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Ch 8: Thermochemistry & Thermodynamics for the MCAT: Help and Review

About This Chapter

The Thermochemistry and Thermodynamics chapter of this Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) Help and Review course is the simplest way to master these branches of physics. This chapter uses simple and fun videos that are about five minutes long, plus lesson quizzes and a chapter exam to ensure students learn the essentials of thermochemistry and thermodynamics.

Who's it for?

Anyone who needs help preparing for the science section of the MCAT exam will benefit from taking this course. You will be able to grasp the subject matter faster, retain critical knowledge longer and earn better grades. You're in the right place if you:

  • Have fallen behind in understanding how to measure heat transfer in chemical reactions.
  • Need an efficient way to learn about thermochemistry and thermodynamics.
  • Learn best with engaging auditory and visual tools.
  • Struggle with learning disabilities or learning differences, including autism and ADHD.
  • Experience difficulty understanding your teachers.
  • Missed class time and need to catch up.
  • Can't access extra MCAT science preparation resources at school.

How it works:

  • Start at the beginning, or identify the topics that you need help with.
  • Watch and learn from fun videos, reviewing as needed.
  • Refer to the video transcripts to reinforce your learning.
  • Test your understanding of each lesson with short quizzes.
  • Submit questions to one of our instructors for personalized support if you need extra help.
  • Verify you're ready by completing the Thermochemistry and Thermodynamics chapter exam.

Why it works:

  • Study Efficiently: Skip what you know, review what you don't.
  • Retain What You Learn: Engaging animations and real-life examples make topics easy to grasp.
  • Be Ready on Test Day: Use the Thermochemistry and Thermodynamics chapter exam to be prepared.
  • Get Extra Support: Ask our subject-matter experts any relevant question. They're here to help!
  • Study With Flexibility: Watch videos on any web-ready device.

Students will review:

In this chapter, you'll learn the answers to questions including:

  • How do state functions apply in thermochemistry?
  • What happens during endothermic and exothermic reactions?
  • How does enthalpy describe how energy moves in chemical and physical processes?
  • What do the terms enthalpy, entropy and free energy mean in relation to intermolecular interactions?
  • How is calorimetric science used to calculate heat capacity and transfer?
  • What are the first, second and zeroth laws of thermodynamics?
  • How does heat transfer occur in conduction, convection and radiation?
  • What do pressure-volume (PV) diagrams look like?

14 Lessons in Chapter 8: Thermochemistry & Thermodynamics for the MCAT: Help and Review
State Functions in Thermochemistry

1. State Functions in Thermochemistry

This lesson defines state functions and explains why state functions are so useful in thermochemistry and thermodynamics. You'll also see a few examples of common state functions.

Endothermic and Exothermic Reactions

2. Endothermic and Exothermic Reactions

Explore a chemical reaction at the molecular level. Learn about exothermic and endothermic reactions, what they look like and what happens when they occur. Understand enthalpy and how you can use it to predict whether a reaction will be exothermic or endothermic.

Enthalpy: Energy Transfer in Physical and Chemical Processes

3. Enthalpy: Energy Transfer in Physical and Chemical Processes

This video explores the relationship between chemistry and energy. We learn the general properties of energy and the concepts of temperature and heat. We will learn about energy flow and consider the enthalpy change during chemical reactions.

Using Hess's Law to Calculate the Change in Enthalpy of a Reaction

4. Using Hess's Law to Calculate the Change in Enthalpy of a Reaction

Want to make sure you don't blow yourself up during a chemical reaction? This lesson will help you avoid this by teaching you Hess's Law. This is one way to calculate the heat transferred, or enthalpy change, of a chemical reaction.

The Relationship Between Enthalpy (H), Free Energy (G) and Entropy (S)

5. The Relationship Between Enthalpy (H), Free Energy (G) and Entropy (S)

In this video lesson, we'll study free energy (G) and its relationship to enthalpy, entropy and temperature. You'll also learn why free energy (G) is the single most useful criterion for predicting the spontaneity and direction of a chemical reaction.

Calorimetry: Measuring Heat Transfer and Heat Capacity

6. Calorimetry: Measuring Heat Transfer and Heat Capacity

This video lesson explains the technique of calorimetry used to measure heat transfer in chemical reactions. You will see how different materials have different specific heat capacities. You will learn how to carry out heat calculations using a simple equation.

How to Calculate Specific Heat Capacity for Different Substances

7. How to Calculate Specific Heat Capacity for Different Substances

This lesson describes specific heat capacity and explains how the specific heat capacity of water helps to maintain a relatively constant temperature in nature. Learn how to identify the specific heat capacity of other common materials and how to calculate specific heat capacity with an experiment.

The Laws of Thermodynamics

8. The Laws of Thermodynamics

Learn about the first and second laws of thermodynamics. Find out how energy is generated, how it converts from one form to another, and what happens to energy in a closed system.

First Law of Thermodynamics: Law of Conservation of Energy

9. First Law of Thermodynamics: Law of Conservation of Energy

This video describes the first law of thermodynamics. Several examples of the application of this law are discussed. The significance of the law and its practical application are discussed as well.

Second Law of Thermodynamics: Entropy and Systems

10. Second Law of Thermodynamics: Entropy and Systems

In this lesson, we'll learn about the second law of thermodynamics. By studying this law, you'll understand how energy works and why we're all moving towards eventual chaos and disorder.

Mechanisms of Heat Transfer: Conduction, Convection & Radiation

11. Mechanisms of Heat Transfer: Conduction, Convection & Radiation

There are three main ways that heat is transferred between substances or objects. In this video lesson you'll learn about each one, and identify the differences between them.

Spontaneous Reactions & Gibbs Free Energy

12. Spontaneous Reactions & Gibbs Free Energy

In this lesson, we will learn about spontaneous reactions and how we can use Gibbs free energy to predict them. We will remind ourselves about enthalpy and entropy and discuss the importance of temperature and spontaneity.

The Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics

13. The Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics

After watching this video, you will be able to state the zeroth law of thermodynamics, what it means, and why it is important. A short quiz will follow.

Reduction in Chemistry: Definition & Overview

14. Reduction in Chemistry: Definition & Overview

When atoms are greedy for electrons, they steal them from other atoms. This reduces their charge. You can see the effects of reduction in the world around you. Learn more about reduction in chemistry and see some examples of it.

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Other Chapters

Other chapters within the MCAT Prep: Help and Review course

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