General Chemistry

Prentice Hall
Ralph H Petrucci / F. Geoffrey Herring / Jeffry D. Madura / Carey Bissonnette  
Prentice Hall
Total pages
March 2016
Related Titles


The most trusted general chemistry text in Canada is back in a thoroughly revised 11th edition.

Petrucci General Chemistry: Principles and Modern Applications is written for the student that has already studied some chemistry. Students with no prior background and those who could use a refresher will find that the early chapters develop fundamental concepts from the most elementary ideas. Students who do plan to become professional chemists will also find opportunities in the text to pursue their own special interests.

Petrucci General Chemistry: Principles and Modern Applications, is recognized for its superior problems, lucid writing, precision of argument, and precise and detailed treatment of the subject. The 11th edition offers enhanced hallmark features, new innovations and revised discussions that that respond to key market needs for detailed and modern treatment of organic chemistry, embracing the power of visual learning and conquering the challenges of effective problem solving and assessment. In every explanation, illustration, and media resource for General Chemistry: Principles and Modern Applications, 11e students and instructors benefit from the care and craftsmanship of an extraordinarily talented and collaborative authorial team of active researchers who also share a wealth of experience from regularly teaching the General Chemistry course for majors as well as non-majors.

Personalize Learning with MasteringChemistry

MasteringChemistry is an online homework, tutorial, and assessment program designed to work with this text to engage students and improve results. Interactive, self-paced tutorials provide individualized coaching to help students stay on track. With a wide range of activities available, students can actively learn, understand, and retain even the most difficult concepts.


Personalize Learning with MasteringChemistry

MasteringChemistry is an online homework, tutorial, and assessment program designed to work with this text to engage students and improve results. Interactive, self-paced tutorials provide individualized coaching to help students stay on track. With a wide range of activities available, students can actively learn, understand, and retain even the most difficult concepts.



The pedagogical apparatus and overall approach in this edition continue to reflect contemporary thoughts on how best to teach general chemistry. We have retained the following key features of the text:

  • Logical approach to solving problems. All worked examples are presented consistently throughout the text by using a tripartite structure of Analyze-Solve-Assess. This presentation not only encourages students to use a logical approach in solving problems but also provides them with a way to start when they are trying to solve a problem that may seem, at first, impossibly difficult. The approach is used implicitly by those who have had plenty of practice solving problems; but for those who are just starting out, the Analyze-Solve-Assess structure will serve to remind students to (1) analyze the information and plan a strategy, (2) implement the strategy, and (3) check or assess their answer to ensure that it is a reasonable one.
  • Integrative Practice Examples and End of Chapter Exercises. Users of previous editions have given us very positive feedback about the quality of the integrative examples at the end of each chapter and the variety of the end-of-chapter exercises. We have added two practice examples (Practice Example A and Practice Example B) to every Integrative Example in the text. Rather than replace end-of-chapter exercises with new exercises, we have opted in most chapters to increase the number of exercises. In most chapters, at least 10 new exercises have been added; and in many chapters, 20 or more exercises have been added.
  • Use of IUPAC recommendations. We are pleased that our book serves the needs of instructors and students around the globe. Because communication among scientists in general, and chemists in particular, is made easier when we agree to use the same terms and notations, we have decided to follow–with relatively few exceptions–recommendations made by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). In particular, the version of the periodic table that now appears throughout the text is based on the one currently endorsed by IUPAC. The IUPAC-endorsed version places the elements lanthanum (La) and actinium (Ac) in the lanthanides and actinides series, respectively, rather than in group 3. Interestingly, almost every other chemistry book still uses the old version of the periodic table, even though the proper placement of La and Ac has been known for more than 20 years!  An important change is the use of IUPAC-recommended symbols and units for thermodynamic quantities. For example, in this edition, standard enthalpies of reaction are represented by the symbol  (not ) and are expressed in kJ mol−1 (not kJ).



Chapter Opener

Each chapter opens with listing of the main headings to provide a convenient overview of the chapter’s Contents. The opener also contains a list of numbered Learning Objectives that correspond with the main sections of the chapter.


Key terms are boldfaced where they are defined in the text. A Glossary of key terms with their definitions is presented in Appendix F.


Highlighted Boxes

Significant equations, concepts, and rules are highlighted against a color background for easy reference.


Concept Assessment

Concept Assessment Questions (many of which are qualitative) are distributed throughout the body of the chapters. They enable students to test their understanding of basic concepts before proceeding further. Full solutions are provided near the back of the book in Appendix G.


