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Chemistry

Message from the Chair

Welcome to the Chemistry Department at West Virginia State University.  The Department offers three B.S. Chemistry degree options; ACS Certified, Applied Chemistry, and Pre-Medical/Pre-Pharmacy Science.  The B.S. Chemistry ACS Certified option is approved by the Committee on Professional Training of the American Chemical Society (ACS).  Depending on the option chosen, students are prepared for graduate studies in chemistry, or immediate employment in industry, or entry into professional schools such as those of medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy.

 
Our faculty are dedicated to excellence in teaching, mentoring, research, and service.  Because of our relatively small class sizes, students get to know their professors and their peers fostering a student-centered learning environment.  Our students gain hands-on experience with modern instrumentation, and conduct research under the guidance of faculty mentors.  Research students often present the results of their work at local, regional, and national meetings.  We have a nationally award-winning ACS Student Affiliate Chapter which is very active in promoting science in local schools, and in community service.

Course Offerings & Descriptions

Fall and Spring Semester

  • Consumer Chemistry (General Education) - CHEM 100
  • General Chemistry I – CHEM 105
  • General Chemistry I lab - CHEM 107
  • General Chemistry II - CHEM 106
  • General Chemistry II lab -CHEM 108
  • Introductory to Environmental Chemistry (General Education) - CHEM 132
  • Organic Chemistry I - CHEM 205
  • Organic Chemistry I lab- CHEM 207
  • Organic Chemistry II - CHEM 206
  • Organic Chemistry II lab - CHEM 208

Fall Semester Only

  • Health Science General Chemistry -CHEM 101
  • Analytical Chemistry - CHEM 211
  • Physical Chemistry I - CHEM 301
  • Physical Chemistry I Lab – CHEM 303
  • Introduction to Polymer Science – CHEM 305
  • Environmental Chemistry – CHEM 312/512
  • Junior Seminar - CHEM 350
  • Environmental Toxicology - CHEM 356
  • Inorganic Chemistry - CHEM 411
  • Inorganic Chemistry Lab - CHEM 413
  • Advanced Organic – CHEM 425/525

Spring Semester Only

  • Elementary Organic and Biochemistry - CHEM 201
  • Computer Chemistry - CHEM 202
  • Physical Chemistry II - CHEM 302
  • Physical Chemistry II Lab - CHEM 304
  • Biochemistry - CHEM 331
  • Biochemistry lab - CHEM 333
  • Green Chemistry - CHEM 357
  • Instrumental - CHEM 416
  • Instrumental lab - CHEM 418
  • Spectroscopic Methods - CHEM 429
  • Senior Seminar - CHEM 450
Updated 03/11/2016

CHEMISTRY COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

CHEM 100. Consumer Chemistry (3 credit hours)

A study of the basic rules of elements and their compounds is enough for an appreciation of the beauty of consumer chemistry. The course will involve a close look into the food we eat, the fuel we burn and the products we use as health and beauty aids. Includes laboratory work.
 

CHEM 100H. Consumer Chemistry (for Honors Students) (3 credit hours)

An accelerated study of the basic rules of elements and their compounds is enough for an appreciation of the beauty of consumer chemistry. The course will involve a close look into the food we eat, the fuel we burn and the products we use as health and beauty aids. Includes laboratory work.


CHEM 101. Health Science General Chemistry (4 credit hours)

This course provides an introduction to general chemistry with an emphasis on health relevance and applications. A three-hour laboratory is included each week to help with hands-on exposure to the concepts covered in the lecture portion of the courses. Prerequisite(s): Eligible for MATH 120.
 

CHEM 105. General Chemistry I (3 credit hours)

Designed for students desiring further studies in natural sciences, medicine and engineering. Contents include pertinent mathematics, periodicity of elements,stoichiometry, gas laws, energy changes, solutions, equilibria, acid-base theories and descriptive chemistry.  (High school chemistry is desirable and high school or college algebra is necessary for an understanding of the material covered in this course.) Three hours lecture and one recitation hour per week. Prerequisite(s): Concurrent MATH 120 or Math ACT of 23+.
 

CHEM 106. General Chemistry II (3 credit hours)

A continuation of Chemistry 105. Contents include chemical equilibria, atomic and electronic structure of atoms, chemical bonding, oxidation-reduction reactions and descriptive chemistry. Three hours lecture and one recitation hour per week. Prerequisite(s): C in CHEM 105; C in MATH 120 or Math ACT 23+.
 

