The Big Picture

Course Goals

Chem 352 provides an introduction to how chemists and biochemists leverage equilibrium chemistry to control the speciation of chemically and biochemically important compounds and to separate complex mixtures of such compounds into their constituent parts. As with any area of chemistry, the possible topics are too broad to cover in a single semester; our content-specific goals, which necessarily are modest, are to:

In addition to these content-specific goals, we have several broader goals; these are to:

The Nitty-Gritty Details

Textbook and Other Resources

The primary text for this course is Analytical Chemistry 2.1, a free digitial textbook that provides a broad introduction to analytical chemistry. You can download the text, or selected chapters, using this link. Additional resources are available on the course's archive page.

The schedule provides daily reading assignments and suggested end-of-chapter problems, which provide practice in the basic calculations necessary for success in this course. You should use these end-of-chapter problems to test your facility with these calculations; answers to these problems are included at the end of the textbook. We will spend much of our time in class working on more comprehensive and more integrative problems that build on these basic calculations and that better reflect typical exam questions.

We will make use of the free computational programming language R and the integrated development environment RStudio to handle many calculations. Instructions on how to download R and RStudio are provided in class. As with any programming language, R has a syntax that we need to learn. As Chem 352 is not a programming course (!), you should never let the language get in the way of learning the course's core topics. If you cannot get R to do what you want it to do, then drop by during office hours.

Course Structure

The course consists of three units, each ending in a take-home exam that consists of short written answers, short quantitive problems, and more involved quantitative problems. The first unit covers the basics of equilibrium chemistry, building upon and extending our coverage of this topic in Chem 260. In the second unit we will develop a general theory of separation and apply it to chemical and biochemical extractions. Finally, the third unit considers the application of chromatography to the separation and the analysis of complex mixtures.


Your final grade is determined using the following percentages:

Letter grades are assigned using the following scale:

A (>92) A- (92-90)
B+ (89-87) B (86-83) B- (82-80)
C+ (79-77) C (76-73) C- (72-70)
D+ (69-67) D (66-63) D- (62-60)
F (<60)

Final averages are not rounded; to earn a grade of B instead of a grade of B-, for example, you need a final average of ≥ 83.0. These ranges are fixed with the following caveat:

Office Hours

Feel free to stop by my office (Julian 364) without an appointment at any of these times:

If you wish to schedule an appointment at another time, please catch me after class or lab, send me an email, or drop by my office.

Due Dates

Because I value thoughtful, well-written, and well-reasoned work more than absolute deadlines, the due dates for assignments allow for some flexiblity. Unless otherwise specified, there is no penalty for turning in an assignment within 24 hours of its deadline. In addition, for up to two assigments you may request an additional extension of 48 hours (for a total extension of 72 hours); you must inform me that you are using one of your additional 48-hour extensions in advance of the assignment's original due date.


A textbook is a poor substitute for the active learning that takes place in classroom. Although attendance for class sessions is not required, I encourage you to take advantage of our time together by engaging fully with the material and with your classmates during class. Whether you miss class for a legitimate reason or simply need a day off, it is your responsibility to know and to understand the material covered that day. Ask a classmate for a copy of his or her notes and visit the course website for copies of any handouts. Please note that we cannot take class time to review material for students who miss class.

Selected DePauw University Academic Policies

Academic Integrity

Although you may make frequent use of external resources (e.g. the internet, the library, other students) when an completing assignment it is important that the work you submit represents your understanding of the assignment and your work. A failure to do so is unethical and a serious breach of academic integrity. Be sure to review DePauw's guidelines for academic integrity, which are included in the Student Handbook; in particular, review the examples of plagiarism. Although often unintentional, plagiarism nevertheless is a serious violation and can result in a significant reduction in your grade for an assignment or for the course.

Be sure to consult with me if you are unsure about any issue concerning academic integrity.

Disability Services

It is the policy and practice of DePauw University to provide reasonable accommodations for students with properly documented disabilities. Written notification from Student Disability Services is required. If you are eligible to receive an accommodation and would like to request it for this course, please contact Student Disability Services. Allow one week advance notice to ensure enough time for reasonable accommodations to be made. Otherwise, it is not guaranteed that the accommodation can be provided on a timely basis. Accommodations are not retroactive. Students who have questions about Student Disability Services or who have, or think they may have, a disability (psychiatric, attentional, learning, vision, hearing, physical, medical, etc.) are invited to contact Student Disability Services for a confidential discussion in Union Building Suite 200 or by phone at 658-6267.

Religious Accomodations

DePauw accommodates students who are adherents of a religious tradition and wish to fulfill obligations of that religious tradition on holy days. Students are expected to notify their instructors of their intent to fulfill the obligations of their religious tradition well in advance of these days. For the sake of this policy, “holy days” are defined as periods of time in which either activities required by normal class participation are prohibited by a religious tradition, or a special worship obligation is required by a religious tradition.