63708 - General and Inorganic Chemistry with Laboratory

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Good health and well-being Quality education Affordable and clean energy Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student possesses the basic knowledge of chemistry and the scientific method, learned via significant examples and quantitative applications of the natural laws and the interpretative models. Moreover, the student gains the fundamental chemical principles concerning the atomic structure, the periodic table, the properties of the chemical elements, the chemical bond, the molecules and their geometries, the aggregation state of the matter. The student will be able to understand a chemical reaction, the balance of matter and energy, the homogeneous and heterogeneous chemical equilibria, the spontaneity of chemical reactions and their kinetics, as well as the use of chemical energy in order to produce electrical work. Moreover, students will gain an understanding and a knowledge of the fundamental concepts of stoichiometry and practical chemistry, via numerical exercises and laboratory sessions. They will acquire the skills necessary to work in a chemical laboratory and be able to correlate their experimental data with chemical reactivity.

Course contents

Prerequisites: Knowledge of the elementary real functions: power functions, roots, exponential and logarithm. Solving algebraic equations. Knowledge of the main physical quantities, their mutual relationships and main unit measurements.

Course contents

1- Brief introduction to atomic structure- Atomic mass- Introduction to chemical forces and bonds- Molecules- Molecular, covalent, metallic and ionic solids- Molecular mass- Chemical reactions and conservation of mass- Elemental analysis- Nomenclature- Heat of reaction and conservation of energy 2- The gaseous state – Ideal gases - The molecular kinetic theory - Interpretation of pressure and temperature of a gas- Mixtures of gases and Dalton law of partial pressures- Graham law of diffusion and applications- Real gases and Van der Waals equation. 3- Homogeneous chemical equilibrium- Definitions of concentration- Law of Guldberg-Waage- Equilibrium constants and their use- Heterogeneous equilibrium- The le Chatelier principle 4- Equilibria in solution- Ionic product of water- pH- Definitions of acids and bases- Solutions of strong acids and bases and their pH- Solutions of weak acids and bases and their pH- Hydrolysis of salts and pH- Buffered solutions and titration. 5- Solubility- Ionic salts- Solubility product and effect of common ions and pH. 6- Thermochemistry- Introduction to chemical thermodynamic- Enthalpy and bond energy- Entropy and disorder- Free energy and spontaneity of chemical reactions- Free energy and equilibrium constants- Effect of temperature on equilibrium constants. 7- Electrochemistry: Chemical energy and electrical work- Electrochemical cells- Standard potentials- Latimer diagrams- Nernst equation- 8- Changes of state and state diagrams- Properties of solutions. Azeotropes- Distillation- Colligative properties and their effect in day life. 9- Earlier atomic models and their conflict with classical physical laws and experimental data- Waves and particles- Atomic model of Schroedinger and outlines for solving the electron wave equation- Quantic numbers- Orbitals- Electronic configuration of atoms- Derivation of periodic table- Atomic properties. 10- The chemical bond in molecules according to the Lewis method- Resonance- Lewis acids and bases- Molecular geometry- VSEPR theory. 11- Molecular orbitals- Sigma and pi bonds- MO of diatomic homonuclear and heteronuclear molecules- Bond order- Electronegativity- Dipole moments- Polyatomic molecules according to MO and VB methods- Hybrid orbitals. 12- Intermolecular forces and molecular solids- Covalent solids- Allotropy and relations structure-properties- Insulators, semiconductors and conductors- The metallic bond.

The Laboratory Course will be dedicated to further specific topics such as: Safety in the chemical laboratory. SI units of measurement. Uncertainty in measurements. Significant figures. Names and formulas of inorganic compounds. The mole. Percent composition of compounds. Empirical and molecular formulae. Chemical equations and their balance. Oxidation numbers. Stoichiometric calculations based on chemical equations. Yields from chemical reactions. The limiting reactant concept. Chemical equilibrium in gas phase. Properties of solutions and their concentrations. Molar fraction. Heterogeneous equilibrium: solubility product. Ionic equilibrium. Autoionization of water. Acid and base solutions. pH. Ionization constants for weak monoprotic acids and bases. Buffers. Acid-base titration curves. Electrochemistry: standard reduction potentials; voltaic and electrolytic cells; the Nernst equation.


R.H. Petrucci, F. G. Herring. J. D. Madura, C. Bissonnette, "Chimica Generale - Principi e applicazioni moderne", Piccin Editore, Padova

D. W. Oxtoby, N. H. Nachtrieb, “Chimica Moderna”, EDISES, Napoli

B. B. Laird, "Chimica Generale", McGraw-Hill

M. S. Silberberg, CHIMICA - La natura molecolare della materia e delle sue trasformazioni, McGraw-Hill, Seconda Edizione

R. E. Dickerson, H. B. Gray, G. Haight, "Principi di Chimica", Zanichelli Editore, Bologna

K. H. Whitten, R. E. Davis, M. L. Peck, G. G. Stanley, “Chimica Generale”, Piccin, Padova.

I. Bertini, C. Luchinat, F. Mani: "Stechiometria", Ambrosiana 5° ed.

P. Michelin Lausarot, G. A. Vaglio: "Stechiometria per la Chimica Generale", Piccin

Teaching methods

Lectures integrated with numerical exercises. The course is divided in three phases. The first phase introduces the objectives of the course and gives a brief description of the nature of matter and its transformations with the aim to learn the chemical language and nomenclature. The second phase presents the chemical phenomena and their quantitative handling with the help of numerical exercises. The third phase is devoted to the comprehension and interpretation of behaviour and phenomena, object of the second phase. For what concerns in specific the Laboratory Course, it consists of lectures and numerical exercises carried out in the classroom and practical activities in the chemical laboratory. The attendance to all of the laboratory-activities is mandatory for the final exam. Experiments will be documented by students individually in their own personal lab-books and the results will be discussed together.

Assessment methods

The assessment of the course consists in a written test, followed by an oral exam. The test, which includes problems, exercises and open answers, is passed with a score equal or higher than 18/30. Access to oral exam is possible after passing the written test.There will be the option for students to take three monthly interim written tests that, if passed, will substitute for the final written exam. The Course requires to pass a single exam (written + oral) for both theory and laboratory. The final mark takes into consideration both theoretical and laboratory competences with equal (50%/50%) contributions.

Registration to the written and oral exams is required through “Alma Esami” web platform, in observation to the stated deadlines.

Teaching tools

Lectures and numerical exercises are carried out in the classroom with the help of  video-projection and blackboard. Experimental activities are planned in teaching laboratories; workplace with basic instruments and glassware is assigned to each student.

Office hours

See the website of Stefano Stagni

See the website of Carla Carfagna