Maths for chemists. A chemist's toolkit of calculations

Maths for chemists. A chemist’s toolkit of calculations

Paul Monk and Lindsey Munro

Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press 2010 | 448pp | ?24.99 (SB)

ISBN 9780199541294

Reviewed by Lucy Mitton


Chemistry needs maths - so chemistry students need their own maths book

This is the second edition of a book first published in 2006. It has been completely revised and expanded - this edition has 542 pages compared with the 328 pages in the first edition. 

The reason for the revision and expansion is a response to the sad realisation by the authors that many chemistry students now start university degrees with only maths to GCSE level. This presents a challenge to universities, most of which now provide maths courses to bridge the gap. This book provides excellent material for such courses and also represents a good self-study and revision guide.

More introductory material has been added, especially in the areas of algebra, statistics and calculus, the latter being particularly necessary to cope with such maths-heavy subjects as quantum mechanics.

All the excellent worked examples are based on chemistry, as are the self-test questions and additional problems, thus ensuring the relevance of the content to the undergraduate chemist.

The book is well written throughout and has an admirable step-by-step approach to teaching, which allows the maths-deficient chemistry student the top up his or her knowledge of the subject as painlessly as possible.