Course Syllabus

Instructor: Thomas van Geel


Office: 358


Advanced Placement (AP) Chemistry is designed to be the equivalent of a college freshman course in general chemistry. We will cover a broad range of fascinating topics, making the course fun yet very rigorous; it requires a high level of dedication from the students. It is intended as a second-year high school chemistry course, and assumes a thorough mastery of the topics in sophomore chemistry. The curriculum is based on the guidelines of the College Board. For information about the course content, a complete description can be downloaded at the College Board website (


Textbook: Chemistry, Zumdahl. Students are expected to read the relevant chapters for each unit as we progress through the year. Students will have access to the textbook online, and also have the option of signing out a hard copy. Students who do not return the hard copy will receive a grade of "incomplete." The cost of a replacement book is $155.

Handouts: Course files are shared with you in the AP Handouts folder.

Computer: Laptops are now required for all students in WHS, and this is a computer-friendly class. You will need your laptop for note-taking, writing labs, etc.

Calculator: You will need a scientific or graphing calculator every day.

AP Chem review book: While not required, I strongly recommended buying one of the AP Chemistry course preparation books currently on the market by Barron’s, Princeton Review, Kaplan, etc. Each student should select one based upon personal preference. Please buy it at the beginning of the course and use it regularly throughout the year, not just to review before the exam.

Closed-toed shoes: For safety, students must wear closed-toe shoes to every class.  Keep a pair in your locker.




If you are more than 10 minutes late you will receive a cut. If you have a written excuse for being late, take it to the office before coming to class. If you are late without a written excuse, come directly to class.

MISSING CLASS: If a student misses class for any reason, they must take the initiative to ask a classmate for class notes, announcements, and make up missed work.


You will be handling hazardous chemicals in this class, so it is imperative that the class environment remains calm and quiet. No running, sitting on lab benches, or roughhousing of any kind. Safety glasses must be worn at all times during lab. There will be no food, drink, or gum in lab.

PROJECT: All students in AP Chemistry must complete a project after the AP exam.

Contacting Me

If I am not teaching a class, I can often be found in the science office, room 358. The best way to get in touch with me is email (; teachers in the science department do not have individual phones. I check my email daily, but my voicemail rarely. My schedule is posted on the classroom door.

Course Summary:

Date Details