solve the latter parts.
- A problem that requests you to “calculate” implies that several calculation steps may be necessary for the problem’s solution.
Exam 1 covers Unit I: The Atom. You will see that most equations are given, but principles are not. You will need to know these principles. Examples include: How to determine the number of radial and angular nodes in a wavefunction; electron configurations; conservation of energy as applied to the photoelectric effect; the relationship between the four quantum numbers; and the physical significance of RPD. You should be able to sketch the RPD’s for all orbitals up through n = 4. These are examples of principles that you should know, but not an all-inclusive list.
Exam 2 covers Unit II: Chemical Bonding & Structure. It may also draw on earlier topics. The new equations for which you are responsible include calculating formal charge and bond order. You need to know relationships between electron affinity, ionization energy, binding energy, and electronegativity. In addition, you need to know principles that derive from the following topics: Trends in the periodic table; covalent, ionic, and polar covalent bonding; Lewis structures; VSEPR; MO theory; valence bond theory; and hybridization. These are examples of principles that you should know, but this is not an all-inclusive list.
You are responsible for knowing the following guidelines for relative MO energies:
For homonuclear diatomic molecules:
- The relative E ordering is πpx and πpy < σpz if Z < 8.
- The relative E ordering is σpz < πpx and πpy if Z = or > 8 for any row two elements and other examples we will see in this course (or on the exam).
For heteronuclear diatomic molecules:
- The relative E ordering is πpx and πpy < σpz if Z < 8 for both atoms.
- You are not responsible for predicting the energy level ordering if either one of the atoms has Z = or > 8.
For MO diagrams,
- Label increasing energy with an arrow next to the diagram.
- Pay attention to whether the question asks for valence electrons or all electrons.
- For any bonding orbital drawn, include the corresponding anti-bonding orbital, even if it is not filled with any electrons.
- Label each atomic orbital (1s, 2s, 2px, 2py, 2pz, etc.) and each molecular orbital (σ2s, π2px, π2py, etc.) that you draw.
- Fill in the electrons for both the atomic and molecular orbitals.
Exam 3 covers Unit III: Thermodynamics & Chemical Equilibrium, which includes the subtopics of solubility and acid-base equilibrium. It may also draw on earlier topics. To study for this exam, the key is to work problems, particularly acid-base titration problems and buffer problems.
Exam 4 covers Unit IV: Transition Metals & Oxidation-Reduction Reactions and the first two lectures of Unit V: Chemical Kinetics. It may also draw on earlier topics. For example, an oxidation-reduction problem could be combined with an acid-base problem. You are given a list of weak, intermediate, and strong field ligands; the wavelengths associated with the visible spectrum of light; and complementary color information. Equations that you need and won’t be provided include those for calculating electron d-counts, and CFSE.
Approximately 80% of the final exam is on Exam 1–4 material. The remaining 20% of the final exam covers the new material from Unit V: Chemical Kinetics (Lectures 32–34). Equations that you are responsible for are the same as those for the in-class exams. For the new material, you are required to know ΔE = Ea,f-Ea,r.