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Introduction to Thermodynamics

Discover the laws of thermodynamics as you learn how to calculate chemical properties and predict chemical reactions.

971 enrolled on this course

Introduction to Thermodynamics
  • Duration

    3 weeks
  • Weekly study

    3 hours

Get an introduction to thermodynamic properties and systems

Curious about thermodynamics or thinking about studying it at university?

This short course from the University of Hull offers a short introduction to the fundamentals of thermodynamics – the branch of physics that deals with heat and its relation to energy.

Learn about the ideal and non-ideal conditions for thermodynamics

Both science and engineering revolve around the nature of energy and energy exchange.

Whether you’re working on a small or industrial scale, it’s important to know the effects of pressure, temperature, and heat, as well as be able to accurately predict what will happen when these states change.

On this course, you’ll get to grips with the ideal and non-ideal conditions for thermodynamics.

You’ll consider how these conditions inform what we know about energy and how they can help us predict whether a chemical reaction will happen.

Explore the physics behind the ideal gas law with experts at the University of Hull

The Department of Chemistry at the University of Hull has contributed to major chemical developments in recent decades, contributing to liquid crystal displays, bioplastics, and smart materials.

The teaching within the department has been recognised by several innovative teaching awards.

Led by academics from this award-winning team, you’ll discover the underlying physics of gas molecules and their related properties.

Study the nature of energy and work

You’ll learn how to calculate the amounts – in moles and mass – of chemical substances, and compare gases in ideal and non-ideal conditions to improve calculation accuracy.

You’ll also learn how to predict a chemical reaction based on energetic properties and temperature, classify reactions as endothermic or exothermic, and predict and classify reactions as spontaneous or nonspontaneous.

What topics will you cover?

  • The ideal gas law – calculation of temperature, pressure and volume
  • Non-ideal conditions (real gases) and compression
  • The nature of energy and work
  • Heat capacity
  • Entropy and free energy

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

Add to Wishlist to be emailed when new dates are announced

Learning on this course

You can take this self-guided course and learn at your own pace. On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Calculate pressures, temperatures and volumes of gases and gas mixtures, and how these will respond to changing conditions
  • Explain the underlying basic physics of gas molecules and their related properties
  • Describe the relationship between thermodynamic properties such as energy, pressure and temperature
  • Calculate the amounts, in moles and mass, of chemical substances based on their gaseous properties
  • Compare gases in ideal and non-ideal (more realistic) conditions to improve the accuracy of calculations
  • Demonstrate whether a chemical reaction will happen based on its energetic properties and temperature
  • Classify chemical reactions as endothermic or exothermic, predict whether they increase or decrease in entropy, and then finally predict and classify reactions as spontaneous or non-spontaneous

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for anyone interested in learning more about thermodynamics.

It will be particularly useful for prospective higher education students wishing to study thermodynamics in the UK, including school/college leavers, those returning to education, and UK based and international students.

Who will you learn with?

Who developed the course?

University of Hull

The University of Hull has been changing the way people think for more than 90 years. As England’s 14th-oldest university, they have a proud heritage of academic excellence, life-changing research and excellent teaching. Their vision is to shape a fairer, brighter and carbon neutral future for all. As the Official University Partner of Team GB they believe extraordinary is in everyone, and together with Team GB, they’re going to help you find it.

  • Established

    1927
  • World ranking

    Top 60Source: Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps, but you can complete them as quickly or slowly as you like
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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