CHEM 107. General Chemistry Laboratory I (2 credit hours)

An introduction to the principles of experimentation and laboratory techniques as applied to the experimental science of chemistry. Three hours per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 105 or current enrollment in CHEM 105.
 

CHEM 108. General Chemistry Laboratory II (2 credit hours)

A continuation of CHEM 107. Three hours per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 105, 106 and 107 (enrollment in CHEM 106 may be concurrent).


CHEM 132.  Introductory to Environmental Chemistry (3 CREDIT HOURS) 
Environmental chemistry is the study and appreciation of the phenomena in the environment.  In this course we look at various environmental issues from the viewpoint of a chemist but also look at the political implications as well.  The study of various environmental factors and pollutants in our water, soil, and air and their effects on the planet.  The understanding in how our environment works with the addition of anthropogenic materials.

CHEM 201. Elementary Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry (4 credit hours)

A continuation of CHEM 101, which covers organic chemistry and biochemistry with an emphasis on health relevance and applications. The laboratory experience of two hours each week will help illustrate the principles and techniques used in organic chemistry and biochemistry. Prerequisite(s): C in CHEM 101 or CHEM 105.


CHEM 202. Computer Chemistry (2 credit hours)

This course is designed to provide exposure to the use of selected computer programs that are often used by modern chemists. These include programs for drawing chemical structures, programs for molecular mechanics calculations, spreadsheet programs for doing various types of repetitive chemical calculations, spectral simulation programs, and programs for technical computing and higher-level math. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 106; CHEM 205 or concurrent.


CHEM 205. Organic Chemistry I (3 credit hours)

The study of aliphatic compounds with special emphasis on the mechanism of their reactions. Modern nomenclature and use of spectroscopic methods in organic chemistry are discussed throughout the course. Designed for science majors. Three hour lecture and one recitation hour per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 106.


CHEM 206. Organic Chemistry II (3 credit hours)

A continuation of Chemistry 205. The chemistry of aromatic compounds and many modern methods of chemical synthesis are covered. The major classes of biological chemical compounds are discussed. Three hours lecture and one recitation hour per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 205.


CHEM 207. Organic Chemistry Laboratory I (2 credit hours)

An introduction to the fundamental laboratory techniques used in organic chemistry. Four hours per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 108 and CHEM 205 (enrollment in CHEM 205 may be concurrent).

CHEM 208. Organic Chemistry Laboratory II (2 credit hours)

A continuation of CHEM 207 with an emphasis on learning the basic methods used in preparing organic compounds and an introduction to qualitative organic chemistry. Four hours per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 205, 206 and 207 (enrollment in CHEM 206 may be concurrent).

CHEM 211. Introductory Analytical Chemistry (4 credit hours)

Volumetric, gravimetric, spectrophotometric and electrochemical methods of analysis. Two hours lecture and four hours lab. Prerequisite(s): C in CHEM 106, 108 and MATH 120; concurrent enrollment in MATH 102 or MATH 121.

CHEM 301. Physical Chemistry I (3 credit hours)

Fundamental principles and laws of chemistry, including thermodynamics, statistical mechanics and chemical kinetics. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 106, 202, 206,208, MATH 206, and PHYS 201 or 231.
 

CHEM 302. Physical Chemistry II (3 credit hours)

Statistical mechanics, electrochemistry, quantum mechanics, molecular structure and spectroscopy. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 301, MATH 207 and PHYS 202 or 232.
 

CHEM 303. Physical Chemistry Laboratory I (2 credit hours)

Three class hours per week the course emphasizes both the experimental techniques and the theoretical concepts behind the experiments. The experiments include those involving the principles of chemical thermodynamics, introductory statistical thermodynamics and chemical kinetics. Both wet and dry experiments will be performed. The latter help explain important concepts such as probability, entropy and free energy, and make use of Excel and Mathematics. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 301 or concurrently.

CHEM 304. Physical Chemistry Laboratory II (2 credit hours)

Three class hours per week the course emphasizes both the experimental techniques and the theoretical concepts behind the experiments. The experiments include those involving the principles of quantum chemistry and spectroscopy. Both wet and dry experiments will be performed. The latter help explain important concepts such as observables, precise and average value properties, wave functions and eigenvalues and make use of mathematics and Excel. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 302 or concurrent.
 

