||Course Materials||Getting an "A"
|Instructor Information||Course Requirements||Cheating Policy|
Dr. Erik Dunmire
Office Location: SMN 315
Office phone: (415) 485-9536
hours: Course email (sent via the Message function of
the course website) will be checked daily (Mon - Fri), and
will provide the quickest response to most questions. Regularly scheduled
on-campus and online office hours are posted on the
instructor's faculty homepage (http://www.marin.edu/homepages/ErikDunmire/home.htm).
a face-to-face meeting at another day or time, please contact
the instructor by email or telephone.
College e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Students must officially enroll in the class through the COM Admissions Office in order to gain admission to the course website through the college's MyCOM portal. Consult the Admissions page on the COM website for information about how to officially enroll.
When students officially enroll in the course, an account on the course website is automatically generated. Beginning on the first official day of the term, students can access the course website through their MyCOM student portal by clicking the Distance Education tab, then the Moodle icon, and then locating CHEM 105 in the Course list.
All students officially enrolled in the course must access the course website by midnight Wednesday of the first official week of the semester, or your place in the class will be given to someone on the "Add" list. If you are unable to access the course website, you must email the instructor at email@example.com before this deadline.
If you are on the official wait list for the course, or are attempting to add the course, you must e-mail the instructor as soon as possible for further instructions.
All originally enrolled students must complete, by midnight on the Saturday that ends the first week of classes, a set of Entrance Requirements that demonstrate ability to use the necessary features of the course website. Any students who have not completed these requirements by the deadline will be dropped from the course. Students who have been added later to the course must complete these Entrance Requirements within 3 days of receiving an add code in order to remain in the course.
If you later decide to drop the class and fail to officially withdraw with the Admissions Office before the appropriate deadline, you will receive an "F" in the course.
Access to a
computer with an internet connection and the capability to
utilize all features of the course website and the
multimedia series described below.
Textbook: Conceptual Chemistry, John Suchocki, Pearson Publishers.
and other chapter references in the course will follow the
organization of the 4th edition (2010, ISBN
0-13-605453-6). The new 5th edition contains all of
the content of the 4th edition (and more), and is
organized in essentially the same manner, and is therefore
completely suitable as well. It is possible but not
recommended to use earlier editions (e.g., 3rd) of the
text for this course. The 4th edition represented a
major rewrite and reorganization of the textbook; it is
the student's responsibility to locate the pertinent
information from any previous edition if used.
Video Tutorials: Conceptual Chemistry Alive
Chemistry Alive, a series of digital video lectures,
demonstrations, and tutorials created by the textbook
author to accompany the first twelve chapters of the text,
is an essential component of this course.
This video series (as well as other helpful resources) is accessed as streaming video from links on the course website or directly from the author's website: http://www.conceptualchemistry.com
Grades in the
course will be based upon 17 online quizzes,
2 online multiple-choice exams, a
proctored comprehensive final exam,
weekly online discussion forums, and
an individually written topic
report, as described below. Deadlines for all
assignments are provided in the Calendar and in the
individual assignment descriptions on the course website.
In lieu of
attending traditional lecture classes, students are expected
to engage in the following weekly activities in order to
access the necessary information in the course (note that only the last two items will be submitted for grading). Each week,
1. Read the appropriate chapter(s) in the textbook (approximately 20-30 pages).
2. View the video tutorial from conceptualchemistry.com for the current chapter. Each tutorial contains a variety of digital video lecture material, interviews, and demonstrations that will help you better understand the chapter concepts.
3. Complete the
odd-numbered questions (answers in the back of the book) and
the Readiness Assurance Test (answers at
conceptualchemistry.com) found at the end of each
chapter. Note that these do not need to be
4. Also view any additional material provided on the Concept Review page of the course website, and, ideally, complete the Practice Pages worksheets at conceptualchemistry.com.
5. Use the Conceptual Questions Forums on the course website to discuss, with your classmates and the instructor, questions you may have about the material (but not about specific answers to quiz questions).
Work on the currently available quiz that is posted on the
Discuss and answer any Q&A Forum questions that may be
assigned that week over the course website.
You will be
required to submit a number of short online multiple-choice
quizzes (10 to 20 questions), accessed via the course
website. These quizzes are intended to focus your
reading and studying, and to help prepare you for the
exams. You will get up to 3 attempts on each
quiz, as long as you complete all attempts by the
deadline and as long as you begin the quiz more than 24
hours before the deadline (there is a 12-hour "waiting
period" between attempts).
