CHEM 1100 - Chemistry IA

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2020

Structure Determination - the importance of molecular shape and how chemists determine the structure of compounds using spectroscopic techniques including ultraviolet, infrared and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Acids and Bases - aspects of acid/base equilibria. Atoms to Molecules - structure of the atom and molecular bonding. Periodicity and the Main Group - chemistry of the main group metals and non-metals. Transition Metal Chemistry - an introduction to bonding in transition (d-block) elements, coordination complexes, bioinorganic systems.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code CHEM 1100
    Course Chemistry IA
    Coordinating Unit School of Physical Sciences
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 7 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites SACE Stage 2 Chemistry with Subject Achievement grade of at least C+ or equivalent - in exceptional circumstances, consult Head of Chemistry
    Incompatible CHEM 1101, CHEM 1310, CHEM 1510 & CHEM 1511
    Course Description Structure Determination - the importance of molecular shape and how chemists determine the structure of compounds using spectroscopic techniques including ultraviolet, infrared and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Acids and Bases - aspects of acid/base equilibria. Atoms to Molecules - structure of the atom and molecular bonding. Periodicity and the Main Group - chemistry of the main group metals and non-metals. Transition Metal Chemistry - an introduction to bonding in transition (d-block) elements, coordination complexes, bioinorganic systems.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Natalie Williamson

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    A successful student should be able to:

    1. develop critical thinking and enhance their problem solving ability;
    2. discuss the principles of scientific methodology and collaborative work;
    3. determine the structure of an unknown molecule given appropriate spectroscopic data;
    4. explain what acids and bases are and how to measure and quantify acidity, basicity and the behaviour of buffer solutions;
    5. describe the electronic structure of a given atom;
    6. describe the structure of simple diatomic molecules using a molecular orbital bonding model;
    7. apply knowledge of the structure of the Periodic Table to describe trends in the properties of the elements;
    8. define and explain the chemistry of the first period transition metals, in particular their complexes;
    9. recognise and explain the importance of transition metals in biological processes;
    10. demonstrate proficiency in common chemistry laboratory techniques.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    1, 10
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    2, 10
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    1, 2
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources

    The textbook for Chemistry IA/B is 'Chemistry', 4th edition, Blackman et al., (Wiley) and it is recommended that students acquire their own copy.

    Additional notes may be issued for individual sections of the course.

    Recommended Resources

    Other sources for recommended reading may be provided by lecturers on an as-needed basis.

    Online Learning

    It is important that all students maintain active communication channels with the Chemistry Discipline throughout the course. The primary communication channels from the Discipline to students are email and MyUni for course-related announcements, teaching material and additional resources.

    The University's online learning management system, MyUni (, will be used to provide students with a variety of learning resources, including (but not limited to) the following:

    * Lecture notes
    * Lecture recordings
    * Workshop questions and solutions
    * Computer practical exercises
    * Links to summative assignments
    * Links to other websites that may assist learning, such as maths help

    All learning resources will be provided electronically, and no printed copies will be supplied.

    MyUni will also be used on a regular basis to post announcements about assessment deadlines and other information related to the course and to send students emails to their University-provided student email account. 
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes

    This course is delivered by the following means:

    • Lectures 36 x 50-minute sessions with three sessions per week
    • Workshops 12 x 50-minute sessions with one session per week, beginning in week 2
    • Practical 6 x 3-hour sessions with one session per fortnight

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    A student enrolled in a 3 unit course, such as this, should expect to spend, on average 12 hours per week on the studies required. This includes both the formal contact time required to the course (e.g., lectures and practicals), as well as non-contact time (e.g., reading and revision).

    Learning Activities Summary

    The course content includes the following:

    Part 1 – Structure Determination. The importance of molecular shape and how chemists determine the structure of compounds using spectroscopic techniques including ultraviolet, infrared and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy.

    Part 2 – Acids and Bases. Aspects of acid/base equilibria.

    Part 3 – Atoms to Molecules. An introduction to the structure of the atom and molecular bonding.

