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Required Text: Organic
Chemistry Fifth Edition, J. McMurry bundled with Study
Guide and Solutions Manual for McMurrys Organic Chemistry
Fifth Edition, S. McMurry.
Optional: Darling Molecular Models available in the Varsity
Mart - Highly Recommended!
This course is designed to explore in more details the specifics
of the reactivity of various functional groups. The concepts
learned in Chem 341 will be reitterated throughout the course.
We will learn spectroscopic techniques for characterization
of organic functional groups. The reactivity of conjugated
alkenes and aromatic compounds will be discussed. The chemistry
of alcohols, carbonyl compounds, carboxylic acid derivatives,
and biomolecules will be a large part of the class. We will
also learn how to carry out multistep organic syntheses.
Grading will be based on a 500 point scale (3 - 100 point
exams or 2 - 100 point exams and 5 - 20 point quizzes, and
a 200 point comprehensive final exam). Letter grades will
be assigned according to the following percentiles (subject
85 - 100
B 75 - 84
C 60 - 74
D 45 - 59
Homework is not required for this course. However, suggested
problems will be announced for each chapter. You are strongly
urged to work through the suggested problems as many times
as it takes to become proficient with the material. This will
take a lot of work on your part, but it will be key to your
success in this class.
Three hourly exams (100 points) and a comprehensive final
exam (200 points) will be given on the dates specified in
the attached schedule. There will be no make-up exams without
prior approval of the instructor. If you must miss an exam
due to a scheduled university function (athletic event, etc.),
the instructor must be notified at least two weeks before
the exam date. An alternative exam will only be given prior
to the scheduled exam date. Absolutely no make up exams will
be given after a scheduled exam date. Extraordinary circumstances
(death, hospitalization, etc.) will be evaluated on a case
by case basis.
Six short quizzes (20 points) will be given throughout the
semester. These quizzes will be unannounced and can occur
at any time. They are not directly added to your grade total
for this course, however, they can be beneficial. Quizzes
can only help your grade, not hurt it. The best 5 quizzes
out of the 6 will be totaled. This total will replace your
lowest hourly exam score if it is higher. Under no circumstances
will there be any makeup quizzes. Quiz answers will be posted
on the class web page.
TIPS: Organic chemistry is not hard, but it does
take a lot of work. The most important thing you can do to
be successful in this class is to stay current and keep up.
It just isnt possible to cram for organic chemistry
on the night before an exam. Believe me when I tell you that
studying an hour or two everyday will be much better than
studying for 12 hours on a weekend. It is not easy to absorb
all the material in one sitting, and a daily dose will make
comprehension much easier.
Learning organic chemistry is very much like learning a foreign
language. You need to learn the vocabulary in terms of names,
structures, and types of functional groups. You also need
to learn the rules of grammar. For example, how an alcohol
will react with a halide, etc. Once you learn certain rules,
they can be applied to many different reactions. Thus you
can construct chemical sentences. There will be a certain
amount of memorization required, however, because of the vastness
of the subject, learning general trends and rules will be
are some suggestions:
the chapter ahead before coming to class.
your notes after every class.
the suggested problems as many times as it takes to understand
the material, then try the other problems in your text.
the Study Guide and Solutions Manual - but try to understand
the problems without looking at the answers first.
flash cards to help learn structures, names, and reactions.
a friend or group of students to study with.
a set of molecular models.
instructor and TA office hours.