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Hi, since we're still doing homework and still haven't been taught this, I'd just say to look it up. Some things we can memorize later on, but for now, I think it is thoughtful to google search this if possible. I hope that if we aren't taught this by the first midterm, that we can be provided with this in test questions. Perhaps Dr. Lavelle may have a more accurate answer.
Yea usually I would just look it up since we have not really gone over determining the states of the atom in class. The states of molecules will generally be gas (g), liquid (l), solid (s), or aqueous (aq) (when the molecule is dissolved in water). Often times the word problem may give hints to what the states of the matters are.
You probably should make an educated guess so that if you are wrong you can learn from your mistakes. Someone asked today in class if we needed to memorize the states of molecules and Dr. Lavelle said that as the year goes on, we will be more familiar with them.
Its not a bad idea to start practicing now so when we get to topics later you will have some foundation, I recommend looking up solubility rules to help determine what is aqueous, other than that diatomics are gaseous, and you can usually determine the rest by knowing the pattern of the elements in the periodic table.
He did mention that he wants us to use the proper states of atoms. I would recommend memorizing some of the basic ones and looking for the trends in the periodic table. (i.e. the diatomic elements are usually gasses, etc.)
For the time being, I would just look up the state of the atom. Professor Lavelle said the more you do these problems throughout the course of the class you will be able to remember the states of many of the molecules.
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