Spring 2021

Introduction to Materials Science

Listed in: Chemistry, as CHEM-380


Sandra Burkett (Section 01)


Materials – both naturally occurring and human-made – are the solid "stuff" of everyday life.  Technological advances are often limited by materials challenges and are often driven by the development of new materials.  A fundamental principle of materials science is that the properties of a solid are related to its atomic and molecular structure, as well as to its organization on larger length scales than are traditionally considered in chemistry.  We will explore the connections within the "materials science tetrahedron" of structure, properties, processing, and performance for a range of materials including metals, glasses and ceramics, polymers or plastics, and composites.  Specific systems may include semiconductors and materials for electronics technology, energy and battery materials, optical and photovoltaic materials, “smart” responsive or self-healing materials, materials for sports and apparel, renewably sourced and recyclable materials, natural and bioinspired materials, biomedical materials, and art and architectural materials and conservation.

For Spring 2021:  The course will involve synchronous class meetings, which will be in person if health and safety considerations permit.  The class will have 12 or fewer students, so all lecture and discussion sessions will be interactive.  The class will involve small-group project work. 

Requisite: CHEM 151 or 155, plus two courses in CHEM and/or PHYS, or instructor permission. Limited to 12 students. Spring semester. Professor Burkett. 

If Overenrolled: Priority to Chemistry majors (seniors then juniors then sophomores)


2021-22: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2021