CHEM 305. Introduction to Polymer Science (4 Credit hours)

Polymer science is one of the most applicable fields to society. Very few consumer goods are brought to the market without the help of polymers at some point. This is an introduction to polymer science. It provides an overview of the synthesis, structure, and characterization of polymers.  Preq  CHEM 206


CHEM 312. Environmental Chemistry (3 credit hours)

Environmental chemistry is the study of the chemical phenomena in the environment. In this course, the environmental problems are discussed from the viewpoint of the chemist. The study of the various environmental factors and pollutants in our water, soil and air and their effects on life and the environment are investigated. Available solutions for control and reduction of these pollutants are discussed. Three class hours per week. Prerequisite(s):

CHEM 206 or permission of instructor.


CHEM 331. Biochemistry (3 credit hours)

The goal of this course is to teach the principles of chemical reactions in biological systems. Topics include: protein chemistry, enzymology, genetic diseases,bioenergetics/respiration, metabolism and nucleic acid chemistry. Wherever possible applications of biochemistry to health and environment will be emphasized. It is recommended that CHEM 333 be taken concurrently. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206.

CHEM 333. Biochemistry Laboratory (2 credit hours)

The purpose of this course is to teach the principles and techniques used in modern biochemistry. Protein isolation and characterization, enzyme kinetics, carbohydrate chemistry and nucleic acid chemistry will be covered. Experimental methods include electrophoresis, gas chromatography/ mass spectrometry, high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and spectrometry. Three class hours per week. Pre or co-requisite: CHEM 331.

CHEM 350. Junior Seminar (1 credit hour)

An introduction to chemical literature, including how to search topics and prepare presentations based on those searches. Both written and oral communication skills will be developed. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206.


CHEM 356. Environmental Toxicology (3 credit hours)

This course is designed with the future industrial chemist in mind. The main focus is the discovery of how the chemicals we make today affect our health tomorrow. Topics to be discussed include the history of toxicology, absorption, distribution and excretion of toxicants, and nonorganic directed toxicity and target organ toxicity. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206.


CHEM 357. Green Chemistry (3 credit hours)

Green chemistry or environmentally benign chemistry is the design of chemical products and processes that reduce or eliminate the use and generation of hazardous substances.  The course will cover the history of science and its effect on the environment and the global population. Concepts and applications of green chemistry will be discussed and compared to other traditional methods. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206


CHEM 411. Inorganic Chemistry (3 credit hours)

A systematic study of the principles of structure and reactivity of the chemical elements and their compounds. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 301 or concurrent.


CHEM 413. Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory (2 credit hours)

The synthesis and characterizations of inorganic compounds. Three hours per week. Take concurrently with CHEM 411.


CHEM 416. Instrumental Analysis (3 credit hours)

Theoretical aspects of instrumental methods of chemical and structural analysis. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 211 and CHEM 301.


CHEM 418. Instrumental Analysis Laboratory (2 credit hours)

Characterization and analysis of materials using infrared, atomic absorption, UV-visible and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy; gas and high-performance liquid chromatography; and electroanalytical chemistry. Three class hours per week. Prerequisite(s): Concurrent enrollment in CHEM 416.
 

CHEM 420. Undergraduate Library Research (1 credit hour)

An introduction to library research techniques and the chemistry literature. Staff assigns a topic and supervises the project. Prerequisite(s): Permission of chair and instructor.
 

CHEM 425. Advanced Organic Chemistry (3 credit hours)

A study of organic reactions applied to organic synthesis.  This course reviews functional groups, methods for forming carbon-carbon bonds, and surveys the more important reagents for functional grout transformations. Three class hours per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206 and 301.
 

CHEM 429. Spectroscopic Methods (3 credit hours)

The use of UV, IR, NMR and mass spectroscopy for investigating molecular structures. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206 and CHEM 301.

CHEM 450. Senior Seminar (1 credit hour)

Oral presentation of topics of current chemical interest, including the presentation of students’ research results. This course should be taken in the senior year. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 350 and permission of the department chair.
 

CHEM 459. Inquiry-Based Research for Education Majors (1 credit hour)

In this individualized, lab-based course, teacher education candidates will investigate, design and implement an inquiry/research project and communicate the results.  Prerequisite(s): Permission of the department chair.
 

CHEM 460. Directed Student Research (1 credit hour)

Designed for the chemistry student who desires to do research on a special chemical project in his/her junior or senior year. Prerequisite(s): Permission of the department chair.
 

