Science, Tech, Math › Science General Chemistry Topics Share Flipboard Email Print kali9 / Getty Images Science Chemistry Basics Chemical Laws Molecules Periodic Table Projects & Experiments Scientific Method Biochemistry Physical Chemistry Medical Chemistry Chemistry In Everyday Life Famous Chemists Activities for Kids Abbreviations & Acronyms Biology Physics Geology Astronomy Weather & Climate By Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Chemistry Expert Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, University of Tennessee at Knoxville B.A., Physics and Mathematics, Hastings College Dr. Helmenstine holds a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences and is a science writer, educator, and consultant. She has taught science courses at the high school, college, and graduate levels. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Updated October 28, 2019 General chemistry is the study of matter, energy, and the interactions between the two. The main topics in chemistry include acids and bases, atomic structure, the periodic table, chemical bonds, and chemical reactions. Acids, Bases, and pH Anchalee Phanmaha / Getty Images Acids, bases, and pH are concepts that apply to aqueous solutions (solutions in water). pH refers to the hydrogen ion concentration, or the ability of a species to donate/accept protons or electrons. Acids and bases reflect the relative availability of hydrogen ions or proton/electron donors or acceptors. Acid-base reactions are extremely important in living cells and industrial processes. Atomic Structure Hero Images / Getty Images Atoms are composed of protons, neutrons, and electrons. Protons and neutrons form the nucleus of each atom, with electrons moving around this core. The study of atomic structure involves understanding the composition of atoms, isotopes, and ions. Electrochemistry Dragan Smiljkovic / Getty Images Electrochemistry is primarily concerned with oxidation-reduction reactions or redox reactions. These reactions produce ions and may be harnessed to produce electrodes and batteries. Electrochemistry is used to predict whether a reaction will occur and in which direction electrons will flow. Units and Measurement barbol88 / Getty Images Chemistry is a science that relies on experimentation, which often involves taking measurements and performing calculations based on those measurements. It is important to be familiar with the units of measurement and the various ways of converting between different units. Thermochemistry mgallar / Getty Images Thermochemistry is the area of general chemistry that relates to thermodynamics. It is sometimes called physical chemistry. Thermochemistry involves the concepts of entropy, enthalpy, Gibbs free energy, standard state conditions, and energy diagrams. It also includes the study of temperature, calorimetry, endothermic reactions, and exothermic reactions. Chemical Bonding SDI Productions / Getty Images Atoms and molecules join together through ionic and covalent bonding. Related topics include electronegativity, oxidation numbers, and Lewis electron dot structure. Periodic Table STEVE HORRELL / SPL / Getty Images The periodic table is a systematic way of organizing the chemical elements. The elements exhibit periodic properties that can be used to predict their characteristics, including the likelihood that they will form compounds and participate in chemical reactions. Equations and Stoichiometry Witthaya Prasongsin / Getty Images It is important to learn how to balance chemical equations and how different factors affect the rate and yield of chemical reactions. Solutions and Mixtures AzmanL / Getty Images An important part of general chemistry is learning about different types of solutions and mixtures and how to calculate concentrations. This category includes topics such as colloids, suspensions, and dilutions.