Conditions of Use
The book is inappropriate for first year first semester chemistry students. For example, no stoichiometry. It introduces topics that are often inadequately covered. For example, Lewis structures, acid/base chemistry, kinetics, equilibrium which... read more
The book is inappropriate for first year first semester chemistry students. For example, no stoichiometry. It introduces topics that are often inadequately covered. For example, Lewis structures, acid/base chemistry, kinetics, equilibrium which are covered in more detail in standard text books. Teaching from thermochemistry first makes this confusing. Teaching atoms often involves advanced physics. I don't see how this replaces standard texts.
Many typos, example -OH instead OH-. Other things like lack of subscripts. Excess verbiage which MS Word highlights. The text would be helped by a good edit to fix the problems. I used the MS Word version. Equations are not separated and run on with the text.
Seems up to date. My main criticism is show the material is presented. Everything seems out of order in the way students learn topics. I likes the presentation on spectroscopy but it seems a little advanced for the first year student.
Many typos, example -OH instead OH-. Other things like lack of subscripts. Excess verbiage which MS Word highlights. The text would be helped by a good edit to fix the problems. I used the MS Word version. Equations are not separated and run on with the text. The Introduction to the Student uses too complex verbiage that my students would have difficulty understanding, especially community college students.
Seems OK to me, but many things could have been more detailed rather than often stating that this will be covered later or in later chapters. Especially in thermodynamics and molecular structure.
Seems complete in topic headings and material in the topics. It's just that most topics lack sufficient background in their presentation, and some topics are too briefly covered, usually not enough filler for the topics covered.
It seems out of order, but I appreciate the authors' willingness to try a new approach. Definitely not suited for a first year first semester STEM student.
Definitely a big problem in the MS Word edition. Tables are not titles and missing information and are completely out of order. Tables and images are not titled and nor well explained or larger enough.
Definitely needs editing. To wordy, lacking proper punctuation, subtitles, superscripts.
I guess it seems OK. I couldn't see any problems except for accessibility review.
I'm not sure where this book fits in the curriculum. Seems more suitable for advanced students needing a review.
The index of the text itself is complete and comprehensive, as are the details included in the companion “CLUE Learning Objectives” and “Big Ideas of CLUE Curriculum” documents. This comprehensiveness is supported by the organization and... read more
The index of the text itself is complete and comprehensive, as are the details included in the companion “CLUE Learning Objectives” and “Big Ideas of CLUE Curriculum” documents. This comprehensiveness is supported by the organization and modularity of the text, making it a strong resource for introductory and/or general chemistry. However, the lack of dedicated sections on stoichiometry and electrochemistry may make some instructors hesitant to adopt the text. However, the ”Preface to the Course” section makes these exclusions explicit and provides the instructor resources to address the content.
The text is accurate and discusses the major topics of general chemistry. It also includes citations throughout each chapter, along with links to companion resources for students and instructors to visit. The text was last updated in 2019, and so is still relevant and accurate for current generations of introductory chemists.
While this textbook covers introductory/general chemistry topics in an “Atoms First” approach, it also adds a larger commentary and context to how science is done, who it’s done by (science is for everyone!), and how phenomena at the atomic scale leads to phenomena at macroscopic scales. The text tries to engage the student with each topic, challenging them to ask and answer “why?” with each chapter. In this sense, the text’s content is relevant in terms of chemistry but also regarding student motivation and engagement.
The text is very comprehensive, but the architecture makes it somewhat difficult to navigate. For example, pre- and post-chapter formatting differs between the ePub and .pdf version of the text; in the ePub text, the post-chapter content includes a thorough, but unlabeled, footnote/works cited section that a student could easily pass over without realizing its importance. However, the text is written in an approachable way, explaining common misconceptions, and using direct language to illustrate a point. Any technical terms are clearly defined, but could benefit from a distinct font treatment or inset to highlight those definitions.