CHEM 461. Directed Student Research (2 credit hours)

Designed for the chemistry student who desires to do research on a special chemical project in his/her junior or senior year. Prerequisite(s): Permission of the department chair.
 

CHEM 462. Directed Student Research (3 credit hours)

Designed for the chemistry student who desires to do research on a special chemical project in his/her junior or senior year. Prerequisite(s): Permission of the department chair.
 

Chemistry Graduate Course Descriptions

CHEM 512. Environmental Chemistry (3 credit hours)

Environmental chemistry is the study of the chemical phenomena in the environment. In this course, the environmental problems are discussed from the viewpoint of the chemist. The study of the various environmental factors and pollutants in our water, soil and air and their effects on life and the environment are investigated. Available solutions for control and reduction of these pollutants are discussed. Three class hours per week. Prerequisite(s):

CHEM 206 or permission of instructor; graduate status.


CHEM 525. Advanced Organic Chemistry (3 credit hours)
A study of organic reactions applied to organic synthesis.  This course reviews functional groups, methods for forming carbon-carbon bonds and surveys the more important reagents for functional group transformations. Three class hours per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206 and 302 or permission of instructor; graduate status.


CHEM 531. Biochemistry (3 credit hours)

The goal of this course is to teach the principles of chemical reactions in biological systems. Topics include: protein chemistry, enzymology, genetic diseases, bioenergetics/respiration, metabolism and nucleic acid chemistry. Wherever possible, applications of biochemistry to health and environment will be emphasized. It is recommended that Chemistry 533 be taken concurrently. Three class hours per week. Prerequisite(s): CHEM 206.


CHEM 533. Biochemistry Laboratory (2 credit hours)

The purpose of this course is to teach the principles and techniques used in modern biochemistry. Protein isolation and characterization, enzyme kinetics, carbohydrate chemistry and nucleic acid chemistry will be covered.  Experimental methods include electrophoresis, gas chromatography/ mass  spectrometry, high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and spectrometry. Three class hours per week. Pre or co-requisite: CHEM 531

Curriculum

The Chemistry Department at WVSU offers the following program:

  • 4-year Bachelor of Science Degree Program

The 4-year BS Program offers the following 3 options.

Option A - ACS Certified

  • Follows the guidelines of the ACS Committee on Professional Training
  • Provides the necessary background for admission to graduate programs in chemistry
  • Provides a superior background for students wishing to pursue a career in the chemical industry
  • Curriculum includes directed research with a chosen faculty member
Option B - Applied Chemistry
  • Provides background for students interested in many scientific fields
  • Prepares the students for entry-level chemistry positions
 Option C - Pre-Medical/Pre-Pharmacy
  • Provides the students with a strong background in chemistry and biology
  • Prepares the students for admission to medical and/or pharmacy school
  • Prepares the students for pursuing medical and health-related careers
Distinguished Lecture Series



Past Presenters
 

Dr. Craig Barnes (University of Tennessee) - The Design, Synthesis and Reactivity of Nanostructured Metal Oxide Catalysts – Where Materials Science meets Catalysis 

Dr. Samarjit Patnaik (NIH Chemical Genomics Center) - Organic Synthesis and Drug Discovery 

Dr. Tom Magliery (Ohio State University) - Protein-protein interactions and conformations and the uses they have in medical therapy

Jason Christopher Hodges (West Virginia State Police Forensic Lab)

Dr. David Seidler (Charleston Area Medical Clinic)

Dr. Mary Kirchhoff (Director of Education, American Chemical Society) - Green Chemistry: Theory and Practice, What are the alternatives to toxic chemicals?  

Dr. Seth Horne (University of Pittsburg) - Proteins as Play-doh: Changing the Chemical Connectivity of Biomolecules to Make New Material and Medicines 

Dr. Vagner Benedito (West Virginia University) - Membrane transporters in the model legume Medicago truncatula: Genomic perspectives on symbiotic nitrogen fixation

Dr. John C Warner (President and Chief Technology Officer, Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry and President, THe Beyond Benign Foundation) - Green Chemistry: New Eyes and New Ideas in Science

Dr. Dana Bixler (Director of Medical Epidemiology) - Life after Undergraduate Studies, Epidemiology as a Career Option

Dr. Charles Clements (Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine) - What is Medical School
and How do I Prepare for it?