Examples with Practice Examples A and B

Worked-Out Examples throughout the text illustrate how to apply the concepts. In many instances, a drawing or photograph is included to help students visualize what is going on in the problem. More importantly, all worked-out Examples now follow a tripartite structure of Analyze-Solve-Assess to encourage students to adopt a logical approach to problem solving.


Keep In Mind Notes

Keep In Mind margin notes remind students about ideas introduced earlier in the text that are important to an understanding of the topic under discussion. In some instances they also warn students about common pitfalls.


Are You Wondering?

Are You Wondering? boxes pose and answer good questions that students often ask. Some are designed to help students avoid common misconceptions; others provide analogies or alternate explanations of a concept; and still others address apparent inconsistencies in the material that the students are learning. These topics can be assigned or omitted at the instructor’s discretion.


Focus On Discussions

References are given near the end of chapter to a Focus On essay which is found on the Mastering-Chemistry™ site ( These essays describe interesting and significant applications of the chemistry discussed in the chapter. They help show the importance of chemistry in all aspects of daily life.


Additional Material on Organic Chemistry Chapter

Chapter 27 includes references to discussions of Organic Acids and Bases; A Closer Look at the E2 Mechanism; and Carboxylic Acids and Their Derivatives: The Addition-Elimination Mechanism that are found on the MasteringChemistry™ site (



A prose Summary is provided for each chapter. The Summary is organized by the main headings in the chapter and incorporates the key terms in boldfaced type.


Integrative Example

An Integrative Example is provided near the end of chapter. These challenging examples show students how to link various concepts from the chapter and earlier chapters to solve complex problems. Each Integrative Example is now accompanied by a Practice Example A and Practice Example B. Answers to these Practice Examples are given on the MasteringChemistry™ site (

End-of-Chapter Questions and Exercises

Each chapter ends with four categories of questions:


Exercises are organized by topic subheads and are presented in pairs. Answers to selected questions (i.e., those numbered in red) are given on the MasteringChemistry™ site (

  • Integrative and Advanced Exercises are more advanced than the preceding Exercises. They are not grouped by topic or type. They integrate material from sections of the chapter and sometimes from multiple chapters. In some instances, they introduce new ideas or pursue specific ideas further than is done in the chapter. Answers to selected questions (i.e., those numbered in red) are given on the MasteringChemistry™ site (
  • Feature Problems require the highest level of skill to solve. Some deal with classic experiments; some require students to interpret data or graphs; some suggest alternative techniques for problem solving; some are comprehensive in their scope; and some introduce new material. These problems are a resource that can be used in several ways: for discussion in class, for individually assigned homework, or for collaborative group work. Answers to selected questions (i.e., those numbered in red) are given on the MasteringChemistry™ site (
  • Self-Assessment Exercises are designed to help students review and prepare for some of the types of questions that often appear on quizzes and exams. Students can use these questions to decide whether they are ready to move on to the next chapter or first spend more time working with the concepts in the current chapter. Answers with explanations to selected questions (i.e., those numbered in red) are given on the MasteringChemistry™ site (www.mastering

New to this Edition

Personalize Learning with MasteringChemistry

MasteringChemistry is an online homework, tutorial, and assessment program designed to work with this text to engage students and improve results. Interactive, self-paced tutorials provide individualized coaching to help students stay on track. With a wide range of activities available, students can actively learn, understand, and retain even the most difficult concepts.


  • NEW Content & Worked Examples to align with current theories, ie. polarizability, spontaneous change, thermodynamic equilibrium constant.
  • Updated coverage of IUPAC recommendations, i.e. atomic mass intervals, standard enthalpies of reaction, bar v atm.
  • Content Reorganization to improve flow. In this edition we retain the core organization of the previous edition with two notable exceptions. First, we have moved the chapter entitled Spontaneous Change: Entropy and Gibbs Energy forward in the text. It is now Chapter 13. By moving the introduction of entropy and Gibbs energy forward in the text, we are able to use these concepts in subsequent chapters. Second, we have moved the chapter on chemical kinetics to Chapter 20. Consequently, the discussion of chemical kinetics now appears after the chapters that rely on equilibrium and thermodynamic concepts.
  • NEW Adaptive Follow-Up Adaptive Follow-Up Assignments in MasteringChemistry are based on each student's past performance on their course work to date, including homework, tests, and quizzes. These provide additional coaching and targeted practice as needed, so students can master the material.
  • NEW Dynamic Study Module Topics include key math skills, general chemistry skills such as nuclear chemistry, phases of matter, redox reactions, acids and bases, and organic and biochemistry skills.
  • NEW! Learning Catalytics generates class discussion, guides your lecture, and promotes peer-to-peer learning with real-time analytics. MasteringChemistry with eText now provides Learning Catalytics–an interactive student response tool that uses students’ smartphones, tablets, or laptops to engage them in more sophisticated tasks and thinking.
  • NEW End-of-Chapter questions. 450 new End-of-Chapter questions will be added to the Mastering item library (approximately 50% of these will be algorithmic) and they will be easily located with the “NEW” indicator icon 

