Chemistry 104 Grades

The point is the unit of work in this course. Your grade for this course will be determined entirely by the number of points earned according to the following table:

D40 Points
D+45 Points
C-50 Points
C55 Points
C+60 Points
B-65 Points
B70 Points
B+75 Points
A-80 Points
A85 Points

Points are not considered to be earned until they have been documented in your notebook, with corresponding notebook page numbers recorded on the inside front cover.

Points may be earned on a variety of assignments:

  • Quizzes (1 point each): At the beginning of each class period a reading quiz is given on the first section (Mercury) of the chapter to be discussed that day. Quizzes are designed to be easy for those who have read the assignment and impossible for those who have not. The first three minutes of each class are devoted to the quiz. Students who are absent or late miss the opportunity to take the quiz. If you anticipate being absent, you may take the quiz before the scheduled quiz period. Quiz points are among the easiest points available and absent students will miss them sorely.

  • Tests (1 point each): Each chapter has a test associated with it. Tests are drawn from the second section (Sulfur) of each chapter. A test may have several questions on it and they must all be answered correctly for credit to be awarded. Tests are generally harder than quizzes, though they carry the same credit. You may retake tests as many times as you wish, but the questions differ from one copy of a test to the next. You may take no more than 3 tests per weekday. You may practice tests online, but only paper tests earn points.

  • Projects (1 point each): The third section of each chapter (Salt) describes an activity which generally results in the production of a particular substance. All projects are pass/fail and the criteria for passing are given at the end of each chapter. Projects are generally more time-consuming than tests, though they carry the same credit. Each project must be documented in the notebook as described in Appendix B of the textbook.

  • Gold (1 point each): When you have earned 3 points (quiz, test, project) from a single chapter, you will have the opportunity to be awarded a 4th point for the mastery of that chapter. It is therefore to your advantage to complete whole chapters rather than working on them piecemeal. Write a short essay describing how the experience of doing the project changed your understanding of the information covered by the quiz and test.

  • Platinum (4 points each): You may make a YouTube video on any of the projects. Your video must meet titling and editing standards to be coordinated with Paige Flanagan of the library. Videos of sufficient quality (I am the sole judge) will be awarded 4 points, which may be divided (2 each) between two students working on a joint video.

  • Pre-Course Essay (0-4 points) due at the end of the first week: Write an essay of at least five paragraphs to the standard of the Rhetoric Proficiency Exam on one of the following topics: (a) Describe a chemical process or industry (hobby, job, parent's job, local industry) with which you have some familiarity (b) Reflect on a past chemistry course you have taken and evaluate why you did or did not connect with the material (c) Describe an experience you had where making something motivated you to learn something new.

  • Mid-Course Essay (0-4 points) due at the end of the seventh week: Write an essay of at least five paragraphs to the standard of the Rhetoric Proficiency Exam on one of the following topics: (a) Evaluate whether you have been a Gunner or a Slacker in the course so far. Is that working for you? (b) Reflect on how one of the projects you have done changed your attitude about something outside the course (c) How has your experience working on one project motivated or amplified your work on another.

  • Final Essay (0-4 points) due on the day scheduled for the final exam: Write an essay of at least five paragraphs to the standard of the Rhetoric Proficiency Exam on one of the following topics: (a) How has your experience in this course changed your attitude toward chemistry, industry, or technology? (b) What would it mean for you to live an extraordinary life? (c) How have the projects in this course motivated or amplified your ability to learn chemistry?