Should a physics major take general chemistry?

  • #1
astroman707
61
5
I’ve already taken intro chemistry with a lab, and general chemistry 1. Unlike most universities, my college doesn’t require chemistry for physics majors. Should I take general chemistry 2? Would it really benefit me, or should I spend my time elsewhere?
Edit: I’m referring to the standard general chemistry curriculum used in the U.S.
 
Last edited:

Answers and Replies

  • #3
astroman707
61
5
Can you mention the syllabus for general chemistry 2?
I actually don’t know. It’s the standard general chemistry curriculum thats used in the U.S. It’s often a prerequisite for organic chemistry and physical chemistry.
 
  • #5
astroman707
61
5
What topics are covered in general chemistry 1?
Lewis structures, molecular orbital theory, light and matter, reactions, stoichiometry, ideal gases/real gases, phases, molecular shapes/VSEPR theory, polarity of molecules, intermolecular forces, acids and bases.
 
  • #6
symbolipoint
Homework Helper
Education Advisor
Gold Member
6,820
1,534
I’ve already taken intro chemistry with a lab, and general chemistry 1. Unlike most universities, my college doesn’t require chemistry for physics majors. Should I take general chemistry 2? Would it really benefit me, or should I spend my time elsewhere?
Edit: I’m referring to the standard general chemistry curriculum used in the U.S.
YES.
 
  • #7
PCJJSBS
34
12
If you like it, take it. It will be interesting... helpful may be a stretch. If you don't it definitely wont be detrimental in any way.
 
  • #8
CrysPhys
Education Advisor
1,083
753
I’ve already taken intro chemistry with a lab, and general chemistry 1. Unlike most universities, my college doesn’t require chemistry for physics majors. Should I take general chemistry 2? Would it really benefit me, or should I spend my time elsewhere?
Edit: I’m referring to the standard general chemistry curriculum used in the U.S.
<<Emphasis added>> Your question needs to be placed within the context of where your interests lie and what else you could take instead of Gen Chem 2. For example, if you were interested in pursuing condensed matter/solid-state/materials physics, more chem would be useful. But you just posted another thread in which you stated you want to pursue computational astrophysics. In which case, something else would probably be more useful.
 
  • Like
Likes Wrichik Basu
  • #9
Dr. Courtney
Education Advisor
Insights Author
Gold Member
3,334
2,516
It is required of a Physics major in many schools. But there may be good reason why it is not at your institution. Perhaps there is enough overlap between the content of General Chemistry 2 and other courses, that it is not needed.

Of course, there may be some specialties within Physics where taking it would still be advisable.
 
  • #10
Marisa5
54
42
The more time you can spend working in a lab the better, especially if it has high standards for writing reports. Writing skills are really lacking among college students these days so a gen chem lab is a good way to build that skill. Doing experiments is good too just for refining your experimental skills as well. You should sign up for it.
 
  • Like
Likes symbolipoint
  • #11
symbolipoint
Homework Helper
Education Advisor
Gold Member
6,820
1,534
The more time you can spend working in a lab the better, especially if it has high standards for writing reports. Writing skills are really lacking among college students these days so a gen chem lab is a good way to build that skill. Doing experiments is good too just for refining your experimental skills as well. You should sign up for it.
I half-way agree with Marisa5. For sure learning to write good formal lab reports is important, but the General Chemistry course is not likely to depend on the student learning to write these. Lab reports in General Chemistry are more likely to be answering some technical questions and displaying data and computing results or determining results and may require other requested comments from the student. Some Chem courses beyond General Chemistry will require formal lab reports with abstract, introduction discussion, experimental description section including list of materials and equipment, discussion of results, data and charts and graphs, and conclusion sections.

Physics undergraduates would not ordinarily need more than one year of General Chemistry, but in any case, good writing skills and experience would come from other than Chemistry courses for them(the Phys students).
 

Suggested for: Should a physics major take general chemistry?

  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
392
Replies
2
Views
325
Replies
6
Views
449
  • Last Post
Replies
10
Views
815
  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
80
  • Last Post
Replies
6
Views
375
Replies
13
Views
628
Replies
32
Views
4K
  • Last Post
2
Replies
40
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
8
Views
468
Top