Chemistry (CHEM) 330

Environmental Chemistry (Revision 5)

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Science

Prerequisite: CHEM 217 and CHEM 218 or equivalent first-year chemistry courses at the university level.

Faculty: Faculty of Science & Technology

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CHEM 330 has a Challenge for Credit option.

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Issues concerning our health and environment have become increasingly important in recent years. Ozone depletion, the "green house effect," heavy metal poisoning and acid rain are only a few controversial issues that have come to the public's attention through the media. Often, in discussions of these phenomena, "facts" are (intentionally or unintentionally) misrepresented, exaggerated or taken out of context. It becomes difficult to weigh the importance of much of this information when one is constantly bombarded by media sensationalism.

It has become increasingly important for young scientists not only to be aware of environmental and health issues, but also to be well informed about them. Chemistry 330: Environmental Chemistry will provide abroad overview of many important environmental issues. It will also give students the most reliable and recent scientific information available, so that they may draw independent and informed conclusions about these issues.


Review Units and Reference Material

  • Stratospheric Chemistry: The Ozone Layer
  • The Ozone Holes
  • The Chemistry of Ground-level Air Pollution
  • The Environmental and Health Consequences of Polluted Air—Outdoors and Indoors
  • The Greenhouse Effect
  • The Chemistry of Natural Waters
  • The Pollution and Purification of Water
  • Toxic Heavy Metals
  • Pesticides
  • Dioxins, Furans, and PCBs
  • Other Toxic Organic Compounds of Environmental Concern
  • Wastes, Soils, and Sediments

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the course the student will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of chemical principles of various fundamental environmental phenomena and processes in land, water, and air.
  2. Apply basic concepts of chemical thermodynamics, kinetics, and photochemistry to analyze chemical processes involved in different environmental problems.
  3. Describe the practical chemistry in and anthropogenic impact of industrial processes, water purification, waste treatment, energy production, and pollution mitigation strategies.
  4. Critically discuss local and global environmental issues based on scientific principles and data.
  5. Find and analyze physio-chemical and toxicological information and judge its reliability and significance.
  6. Accurately portray, explain and interpret data calculation and present environmental scientific ideas and practices in writing.


To receive credit for CHEM 330, you must achieve a course composite grade of at least D (50 percent), an average of 60 percent on the tutor-marked assignments, a grade of at least 45 percent on each of the two examinations. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Activity Weighting
Assignments 40%
Midterm Exam 20%
Final Exam 40%
Total 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Baird, C, & Cann, M. (2012). Environmental chemistry (5th ed.). New York: W. H. Freeman.

Baird, C, & Cann, M. (2012). Solutions manual to accompany Baird/Cann's Environmental chemistry, (5th ed.). New York: W. H. Freeman.

Other Materials

Online course materials include a study guide, student manual, assignment manual, self-test quizzes, sample examinations, and supplemental questions.

Challenge for Credit Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows you to demonstrate that you have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university-level course.

Full information about Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the CHEM 330 challenge registration, you must achieve an overall grade of at least D (50 percent) on the examination. This includes a 2-hour midterm examination (40%) and a 3-hour final examination (60%).

Activity Weighting
Midterm Exam (2 Hours) 40%
Final Exam (3 Hours) 60%
Total 100%

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 5, May 26, 2014.

View previous syllabus