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ZingPath: The Mole

The Concept of Moles

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The Mole

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Lesson Focus

The Concept of Moles


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You will investigate how to determine the number of particles in a sample based on measurements of mass and volume.

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Now You Know

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:

  • Define a mole as the amount of substance that contains as many atoms or molecules as there are atoms in 12 grams of carbon.
  • Define Avogadro’s number as 6.02 x 1023 and as equal to the number of particles in a mole.
  • Correctly predict the mass of a reactant when given a chemical equation with two reactants, the molecular mass of the reactants, and the mass of one reactant.
  • Correctly predict the moles of a reactant when given a chemical equation with two reactants and the number of moles of one reactant.
  • Explain that the molecular mass or formula mass is the sum of all the atomic masses in a compound.

Everything You'll Have Covered

The mole is the SI unit used to measure the amount of representative particles in a substance. This unit is used to represent a specific number of objects, similar to the term dozen, representing 12 objects. Scientists measure small particles like molecules and atoms in moles. There are representative particles (molecules or atoms) in one mole of any substance. This number is known as Avogadro's number. The equality, 1 mole = particles, allows for the conversion of particles (molecules or atoms) to moles. Further, because it has been observed that 12 g of carbon-12 is equivalent to atoms of carbon-12, the mass of a mole of any substance is approximately equivalent to its average atomic mass from the Periodic Table. With the unit of the mole, conversions of mass to particles are possible when knowing the mass of the substance and its chemical composition. With this information, the amount of representative particles in any substance can be calculated.

Tutorial Details

Approximate Time 20 Minutes
Pre-requisite Concepts Learners should be familiar with the chemical equation, conservation of mass, kinetic molecular theory, and phases of matter.
Course Chemistry
Type of Tutorial Concept Development
Key Vocabulary Avogadro’s number, molar mass, mole