Calculations in Chemistry – An Introduction is a textbook that applies findings of cognitive research to teaching chemistry.

Authored by Don Dahm and Eric Nelson and published by W. W. Norton, Calculations is designed to  serve as a stand-alone text in college Preparatory Chemistry and a supplement in first-semester General Chemistry and GOB Chemistry.


In a recent report in the Journal of  Chemical Education, Dr. Peter Craig at McDaniel College reported on his use of the Calculations text for homework readings and problems in General Chemistry.  In the first year of his adoption, his students’ scores on the ACS General Chemistry Examination rose by over 20 percentiles, to above the 60th percentile.

His “before” (blue) and “after” (red) results are here:


The detailed report by Dr. Craig is at  J. Chem. Educ. 2018, 95 (8), 1434-1435 and at https://confchem.ccce.divched.org/content/2017fallconfchemp5 .

Dr. Craig reported that the homework lessons assisted both well-prepared and less-well-prepared students.

Review Copies

Instructors may request an examination copy of the 24 chapter Calculations paperback from W.W. Norton at

Calculations in Chemistry  –  An Introduction (2nd Edition)

A sample lesson may be reviewed at     GasLawLesson.pdf

For students, the retail cost of the paperback is less than $50 and the eBook can be rented for under $22.  Norton’s SmartWork online homework system is also available for use with the text.

Free Materials

The first two chapters of Calculations, covering exponential notation and the metric system, are posted for free student use — and as easy-to-use assignments from instructors —  at


(Depending on your browser, for links inside these PDF files to work, the files may need to be downloaded and then opened in a PDF reader.)

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