We have made the following important changes in specific chapters and appendices:

  • In Chapter 2 (Atoms and the Atomic Theory), new material is included to describe use of atomic mass intervals and conventional atomic masses for elements such as H, Li, B, C, N, O, Mg, Si, S, Cl, Br, and Tl.  Atomic mass intervals are recommended by the IUPAC because the isotopic abundances of these elements vary from one source to another, and therefore, their atomic masses cannot be considered constants of nature.
  • Chapter 4 (Chemical Reactions) includes a new section that discusses the extent of reaction, and introduces a tabular approach for representing the changes in amount in terms of a single variable, , representing the extent of reaction.
  • In Chapter 5 (Introduction to Reactions in Solution), we revised Section 5-1 to differentiate between dissociation and ionization, and introduced a new figure to illustrate the dissociation of an ionic compound in water.
  • Chapter 6 (Gases) makes increased use of the recommended units of pressure (e.g., Pa, kPa, and bar).  Section 6-7 on the kinetic-molecular theory has been significantly revised. For example, the derivation of Boyle’s Law has been simplified and now comes after the subsections on Distribution of Molecular Speeds and The Meaning of Temperature. Section 6-8 has also been revised so that Graham’s is presented first, as an empirical law, which is then justified by using the kinetic-molecular theory.
  • In Chapter 7 (Thermochemistry), we have updated the notation to ensure that we are using, for the most part, symbols that are recommended by the IUPAC. For example, standard enthalpies of reaction are represented by the symbol  (not ) and are expressed in kJ mol−1 (not kJ). We have added a molecular interpretation of specific heat capacities (in Section 7-2) and an introduction to entropy (in Section 7-10).
  • Chapter 8 (Electrons in Atoms), has been substantially rewritten to provide a logical introduction to the ideas leading to wave mechanics. Sections 8-2 and 8-3 of the previous edition have been combined and the material re-organized. This chapter includes a new section that focuses on the energy level diagram and spectrum of the hydrogen atom. The section entitled “Interpreting and Representing the Orbitals of the Hydrogen Atom” has been rewritten to include a discussion of the radial functions. A new subsection describing the conceptual model for multielectron atoms has been added to the section entitled Multielectron Atoms. The sections on multielectron atoms and electron configurations have been re-written to emphasize more explicitly that the observed ground-state electron configuration for an atom is the one that minimizes Eatom and that the energies of the orbitals is only one consideration. There are two new AYW boxes (Is the Born interpretation an idea we use to determine the final form of a wave function?; Are all orbital transitions allowed in atomic absorption and emission spectra?)
  • In Chapter 9 (The Periodic Table and Some Atomic Properties), a number of sections have been rewritten to emphasize the importance of effective nuclear charge in determining atomic properties. A new section on polarizability has been introduced. Several new figures have been created to illustrate the variation of effective nuclear charge and atomic properties across a period or down a group  (e.g. Effective nuclear charges for the first 36 elements; the variation of effective nuclear charge and percent screening with atomic number; the variation of average distance from the nucleus with atomic number; first ionization energies of the third row p-block elements; electron affinities of some of the main group elements; polarization of an atom; the variation of polarizability and atomic volume with atomic number). The sections on ionization energies and electron affinities have been significantly revised. Of particular note, we have revised the discussion of the decrease in ionization energy that occurs as we move from group 2 to 13 and from group 15 to 16.  Our discussion points out that various explanations have been used. The section from 10e entitled “Periodic Properties of the Elements” has been deleted.
  • Chapter 11 (Chemical Bonding II: Valence Bond and Molecular Orbital Theories), has been revised to include an expanded discussion of the redistribution of electron density that occurs during bond formation, an improved introduction to section 11-5 Molecular Orbital Theory, and an improved discussion of molecular orbital theory of the CO molecule. We have moved section 11-7 Bonding in Metals online.
  • Chapter 13 (Spontaneous Change: Entropy and Gibbs Energy) is a totally revised version of Chapter 19 from the previous edition.  The chapter focuses first on Boltzmann’s view of entropy, which is based on microstates, and then on Clausius’s view, which relates entropy change to reversible heat transfer. The connection between microstates and particle-in-a-box model is developed to reinforce Boltzmann’s view of entropy. Clausius’ view of entropy change is used to develop expressions for important and commonly encountered physical changes (e.g. phase transitions; heating or cooling at constant pressure; isothermal expansion or compression of an ideal gas). These expressions are subsequently used to develop the criterion for predicting the direction of spontaneous change. The chapter includes a proper description of the difference between the Gibbs energy change of a system, DG, and the reaction Gibbs energy, DrG. The reaction Gibbs energy (DrG) is used as the basis for describing how the Gibbs energy of a system changes with composition (i.e., with respect to the extent of reaction). The derivation of the equation is done in a separate section that may be used or skipped at the instructor’s discretion. The concepts of chemical potential and activity are also introduced.
  • In Chapter 14 (Solutions and their Physical Properties), we have added a section to describe the standard thermodynamic properties of aqueous ions. We use the concepts of entropy and chemical potential in Chapter 13 to explain vapor pressure lowering and why gasoline and water don’t mix.
  • Chapter 15 (Principles of Chemical Equilibrium) has been significantly revised to emphasize the thermodynamic basis of equilibrium and to de-emphasize aspects of kinetics. There is an increased emphasis on the thermodynamic equilibrium constant, which is expressed in terms of activities along with an updated discussion of Le Chatelier’s Principle to emphasize certain limitations associated with its use (e.g. for certain reactions and initial conditions, the addition of a reactant may actually cause net change to the left). Several new worked examples are included to show how equilibrium constant expressions may be simplified and solved when the equilibrium constant is either very small or very large.
  • In Chapter 16 (Acids and Bases), significant changes have been made. Sections 16-1 through 16-3 have been significantly revised to provide a more logical flow and to emphasize and demonstrate that the distinction between strong and weak acids is based on the degree of ionization, which in turn depends on the magnitude of the acid ionization constant. There are two new sections, namely Sections 16-7 (Simultaneous and Consecutive Acid-Base Reactions: A General Approach) and 16-9 (Qualitative Apsects of Acid-Base Reactions).  Section 16-7 focuses on writing and using material balance and charge equations. Section 16-9 focuses on predicting the equilibrium position of a general acid-base reaction. A new subsection entitled “Rationalization of Acid Strengths: An Alternative Approach” has been added to the section on Molecular Structure and Acid Strength.  This new subsection focuses on factors that stabilize the anion formed by an acid.
  • In Chapter 19 (Electrochemistry), we have modified the Nernst equation to have the form .  We have changed the text so that the standard hydrogen electrode is defined with respect to a pressure of 1 bar instead of 1 atm, and added a problem to the Integrative and Advanced Exercises to illustrate that this change in pressure causes only a small change in the standard reduction potentials (see exercise 108).  We have also added a section on reserve batteries.
  • In Appendix D, we have modified the table of Standard Electrode (Reduction) Potentials so that it now includes a column with the cell notation for the half-reactions.