There are 2 different types of quizzes:
There are 12 'Core'
quizzes (Quiz 1 - Quiz 12), worth 20 points each, which will
be due weekly. Each quiz will cover one of the core
"conceptual" chapters (1-12) of the textbook. Each
quiz will be continuously available for the week
preceding its deadline, and there will be no time limit
(other than the deadline itself) for completing the
quiz. The best 10 of these 12 quiz scores will count
toward your final grade.
There are also 5
'Context' quizzes, worth 20 points each, that cover the
topical chapters (13-17) of the textbook (the last 3 of
these are available in electronic format from the website
for those who have a printed 4th edition version of the
text). These chapters will not be covered on the
Exams. However, students will probably find these chapters
to be the most interesting in the book, as they focus upon
important social and environmental issues (such as
nutrition, medicine, food production, water and air
pollution, and energy production). All of these
quizzes must be completed by the Saturday before Final Exam
week. The best 2 of these 5 quiz scores will count
toward your final grade.
Students are encouraged to look over the quiz questions and to contemplate the answers prior to reading a particular chapter (this will enhance your learning from the textbook). Students are also encouraged to post questions to the forums on topics about which they are still confused.
Only those quiz attempts that are submitted before the prescribed deadline will receive any points. Students are strongly encouraged to submit quizzes WELL BEFORE the due date, both to benefit from multiple attempts, and in case technical difficulties are encountered. NO MAKE-UPS OR EXTENSIONS WILL BE GRANTED UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES.
There will be two multiple-choice exams (250 pts each), administered over the course website, during the dates indicated on the calendar. Exam 1 will cover Chapters 1-5, and Exam 2 will cover Chapters 6-9 in the text.
Each exam has a 3-HOUR TIME LIMIT. The exam MUST be completed and electronically submitted before midnight on the due date (which means presumably that the latest you can start is 9pm that day). Although the exam will be available over a period of several days, once you click to view the exam, EVEN IF YOU DO NOT ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS, your 3-hour time limit will begin to count down. If you close your browser or if your computer crashes, the timer will continue to run.
If you have any difficulties accessing, completing, or submitting the exam, it is YOUR responsibility to contact the instructor immediately (i.e., before the deadline) by email or telephone. Again, students are strongly discouraged from waiting until the final day to take the exam, in case technical difficulties are encountered.
Although each exam
is open-book, it will cover a substantial amount of
material, and students must be intimately familiar with the
material in order to complete the exam within the time
limit. Students are encouraged to review their graded
quizzes and the end-of-chapter exercises as an aid to
preparation for the exams.
A comprehensive open-book multiple-choice Final Exam (500 pts) will be administered during the official final exam period at the end of the semester. Students will have 3 hours to complete the exam. It will include all of the material covered in Chapters 1-12 of the text. While students may use their textbook as a reference aid for the exam, students may not bring notes of any kind.
This final exam
must be taken according to ONE of the following 3 options:
Regardless of the
final exam location choice, ALL students must notify the
their final exam plans via the selection tool on the course
website, at least 1 week before the last day of classes.
Additionally, all students will be expected to present a valid Drivers License, Identification Card, or Passport for photo identification on the day of the final exam.
In addition to their textbook, students should bring a Number 2 pencil and a Scantron form (available at the COM Bookstore) to the final exam.
In order to help review some of the most important concepts in the course, and to explore their relevance to a few examples from the "human environment," I will pose open-ended discussion questions using the Q&A Forum activities on the course website.
After posting your initial response to the question, you will be able to read other students' responses and engage in a discussion aimed at clarifying the best answers to the questions. After the posting deadline for each question has passed, I will then weigh in with my own response to the discussion.
You can earn up to 10 points in total for your initial and follow-up postings for each question, for a maximum of 100 points in total over the course of the semester applied to your final course grade. Additionally, a number of questions on the Exams will relate closely to these concepts and/or skills.
Because the goal of this course is to teach students chemistry as it applies to the "human environment," both the textbook and the course assignments try to emphasize important relevant applications of the chemical concepts being covered. It is hoped that the knowledge that students gain in the course will provide them with a sufficient background to better understand contemporary issues with which they will come in contact throughout their day-to-day lives. The topic report assignment will require students to begin this process of "going beyond the textbook."