Each section within every chapter contains knowledge checks (“Questions to Answer”) to allow students to practice the material and check their understanding. They also contain slightly more challenging questions (“Questions to Ponder”) that are more theoretical or conceptual in nature, allowing students to synthesize knowledge from multiple sections. In the online ePub version, the end of each chapter has footnotes/works cited that also serve as additional resources (links) that expand on the information presented in the texts, however these are not labeled making it likely that students will skip over them. In contrast, the .pdf document includes these at the bottom of each page, making these materials easier to see and access. Each chapter also begins with a brief summary of relevant previous chapters, which is great to prime students to build on the previous content. However, the formatting of this section is different for some chapters (Ch. 5 “Systems Thinking,” for example) which is somewhat distracting.
The organization of the text and the companion recitation materials make it very modular, or a particularly good resource for units on atomic properties, bonding, and intermolecular forces. The companion mock exams and recitation activities are very well designed and aligned with the learning objectives listed for each “Big Idea.” These companion materials would be great resources for students on their own.
The text follows the same general organization of the “Atoms First” approach to general chemistry: the text progresses from atomic theory to electrons and orbital theory, to elements/bonding/physical properties, to compounds and intermolecular forces, to energetics (“systems thinking”), then to solutions, a primer on chemical reactions (Acid-Base, Nucleophile and Electrophile, Redox), kinetics and equilibrium, and ending in buffered systems. While this approach is more traditional, the text and companion pieces are sufficiently modular to support a different order of topics.
The .pdf file lacks clickable links to sections of the book (no bookmarks within the .pdf or links to sections in the index), which makes reading the book in a generic .pdf reader cumbersome. This is not an issue if reading the text online in the supported Michigan State University Libraries’ ePub browser, but it would be nice if pictures could be clicked to enlarge or open in another tab with alt-text. In the .pdf version of the text, some links do not work, and some images are cut-off, making it difficult to read and interpret. The inclusion of figure legends or alt-text for each figure would enhance accessibility and clearly label each diagram, as the formatting and positioning of the text relative to the figures is different in the ePub reader and in the .pdf.
There are some typos and grammatical errors in the preface, but otherwise few throughout the text.
As described in the relevance section, the text tries to emphasize how science is done and calls attention to the historical contributions of scientists. For the most part, the text avoids colloquialisms and uses direct, approachable language.
The text has several companion materials for the instructor, including five (5) recitation activities and four (4) mock exams. The learning objectives for the texts are broken down by chapter and by semester (General Chemistry I vs. General Chemistry II); learning objectives are also aligned with those specified by the American Chemical Association (ACS) for general chemistry. The learning objectives are well-conceived; they are specific and emphasize behaviors/tasks the students should be able to perform after each chapter.
In the companion documents “CLUE Learning Objectives” and “Big Ideas of CLUE,” each chapter is comprised of a series of “Big Ideas.” The “Big Ideas” are a mixture of chapter topics and larger themes that run throughout chemistry (for example: conservation of matter, stoichiometry, intermolecular forces). The authors’ attention to detail is evident; the granular breakdown of learning objectives and topics lend itself well to modularity and customization of the text/course on the part of the instructor. Overall, I appreciate this level of detail and how this level of organization allows the text and topics to be distributed over the course of one or multiple semesters.
Table of Contents
- 1. Atoms
- 2. Electrons and Orbitals
- 3. Elements, Bonding, and Physical Properties
- 4. Heterogeneous Compounds
- 5. Systems Thinking
- 6. Solutions
- 7. A Field Guide to Chemical Reactions
- 8. How Far? How Fast?
- 9. Reaction Systems
About the Book
This text is intended to provide an in-depth introduction to the key ideas in chemistry. We have designed the book to show how these ideas are developed from simple to complex systems and how they relate to each other. We consider three ideas central to an understanding of chemistry: the structure of matter, the properties of matter, and the energy changes involved in the reorganization of matter; all are connected by the interactions or forces that cause matter to interact. We aim to provide compelling reasons why you will find yourself wanting to learn chemistry and to illustrate what you will be able to do with this knowledge once you have learned it.
About the Contributors
Melanie M. Cooper is a professor in the Chemistry department at Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI
Michael W. Klymkowsky, PhD is a biology professor at University of Colorado. Over the past few decades, his interests have evolved from membrane-enveloped bacterial viruses, through acetylcholine receptor structure and synaptic assembly, to the organization and function of the cytoskeleton, specifically intermediate filaments and the role of adhesion proteins in the regulation of gene expression.