Table of Contents

1. Matter: Its Properties and Measurement

2. Atoms and the Atomic Theory

3. Chemical Compounds

4. Chemical Reactions

5. Introduction to Reactions in Aqueous Solutions

6. Gases

7. Thermochemistry

8. Electrons in Atoms

9. The Periodic Table and Some Atomic Properties

10. Chemical Bonding l: Basic Concepts

11. Chemical Bonding ll: Valence Bond and Molecular Orbital Theories

12. Intermolecular Forces: Liquids and Solids

13. Spontaneous Change: Entropy and Gibbs Energy

14. Solutions and Their Physical Properties

15. Principles of Chemical Equilibrium

16. Acids and Bases

17. Additional Aspects of Acid–Base Equilibria

18. Solubility and Complex-Ion Equilibria

19. Electrochemistry

20. Chemical Kinetics

21. Chemistry of the Main-Group Elements 1: Groups 1, 2, 13, and 14

22. Chemistry of the Main-Group Elements ll: Groups 18, 17, 16, 15, and Hydrogen

23. The Transition Elements

24. Complex Ions and Coordination Compounds

25. Nuclear Chemistry

26. Structure of Organic Compounds

27. Reactions of Organic Compounds

(Online) 28 Chemistry of the Living State



A  Mathematical Operations

B   Some Basic Physical Concepts

C   SI Units

D  Data Tables

E  Concept Maps

F   Glossary

G  Answers to Practice Examples and Selected Exercises

H  Answers to Concept Assessment Questions