    Part 4 – Periodicity and the Main Group. A look at the chemistry of the main group metals and non-metals.

    Part 5 – Transition Metal Chemistry. An introduction to bonding in transition (d-block) elements, coordination complexes, bioinorganic systems

    Specific Course Requirements
    Attendance is compulsory at all scheduled chemistry practical sessions.  

    The learning outcomes for this course are substantially dependent on laboratory experience and practice.  Therefore, missing any practical class in a semester will result in a grade of FAIL being recorded for the course.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Due to the current COVID-19 situation modified arrangements have been made to assessments to facilitate remote learning and teaching.
    Assessment task Type of assessment Percentage of total assessment for grading purposes # Hurdle
    Yes or No #
    Outcomes being assessed/achieved
    Computer assessed assignments Summative 20% No Part 1: 1-3
    Part 2: 1, 2, 4
    Part 3: 1, 2, 5, 6
    Part 4: 1, 2, 7
    Part 5: 1, 2, 8, 9
    Lecture tests Summative 20% No 1-9
    Practical work Summative 20% Yes
    1, 2, 10
    Examination Summative 40% No 1-9
    Online practice exercises Formative 0% No Part 1: 1-3
    Part 2: 1, 2, 4
    Part 3: 1, 2, 5, 6
    Part 4: 1, 2, 7
    Part 5: 1, 2, 8, 9
    Assessment Related Requirements

    Practical work is compulsory – This includes attendance, conduct of required experimental work, attendance at demonstrator interviews (as required) and submission of laboratory reports.

    To pass this course, students must attain at least 50% for the practical work.  Additional assessment will be offered to eligible students who do not meet the practical hurdle requirement.

    Assessment Detail

    Computer assessed assignments: (20% of total course grade)
    Four computer assessed assignments (one per part; each part’s summative component will be worth a total of 5% of the overall course grade) will be used to assess progressive understanding of course material. Students receive instant feedback on submission.

    Lecture Tests: (20% of total course grade)
    There will be two lecture tests each semester, worth 10% each, making up 20% in total of your final grade for the course each semester. Lecture tests will occur around the halfway mark and towards the end of each semester. Lecture tests may consist of multiple choice or numerical answer questions or a combination of these.

    Practical work: (20% of total course grade)
    Practical reports will be handed in fortnightly online from week 7 and promptly assessed to provide continual feedback to students and a sense of progressive accomplishment in the course. On a date(s) to be determined, all students will be required to complete practical tasks in the laboratory to ensure development of practical skills.

    Examination: (40% of total course grade)
    An end-of-semester written examination will be used to summatively assess understanding of the course material.
    The examination will consist of a combination of multiple choice/numerical answer questions and short answer questions.

    Online Practice Exercises: (0% of total course grade)
    Students will be provided with a series of online practice exercises to enable them to test their understanding of the course material. Students receive instant feedback on submission and will be able to retake any question (or exercise as a whole) as many times as they wish.


    Submission of Assigned Work
    A lab report book will be provided in the first practical session. Before practical reports are submitted, students must ensure they have signed and dated the Plagiarism and Collusion section on the Feedback and Assessment page. This must be done for EACH practical. Note that report books must not be removed from the laboratory.

    Extensions for Assessment Tasks
    Extensions of deadlines for assessment tasks may be allowed for reasonable causes. Such situations would include compassionate and medical grounds of the severity that would justify the awarding of a supplementary examination. Evidence for the grounds must be provided when an extension is requested. Students are required to apply for an extension to the Course Coordinator before the assessment task is due. Extensions will not be provided on the grounds of poor prioritising of time. The assessment extension application form can be obtained from: 

    Late submission of assessments
    If an extension is not applied for, or not granted then a penalty for late submission will apply.  A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment for each calendar day that the assignment is late (i.e. weekends count as 2 days), up to a maximum of 50% of the available marks will be applied. This means that an assignment that is 5 days late or more without an approved extension can only receive a maximum of 50% of the marks available for that assignment.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.