Atoms, Molecules, and Reactions

Fall Open
Class Standing
Dharshi Bopegedera

This upper-division chemistry program offers advanced studies in physical chemistry to prepare students for graduate studies or careers in chemistry. Based on the theme "what do chemists do?," our classroom studies will be connected with the applications chemists encounter in their everyday work.
In the fall we will study topics in quantum mechanics and thermodynamics. We will begin with simple quantum mechanical systems, apply them to solve chemical problems, and investigate how they can be adapted for more complex systems. In thermodynamics we will explore the laws that lay the foundation in this field of study.

In the winter quarter we will continue our studies in quantum mechanics to include more complex systems and investigate the use of spectroscopy that validates quantum mechanical concepts learned earlier. We will conduct in-depth investigations of spectrometric methods and detailed analyses of high-resolution spectra of molecules. We will continue our studies in thermodynamics with topics in chemical equilibria, kinetics, and statistical mechanics.

Students' understanding of the material in all areas will be assessed throughout the two quarters using weekly homework assignments, closed-book exams, and primary literature-based assignments. 

In both quarters, students will engage with the professional chemistry community via chemistry symposia and career related events.
In the laboratory in the fall quarter, students will work with analytical instrumentation available at the college, earning driver's licenses to operate them and using the instruments to collect data on a variety of samples. Additionally, students will learn library search methods and how to use Zotero as a bibliography management tool. In the winter, students will engage in a research project. Although the program will end in winter quarter, students are encouraged to continue this project into the spring and present their results at the annual Undergraduate Research Symposium of the Puget Sound Section of the American Chemical Society and at the annual Evergreen Science Carnival & Research Exposition.
Please note that part-time options (less than 16 credits) are available in both quarters.

Fall Anticipated Credit Equivalencies

*6 - Thermodynamics

*6 - Quantum mechanics

*4 - Instrumentation laboratory and library research practices


Winter Anticipated Credit Equivalencies

*6 - Thermodynamics

*6 - Quantum mechanics

*4 - Undergraduate research in chemistry



At least one year of college chemistry is required of all students taking any part of the program. Integral and differential calculus is required for quantum mechanics (fall, winter, and spring) and thermodynamics (winter and spring).

Students must have completed differential and integral calculus to take quantum mechanics and thermodynamics.

Students must pass fall quarter exams for quantum mechanics and inorganic chemistry.

Course Reference Numbers
So - Sr (16): 20014
So - Sr (1 - 16): 20015

Course Reference Numbers

So - Sr (16): 10015
So - Sr (1 - 16): 10018

Academic Details

Studies or careers in chemistry, physics, mathematics, analytical instrumentation, environmental science, engineering, and science education


Students wanting to register for less than 16 credits in any of the combinations listed below will register using the variable credit CRN and will require faculty signature. Email the faculty with the details of the credit combination you are interested in for permission to register.

Fall quarter (6, 12, or 16 credits):

6 credits - quantum mechanics

6 credits - thermodynamics

12 credits - quantum mechanics and thermodynamics

16 credits - quantum mechanics, thermodynamics, instrumentation laboratory and research methods

Winter quarter (4, 8, 12, or 16 credits):

6 credits - quantum mechanics

6 credits - thermodynamics

12 credits - quantum mechanics and thermodynamics

16 credits - quantum mechanics, thermodynamics, undergraduate research in chemistry


Fall: $130 fee covers symposium registration ($30) and required lab fees ($100).

Winter: $100 fee covers required lab fee.


12 quantum mechanics

12 thermodynamics

4 instrumentation laboratory and library research methods

4 undergraduate research in chemistry


In Person (F)
In Person (W)

See definition of Hybrid, Remote, and In-Person instruction

Schedule Details
LAB 2 3221 - Class Lab


Date Revision
2023-08-22 Was FWS program, is now only FW.