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World of Chemistry

Steven S.Zumdahl, Susan L.Zumdahl, Donald J.DeCoste

Chapter 1

Chemistry: An Introduction

Educators


Problem 1

The first few paragraphs of this book asked you if you had ever wondered how and why various
things in everyday life behave the way they do. Surely there are many other such phenomena
that have intrigued you. List five of these and present them in class for discussion with your
instructor and fellow students.

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Problem 2

Chemistry is used in many professions, and a basic understanding of chemistry is of great importance. Suggest two ways that each of the following professionals might make use of chemistry in their jobs.
a. physician
b. lawyer
c. pharmacist
d. artist
e. photographer
g. nurse

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Problem 3

This section presents several ways in which our day-to-day lives have been enriched by chemistry. List three materials or processes involving chemistry that you believe have contributed to such an enrichment, and explain your choices.

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Problem 4

The text admits that there has been a “dark side” to our use of chemicals and chemical processes, and uses the example of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) to explain this. List three additional improper or unfortunate uses of chemicals or chemical processes, and explain your reasoning.

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Problem 5

This textbook provides a specific definition of chemistry: the study of the materials of which the universe is made and the transformations that these materials undergo. Obviously, such a general definition has to be very broad and nonspecific. From your point of view at this time, how would you define chemistry? In your mind, what are chemicals? What do chemists do?

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Problem 6

We use chemical reactions in our everyday lives, not just in the science laboratory. Give at least
five examples of chemical transformations that you make use of in your daily activities. Identify
the "chemical" in each of your examples, and how you recognize that a chemical change has
taken place.

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Problem 7

Discuss two situations in which you have analyzed a problem such as those presented in this section. What hypotheses did you suggest? How did you test those hypotheses?

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Problem 8

Consider the lead poisoning case given in this section. Discuss how David and Susan analyzed the situation and arrived at the theory that the lead glaze on the pottery was responsible for their
symptoms.

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Problem 9

What are the three operations involved in applying the scientific method? How does the scientific method help us understand our observations of nature?

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Problem 10

As part of a science project, you study traffic patterns in your city at an intersection in the
middle of downtown. You set up a device that counts the cars passing through this intersection
for a 24 -hour period during a weekday. The graph of hourly traffic looks like this.
a. At what time(s) does the highest number of cars pass through the intersection?
b. At what time(s) does the lowest number of cars pass through the intersection?
c. Briefly describe the trend in numbers of cars over the course of the day.
d. Provide a hypothesis explaining the trend in numbers of cars over the course of the day.
e. Provide a possible experiment that could test your hypothesis.

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Problem 11

Which of the following are quantitative observations and which are qualitative observations?
a. My waist size is 31 inches.
b. My eyes are blue.
c. My right index finger is 1/4 inch longer than my left.
d. The leaves of most trees are green in summer.
e. An apple is more than 95% water.
f. Chemistry is an easy subject.
g. My score on the last chemistry exam was 90%.

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Problem 12

What is the difference between a hypothesis and a theory? How are the two similar? How do they
differ?

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Problem 13

What is a natural law? Give examples of such laws. How does a law differ from a theory?

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Problem 14

For the following passage, label each statement as “observation,” “theory,” or “law.” Every time we let go of something heavy, it falls to the ground. For example, when an apple breaks from a branch of a tree, it falls to the ground. This happens because apples are attracted to earth.

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Problem 15

Discuss several political, social, or personal considerations that might affect a scientist’s evaluation of a theory. Give examples of how such external forces have influenced scientists in the past. Discuss methods by which such bias might be excluded from future scientific investigations.

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Problem 16

Discuss several political, social, or personal considerations that might affect a scientist’s evaluation of a theory. Give examples of how such external forces have influenced scientists in the past. Discuss methods by which such bias might be excluded from future scientific investigations.

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Problem 17

Why is the ability to solve problems important in the study of chemistry? Why is it that the method used to attack a problem is as important as the answer itself?

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Problem 18

Students approaching the study of chemistry must learn certain basic facts (such as the names
and symbols of the most common elements), but it is much more important that they learn
to think critically and to go beyond the specific examples discussed in class or in the textbook. Explain how learning to do this might be helpful in any career, even one far removed from chemistry.

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