A Comparison of Some of BCCC'S Chemistry Courses

This comparison will begin by describing  Chemistry-I and Chemistry-II (CHEM 121 & CHEM 122). The other courses will then be compared to Chemistry-I and Chemistry-II (Chem I & II).

Chem I and II

Chem I and II make up the traditional, first year, college chemistry course for science, and engineering majors. Students are expected to have mastered college algebra and high school chemistry. Chem I & II cover a broad range of topics including stoichiometry, atomic and molecular structure, acids and bases, oxidation and reduction, the ideal gas law, thermochemistry, thermodynamics, equilibria, kinetics, solutions, and electrochemistry. Those topics are covered in considerable depth. The focus is on the use of the concepts, laws, principles, and theories to solve problems. There is a very strong math component. Students must achieve a thorough understanding of the concepts and theories, and be able to use them to obtain numerical solutions to problems they have not encountered before. Prerequisites*: College Algebra (MATH 120) and a pass (score indicated by a "1")  in the Chemistry Placement test.

Preparatory Chemistry

Preparatory Chemistry (CHEM 100) is specifically designed to give students who are unprepared for Chem I (as measured by the Chemistry Placement Test (score indicated by  a "0") the problem solving skills, and basic chemistry background they need to succeed in Chem I. Prep Chem has limited breadth and depth because it covers only a part of the chemistry covered in Chem I. The emphasis is on developing numerical problem solving skills. Prerequisite*: Intermediate Algebra (MATH 103); Corequisite: College Algebra (MATH 120).  This course is not expected to transfer either as a Science elective or a Chemistry elective because it is a preparatory (remedial) course. , even though some institutions will take it.  You may like to consult with your Transfer College as of their policy.

Chem A and B

Chem A (CHEM 101) is a broad survey course with very little depth. It covers a wider range of topics than is covered in Chem I and II together, and in only 1 semester. The goal is to give students some of the basic vocabulary of chemistry and an idea of some of the basic concepts and principles. The approach is largely qualitative. There is little numerical problem solving. This course is accepted as a Science elective in non-science programs, and is a Science elective in the college's core curriculum. Prerequisite*: MATH 095 or High School Algebra. This is the course required by Nursing Students at Bucks County Community College.

Chem B (CHEM 102) covers some of the chemical principles already covered in Chem A (for example, stoichiometry, equilibria, and kinetics), but this time in greater depth and in a more mathematical way. In addition, the study of Organic and Biochemistry is expanded and the subjects of polymer and industrial chemistry are introduced. Prerequisite*: CHEM 101 or CHEM 121.

Organic I and II

Organic I and II (CHEM 221 & 222) make up the traditional, second year college chemistry course for science and engineering majors. The emphasis is on the chemistry of carbon containing compounds. As in Chem I & II, the focus of the course is on the use of the concepts and principles to solve practical problems. There is less emphasis on the solution of numerical problems, and more emphasis on the use of the principles and concepts of organic chemistry to identify compounds, explain and predict the course of reactions and develop schemes for the synthesis of compounds. Prerequisite*: CHEM 122 or CHEM 220, or CHEM 101 and CHEM 102 with a grade of B or better.

All of these courses involve a laboratory component which increases in complexity as the course number increases.