The Central Science
Chemistry is sometimes referred to as “the central science” due to its interconnectedness with a vast array of other STEM disciplines (STEM stands for areas of study in the science, technology, engineering, and math fields).
The basic principles of physics are essential for understanding many aspects of chemistry, and there is extensive overlap between many subdisciplines within the two fields, such as chemical physics and nuclear chemistry.
Mathematics, computer science, and information theory provide important tools that help us calculate, interpret, describe, and generally make sense of the chemical world.
Biology and chemistry converge in biochemistry, which is crucial to understanding the many complex factors and processes that keep living organisms (such as us) alive.
Chemical engineering, materials science, and nanotechnology combine chemical principles and empirical findings to produce useful substances, ranging from gasoline to fabrics to electronics.
Agriculture, food science, veterinary science, and brewing and wine making help provide sustenance in the form of food and drink to the world’s population. Medicine, pharmacology, biotechnology, and botany identify and produce substances that help keep us healthy.
Environmental science, geology, oceanography, and atmospheric science incorporate many chemical ideas to help us better understand and protect our physical world. Chemical ideas are used to help understand the universe in astronomy and cosmology.
What are some changes in matter that are essential to daily life? Digesting and assimilating food, synthesizing polymers that are used to make clothing, containers, cookware, and credit cards, and refining crude oil into gasoline and other products are just a few examples.
As you proceed through your study of chemistry, you will discover many different examples of changes in the composition and structure of matter, how to classify these changes and how they occurred, their causes, the changes in energy that accompany them, and the principles and laws involved.
As you learn about these things, you will be learning chemistry, the study of the composition, properties, and interactions of matter. Understand that the practice of chemistry is not limited to chemistry books or laboratories. It happens whenever someone is involved in changes in matter or in conditions that may lead to such changes.