Dr. James Hodge (Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute) -A Brave New World: Vaccines for Therapy of Cancer

Dr. Silas Cook (Indiana University) - Generating an Efficient Total Synthesis for Englerin A

Dr. Noelle Umback (NYC Chief Medical Examiner's Department of Forensic Biology) - September 11th World Trade Attacks

Zachary Smith (Indiana University) - Utilizing Resting Egg Banks of the Water Flea, Daphnia pulex, to Study the Impacts of Metal Stress on Genome Architecture.
 

Resources/Links
Scholarships and Educational Opportunities

RICHARD and SHIRLEY WEESE CHEMISTRY SCHOLARSHIP:  
AVAILABLE TO AWARD:
 up to a $1000.00 per awardee
Established by Richard Weese in the loving memory of his late wife Shirley and in grateful of appreciation to the professors who mentored him when he was student at West Virginia State University (then College).  After graduating from STATE, Richard went on to have a successful career as a research & development scientist in the chemical industry.  Many of Richad's accomplishments in chemical industry are still being used today in the chemical industry.   Recipient must be a full-time sophomore, junior or senior chemistry major, and must be in good standing academic standing with the university.  The student must also demonstrate a desire for a career in the field of chemistry. 
RECOMMENDATIONS ACCEPTED FROM:   CHAIR - Chemistry Department


HACH SCIENTIFIC FOUNDATION CHEMISTRY:  AVAILABLE TO AWARD:  $12,000.00
Established by the Hach Scientific Foundation of Colorado.  The recipient must be a full-time undergraduate chemistry major preparing to become a teacher.  The recipient must maintain a 3.0 GPA.  The award of up to $6,000 per academic year may continue for eight semesters if the scholarship standards are met.
AMOUNT TO AWARD EACH SEMESTER: $3000.00  
RECOMMENDATIONS ACCEPTED FROM:   CHAIR - Chemistry Department

 

DR. BASUDEB DASSARMA SCHOLARSHIP  Available to award $500.00
Established to honor Dr. Basudeb DasSarma by an anonymous friend.  The candidate must be a full-time chemistry major, a resident in the areas immediately surrounding the College (i.e., Institute, Dunbar, Nitro, and Cross Lanes).  Recipient must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5, demonstrate financial need, and have at least two (2) letters of reference from high school instructors, counselors, or principal.  Can be extended for up to eight semesters.  Recommended by the Chemistry Department. Award:  tuition, fees, and/or books.
AMOUNT TO AWARD EACH SEMESTER: $250.00
RECOMMENDATION ACCEPTED FROM: Chair – Chemistry Department
                                          
 

DR. JOHN F. HASKIN ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP:  AVAILABLE TO AWARD:  $3000.00
Established by the widow and children of Dr. John F. Haskin, a respected research chemist.  Recipient must be a full-time junior or senior chemistry major, must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.25, and be recommended by the Chemistry Department.  Scholarship is renewable, contingent on maintaining a 3.25 GPA.  Award:  $500 per semester
AMOUNT TO AWARD EACH SEMESTER:    $500.00 
RECOMMENDATIONS ACCEPTED FROM:   Chair – Chemistry Department
 

Faculty & Staff

Ms. Glenna
Ms. Glenna Curry
Administrative Secretary, Sr.
Phone: (304) 766-3102
gcurry4@wvstateu.edu
Dr. Micheal
Dr. Micheal Fultz
Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Phone: (304) 766-3106
mfultz@wvstateu.edu
Ms. ElizabethKeville
Ms. Elizabeth Keville
Academic Laboratory Manager
Phone: (304) 766-3115
ekeville@wvstateu.edu
Dr. SharonMolnar
Dr. Sharon Molnar
Inorganic Chemistry
Phone: (304) 766-3042
molnars@wvstateu.edu
Mr. Anthony
Mr. Anthony Moncrief
Analytical Chemistry
Phone: (304) 766-3104
moncrief@wvstateu.edu
Dr. Sundar
Dr. Sundar Naga
Physical Chemistry
Phone: (304) 766-5756
naga@wvstateu.edu
Dr. Ernest
Dr. Ernest Sekabunga
Inorganic Chemistry (Chair)
Phone: (304) 766-5132
sekabuej@wvstateu.edu
student conducting a chmistry experiment
Dr. Ernest
Dr. Ernest Sekabunga
Inorganic Chemistry (Chair)
Room H329
Phone: (304) 766-5132
sekabuej@wvstateu.edu
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