Course Title: Environmental Chemistry 1A

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Environmental Chemistry 1A

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 1 2007,
Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2013,
Sem 1 2014,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 1 2017


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 2 2016

Course Coordinator: Dr Bradley Clarke

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3358

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 3.2.19

Course Coordinator Availability: Mon-Fri

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

This is an introductory, enabling course requiring no formal prerequisites.

However, if you have not done VCE Chemistry, you will probably need to put in more hours than someone who has.

Course Description

This Course

  • will introduce you to the principles and factual basis of chemistry in an environmental context
  • will enable you to develop and practice independent learning skills
  • give you an appreciation of scientific methodology and enable you to develop those problem-solving and critical-thinking skils necessary to analyse and discuss chemical and physical phenomena in the environment.

During this Course you will study the following topics:

  • atomic structure and bonding
  • chemical change
  • chemical periodicity
  • quantitiation
  • introductory chemistry relating to the hydrosphere, atmosphere, lithosphere and biosphere
  • language and concepts of organic chemistry

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

At the conclusion of the Course, you will have demonstrated:

  • that you understand and can apply fundamental concepts of Chemistry
  • technical competence in basic Chemistry; specifically, that you can collect, accurately record, interpret and draw conclusions from scientific data
  • that you can plan a chemical investigation including developing a testable hypothesis
  • that you can work effectively, responsibly and safely in an individual or team context
  • that you are developing as an independent and self-directed learner

This course contributes to the development of the following Program Learning Outcomes at AQF level 7

  • PLO 3 understanding science, demonstrate a coherent understanding of environmental science
  • PLO 2 scientific knowledge, exhibt depth and breadth of environmental science knowledge
  • PLO 3 inquiry and problem solving, critically analyse and solve problems in environmental science
  • PLO 4 communication, be an effective communicator of environmental science
  • PLO 5 personal and professional responsibility, be accountable for individual learning and scientific work in environmental science

This course contributes to the following Program Learning |Outcomes at AQF level 9

  • PLO 1.1 a body knowledge that includes the understanding of recent developments in both the understanding of environmental processes and the technological advance in measurement techniques, remediation processes and pollution control
  • PLO 1.2 knowledge of teh research principles and methods applicable to studying the chemical, biological and physical processes occurrinf in the environment
  • PLO 2.4 communication and technnical research skills to enable you to justify and interpret theoretical propositions, methodologies, conclusions and professional decisions to specialist and non specialist audiences
  • PLO 3.4 to plan and execute a substantial environmental research based project.

Overview of Learning Activities

As part of this Course, you

  • will attend lectures in which syllabus material will be presented and explained and the topic will be illustrated with demonstrations and examples. During lectures you will be encouraged to participate actively by working through examples and problems and using interactive technologies such as "clickers" or web-based software and smart phones.
  • may choose to attend a range of tutorials and help sessions (Tuesday tutorial run by the Course Coordinator, SLC Drop-In Learning Centre which has Chemistry specialists in attendance and PASS (Peer-assisted study sessions)
  • will routinely attend and participate in weekly Workshop sessions which include both tutorial and laboratory work
  • will regularly access the extensive range of on-line learning resources via Canvas and, to a lesser extent, Weblearn.
  • will learn to prepare ahead and plan your activities before entering a laboratory.

Overview of Learning Resources

The Learning Resources available to you are many and varied.

They include:

  • your lecturers
  • recommended textbooks
    • Silberberg, M., "Chemistry, The Molecular Nature of Matter and Change" (McGraw-Hill)
    • McMurry, J., "Organic Chemistry" (Brookes-Cole)
    • Aylward, G. and Findlay, F., "SI Chemical Data" (Wiley)
  • printed class notes and the associated files
  • your Workshop demonstrators and your Workshop Manual
  • Canvas (which contains interactive tutorials, videos and games)
  • the Web!
  • staff at the Student Learning Centre (12.4.20) and your PASS (peer-assisted-study-sessions) tutors
  • your colleagues (working together on a problem can be really useful)

Overview of Assessment

End-of-semester Exam

Workshop Assessment  (which includes lab reports, small assignments, pre-lab exercises)
The Workshop assessment is a Hurdle component; this which means that you must pass this section (i.e. obtain half the maximum possible marks) to obtain a Pass in this Course

Work Requirements - assignments and online tests