Students are expected to research an area of interest to them, and of importance to society, that relates to a topic discussed in one of the Contextual Chemistry Spotlight Essays following each chapter, or in one of the "Topic Chapters" (Chs 13-17). Students should write (IN THEIR OWN WORDS) a summary and analysis of their findings, and submit it via the course website. This report, which should include appropriate referencing, is due by the date indicated on the calendar, but may be posted earlier if desired.
Scores (maximum of 100 points) will be based upon whether the report:
|Entrance Quiz||20 pts||Grade||Point Total|
|Core Quizzes (Best 10 of 12)
||1375 - 1500 pts
|Context Quizzes (Best 2 of 5)
||1325 - 1374 pts
|Exams (2 x 250 pts)
||1275 - 1324 pts
||1200 - 1274 pts
|Q&A Forums||100 pts
||1175 - 1199 pts
|Topic Report||100 pts
||1125 - 1174 pts
|Pre-Term Knowledge Survey||20 pts
||1000 - 1124 pts
|Post-Term Knowledge Survey||20 pts||D+
||950 - 999 pts
||875 - 949 pts
||825 - 874 pts
|1000 - 1500 pts
||750 - 824 pts
|0 - 999 pts
||0 - 749 pts
My first advice is that you set aside specific time (about 9 hours total for most students) in your schedule each week to complete the work for this class (I would recommend dividing this time up between several different days). Since there is no in-person meeting time for the class, it is tempting for students to think that they can squeeze in the work here and there between other activities. This is a mistake. It is important to remember that online classes require MORE time than typical in-person classes, not less.
If you follow the first piece of advice, it is likely that this next piece of advice will come naturally--KEEP UP! Since chemistry is a subject that builds layer upon layer, a weakness in your foundation of understanding from early in the course will make your understanding of later concepts in the course shaky. By the second half of the semester, you will find yourself completely lost. If you plan to have a lapse in diligence, make sure it's near the end of the semester, not the beginning.
For your weekly activities, I would advise the following order of events:
First, view the video tutorial that corresponds to the current chapter. The video lectures and demonstrations are very understandable and will help introduce you to concepts and terminology; in essence, they will "warm up" your brain to better receive more information.
Next, look over the questions on the current quiz, and spend a few seconds contemplating each of the answers. Even if some of the questions seem like they are in a foreign language, you will be setting up cues in your brain that will prove useful later.
After looking over the quiz, sit down and read the chapter in the book, keeping a printout of your quiz nearby (or keeping the window open on your computer, if you prefer). As you read, you should immediately recognize topics that were addressed in some of the quiz questions, which you can stop and answer as you finish reading the relevant sections of the chapter.
Even after you've finished reading the chapter covered on the quiz, some of the questions will probably still remain unanswered. Now you can go back over the chapter, re-reading the sections that correspond to your unanswered questions. Make sure to also review the exercises and RATs at the end of each chapter, as some of the questions will come directly from them (the answers to the odd-numbered exercises are provided in the back of the book). Also check the Concept Review page for the current chapter.
After submitting your first quiz attempt, review the graded
quiz and see which questions you missed. Use the
feedback for the question to focus your studying on the
relevant material. If you are still confused about the
answer after reviewing the textbook, post a question to the
Forum. Even if you do well on your first quiz attempt,
you may want to take the quiz again just to verify your
understanding on a variety of different questions (note that
the highest quiz score will be counted).
While group studying and group discussions of course material are tolerated and encouraged, only individual work (quizzes, exams and topic report) will be accepted. Assistance on quizzes or exams or duplicated written assignments will be considered cheating and both students will receive zero points for the assignment, will be dropped from the course, and will be subject to disciplinary action regardless of whose original work is represented.
Plagiarism is both illegal and dishonest. Only original work will be accepted for written assignments (topic report). Any material which is directly copied from a website or printed document must be properly indicated and referenced. Failure to provide proper referencing will result in zero points for the assignment, an F in the class, and disciplinary action for the student.
It is a violation of academic conduct to share the contents of any of the exams, quizzes or other class materials. In addition, it is a violation to share user names and passwords. If your user name and password are used by someone other than yourself, with or without your knowledge, you are in violation. Please keep your user name and password private. Violators will receive an F in the class and may be expelled from the college. Only registered students are allowed access to the online class site.
Please consult the Catalog and Student Handbook for further clarification and consequences of academic misconduct.