COLLEGE CHEMISTRY FOR THE GENERAL STUDENT

E. A. Strong
1915 School Science and Mathematics  
The material for the paper which I am about-^t o read was suggested to me incidentally during a study which I have been making in recent years concerning the mutual dependence and natural boundaries of the several physical and biological sciences. This material is of two sorts: First, more or less desultoryconversations with, and communications from, teachers of ph}^sics in universities and colleges concerning the kind and amount of chemistry needed by a college student of physics; and, second,
more » ... from the examination, made for another purpose, of a large number of students' notebooks in college chemistry. Such back-stairs methods of investigation are open to all sorts of objections, and I would be the first to discredit them, except as furnishing suggestions for further study. Most of this material was collected at the east during my summer vacation; little came from my own state; though I have no reason to think that conditions east and west are very different. Partly owing to the desultory character of this material, and partly in the interest of brevity, I will not attempt to discuss this material in full, but will allow myself the always hazardous liberty of giving some impressions derived from it. It has, then, been borne in upon me that the enormous expansion of chemical instruction in these latter days has, to the general student, brought some evils especially a desultory habit of mind and some tolerance of shallowness and inaccuracy. In a word, this general student has endeavored to cover too much ground, and this ground almost entirely outside the boundaries of thejold chemistry the chemistry of reactions where his main interest lies. He entered classes in chemistry to get that which is most distinctive of chemical science rather than in the outlying fields and along the rapidly extending boundaries of this great subject. Sooner or later he will take courses in physiology, physics, bacteriology, etc., where he will get at once more extended and more consecutive work than he can hope to get in a year's course, mainly devoted to applied chemistry. He needs chemical experience, and some exact knowledge of chemical fact and chemical law, and failing in this it is of little account that he has spent much time and found great interest in winding T.r1?6^1!^t he^ember, 1914, meeting of the C. A. S. & M. T. held at Hyde Park High school, Chicago.
doi:10.1111/j.1949-8594.1915.tb16266.x fatcat:j6bd2tiucjbe5ftzcxhyui6pha