TLC for General Chemistry 1

Learning Strategies for General Chemistry 1 (CHM 1045)

The Center for Academic Success (CfAS) is hosting a program called “Learning Strategies for General Chemistry.” Specific skills are necessary to be a successful student in chemistry. Reinforcing algebraic thinking and making connections between the mechanics of chemistry and the general concepts are integral to building a strong foundation in the physical sciences.

This program is facilitated by tutors who have been very successful in general chemistry and are former students of chemistry faculty here at FIU. They have experienced the same frustrations as many general chemistry students and are excited about sharing the learning strategies they have identified as most successful for the course. The following are expectations for participants in this program.

The center will be eliciting feedback from you as students to refine the program to suit your needs as learners and the faculty’s needs as educators.

  • Workshop Expectations
    1. Be prepared. Bring your general chemistry textbook, syllabus, and any pertinent materials related to your class. Any forms of research material are extremely helpful.
    2. Be on time. Sessions are one hour in length. While workshops consist of 10-15 students, our tutors need all of this time in order to provide each participant with the necessary attention and detail to his/her progress.
    3. Be consistent. Your professor may provide an extra credit incentive. In order to receive the possible extra credit, be consistent in your session attendance. If you miss the first week or two consecutive weeks later in the semester without notifying your tutor, your spot in the session will be reopened to other students.
    4. Be receptive. You will receive a variety of strategies, organizers, handouts, and study rubrics throughout the sessions. Keep these in your ‘metacognitive bank’ and ask your tutor questions.
    5. Be responsible. Once you register for a workshop at the Center for Academic Success (CfAS), you are reserving a place that no other student can take. Be considerate of these workshops. Keep your Panther ID handy when you arrive to the center. You must enter your information at the front area of our center, and make sure that your tutor records your attendance. At the end of the semester these records will be submitted to your professor.
  • Workshop Syllabus

    Please note that the Workshop Syllabus is subject to change. 

    Session 1:Nomenclature and Math in Chemistry

    Nomenclature is an important aspect of chemistry as it allows for a systematic approach to naming and recognition of chemical compounds. Also important in problem solving is knowledge of math concepts such as significant figures, use of algebraic manipulation to solve problems, and conversion factors used to find the correct units. This workshop will encompass an introduction to the nomenclature of basic chemical compounds and basic math concepts.

    Session 2:Creating and Applying Chemical Equations

    Chemical equations are the basis of chemistry. This workshop will provide a refresher on how to write, balance, and apply chemical equations, and why it is important. These are essential skills that will serve students in chemistry, biology, and beyond.

    Session 3:Study Hall/Exam Review

    Bring your study materials to prepare for your upcoming exams! Or bring your first exam to review the difficult problems!

    Session 4:Making Sense of Chemistry

    This workshop focuses on learning techniques especially as they relate to chemistry. This session will take place immediately following Exam 1 to identify more appropriate study skills for the upcoming tests.

    Sessions 5 & 6:Quantum Chemistry

    Quantum chemistry is the modeling of electron behavior and the study of chemical systems. In this workshop, Bohr’s model of the atom is used to discuss electron configuration, quantum numbers, and periodic trends.

    Session 7:Study Hall

    Bring your study materials to prepare for your upcoming exams! Or bring your second exam to review the difficult problems in preparation for the last few weeks of the semester!

    Sessions 8 & 9:Lewis Structures- Molecular Design & Architecture

    Lewis structures are diagrams that show the bonding between atoms of a molecule and the electrons in that molecule. In this workshop, the octet rule will be used to discuss chemical structure. Exceptions to this rule will also be covered, and valence electrons will be used to examine more complicated chemical structures.

     Session 10:Thermochemistry

    Thermochemistry is the study of the heat energy as it relates to the accompanying chemical and/or physical reactions. This workshop emphasizes learning to apply the Laws of Thermodynamics to chemical reactions with a focus on enthalpy, heat, work, and heat capacity.

    Sessions 11, 12, & 13:Study Hall

    Bring your materials to prepare for the upcoming exams!


On the registration page, select the topic(s) that interest you. Then enter all the fields of requested information.