Principles and Methods of Chemistry

Name: Principles and Methods of Chemistry
Code: QUI13539L
Duration: 15 weeks/156 hours
Scientific Area: Chemistry

Teaching languages: Portuguese, English
Languages of tutoring support: Portuguese, English
Regime de Frequência: Presencial

Sustainable Development Goals

Learning Goals

The general objective of this curricular unit is to provide the students with solid knowledge of the fundamentals of Chemistry, aiming at levelling student preparation, as required for subsequent curricular units, in a group of students of diverse background. Specifically, it is envisaged that the students acquire and consolidate knowledge about the structure of matter and its transformations, thermodynamics, chemical equilibrium, electrochemistry and chemical kinetics.
At the end of the curricular unit the students should be able to: understand and predict properties of matter, relating with chemical bonding and intermolecular forces; identify and interpret qualitatively chemical reactions and factors that affect the equilibrium; solve quantitative problems; distinguish between spontaneity, extension and rate of chemical reactions; recognize the application of Chemistry, and the relevance of acquired knowledge, in everyday situations.


Atomic theory. Atomic models. Quantum theory and electronic structure of atoms. Periodic relations between the elements. Basic concepts of chemical bonding. Ionic bonding. Fajans rules. Covalent bonding (Lewis structures, Valence Shell Electron Pair Repulsion model, Valence Bond theory, Molecular Orbital theory). Molecular interactions. States of aggregation. Gas equations. Perfect gas mixtures. Chemical thermodynamics. Phase equilibrium. Properties of solutions. General aspects of chemical equilibrium in ideal systems. Acid-base, solubility, complexation and oxidation-reduction equilibria. Electrochemistry. Chemical kinetics.

Teaching Methods

Teaching of the programmed course content is carried out in theoretical, theoretical-practical and practical laboratory classes. In the theoretical classes subjects are presented, and the active participation of the students is encouraged. At the beginning of the semester the students are given exercises exemplifying the theoretical contents and which are explained in the theoretical-practical and, if needed, in some theoretical classes. In the practical classes, laboratory work is carried out which is directly related to course modules. Evaluation of acquired knowledge is carried out by way of written tests (T) and elements of practical evaluation (NP) with the final mark given by 0.7T+0.3P. The T mark is the average of the marks obtained in tests carried out during the semester or the mark obtained in final exam, and the students can choose between tests or exam. The P mark is based on evaluation (individual) of the student performance during the classes and the evaluation of reports