Skip to main content

FAQ - Spring 2021 Courses

    Chemistry and Biochemistry faculty energetically plan for great courses for Spring 2021

1.  Will a particular course be taught remotely, in-person, or in some hybrid manner?

Please check the following list, as the presentation of each course varies somewhat:

Chem 22 Lecture: Chemistry 22 will be taught in remote format. Primary instruction will take asynchronously via recorded lectures. Optional Q&A and interactive problem-solving sessions will be held synchronously during scheduled lecture time. Office hours will be conducted remotely.

Chem 22 Lab: All sections of Chemistry 22 laboratory will be taught in remote format. Lab sections will meet synchronously during their scheduled times during some weeks, but only asynchronously during other weeks. Students will be expected to prepare pre-lab assignments. During the weeks when synchronous exercises are conducted, students will engage in computer-based exercises and/or spectroscopic structure determination with their peers and instructors during the laboratory period. Most data analysis will be completed outside of the lab period.

Chem 38 Lecture: Chemistry 38 will be taught in remote, synchronous format. Instruction will take place during scheduled class periods via Zoom.  Office hours will be conducted remotely.

Chem 38 Lab:  All sections of Chemistry 38 laboratory will be taught in remote format.  Lab sections will meet synchronously during their scheduled times.  Students will be expected to prepare pre-lab assignments and during lab periods will engage in virtual experimentation and data analysis with their peers and instructors.  Additional work, including additional data analysis and report sheets, will be completed outside of lab time.

Chem 43: Chem 43 lecture and lab will be taught in a hybrid format. As circumstances permit, the lecture and the laboratory components of the course will be taught in-person with strict adherence to social distancing guidelines. Office hours will be held both in-person and remotely via Zoom.

Chem 55: Chemistry 55 will be taught in remote format, during scheduled class periods via Zoom; on-line group work may also occur during class periods.  Depending on the mix of on-campus and off-campus students, and the status of the pandemic, there may be opportunities for in-person office hours and problem sessions.

Chem 66:  Chem 66 lecture and lab will be taught in a hybrid format. Students will be conducting experiments in person with strict adhesion to the social distance rules. Students will be processing the data, writing reports, working on their papers and literature projects remotely. Tuesdays will be reserved for the prelab activities. Wednesdays will be used to conduct the bulk of experimental work. Thursdays will be used to either complete the experiments (e.g. repeat a measurement, collect NMR or UV-vis) or to work on the data processing/writing assignments. In case of shut down due to COVID (or students ill or on quarantine) lab activities will be replace by equivalent on-line activities.

Chem 102:  Remote format. Instruction and group work will take place during scheduled class periods via Zoom; office hours will be conducted remotely. Supplementary lectures will be pre-recorded.

Chem 118:  Chemistry 118 will be in a hybrid format. Classes will be held synchronously with discussions of various primary research papers with the possibility for brief lectures to cover concepts and methods utilized in those research papers. Office hour will be held remotely.

Chem 94, 96, 180: For thesis students taking Chem 96 or 180, two full credits over the academic year are required, and those credits can be taken during two of the three terms. Email to register.

2.  Will any changes be made to the course schedule; for example, will a course offered in the fall be also offered in the spring?

Though we recognize the sequential nature of our curriculum, it is not possible for the department to offer courses (or to repeat courses) in an "off" semester.

3.  Do courses in the department retain their prerequisites? Yes.

4.  Will it still be possible to carry out research in the department?

Please contact individual faculty members.  Limited opportunities may exist.

5.  What if I am taking a semester or a year off and planning to transfer credits to Swarthmore?

Swarthmore students on leaves of absence during the 2020-2021 academic year are limited to applying no more than 2.0 approved Swarthmore credits for work done elsewhere toward their Swarthmore degree (taken either in-person or remotely) while on leave. These courses can be taken either as Swarthmore enrolled students participating in our study abroad program (due to Covid-19, Swarthmore is allowing students to "study abroad" in their own country/city); or by enrolling independently at another school. Students cannot take courses at Swarthmore and the other institution at the same time and all courses need to be pre-approved through the OCS portal. Additional important information relevant to Chemistry/Biochemistry course approval is found at the following link: