Fall 2021 - CHEM 260 D100

Atoms, Molecules, Spectroscopy (4)

Class Number: 2446

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu, Th 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM
    AQ 5037, Burnaby

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 20, 2021
    3:30 PM – 6:30 PM
    WMC 3210, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    CHEM 122, MATH 152, and PHYS 121, 126 or 141 (or PHYS 102 with a minimum grade of B), all with a minimum grade of C-. Recommended: MATH 232.



Elements of physical chemistry from the molecular point of view. Introduction to quantum chemistry, atomic and molecular structure, and spectroscopy. PHYS 285 will be accepted in lieu of CHEM 260. Quantitative.


Please note, this course outline was accurate at the time of publication but is subject to change.

Mode of Teaching:
3 lecture hours/week; 1 tutorial hour/week; 2 lab hours/week

Lecture: In-Person, Burnaby Campus
Laboratory: In-Person, Burnaby Campus
Tutorial: In-Person, Burnaby Campus

Lecture Topics:

Introduction to principles of quantum mechanics
Exactly solvable quantum mechanical models
Atomic structure
Chemical bonding
Molecular spectroscopy (microwave, infrared, visible, magnetic resonance, Raman)

This course will cover topics 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, and 13A from the primary textbook.


  • Labs/Assignments 25%
  • Midterm Exams 25%
  • Final Exam 50%


Grading Notes: OR 25% Labs/Assignments, 0% Midterm Exams, 75% Final Exam, whichever gives the best result.

However, a mark of less than 50% in the lab section of the course and/or a mark of less than 30% in the final exam will result in a grade of F.


Attendance of In-Person Laboratory Sessions: It is mandatory for students to attend all in-person laboratory sessions. If you are unable to attend an in-person laboratory session due to illness, please contact your instructor as soon as possible to discuss alternative arrangements.



Primary Text:

  • P. Atkins, J. de Paula, and J. Keeler, Atkins' Physical Chemistry, 11th Edition, 2018, Publisher: Oxford University Press.
  • P. Atkins and J. de Paula, Physical Chemistry, 10th Edition, 2014, Publisher: Freeman/Worth. Earlier editions are OK.

Other Useful Texts:
  • D. A. McQuarrie and J. D. Simon, Physical Chemistry, 1997, Publisher: University Science Books.
  • Thomas Engel, Quantum Chemistry and Spectroscopy, 3rd Edition, 2012, Publisher: Pearson.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

A grade of C- or better is required for all prerequisite courses.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in fall 2021 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with approximately 70 to 80 per cent of classes in person/on campus, with safety plans in place.  Whether your course will be in-person or through remote methods will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the fall 2021 term.