This is the second in a series of posts answering some frequently asked questions about the third edition of Joel Karty’s Organic Chemistry: Principles and Mechanisms. You can see the first post in the series here. This section covers questions from interchapter C through the end of the book. If you have any unanswered questions please … Continue reading FAQ About Joel Karty’s Third Edition: Part 2
FAQ About Joel Karty’s Third Edition: Part 1
This is the first in a series of posts answering some frequently asked questions about the third edition of Joel Karty's Organic Chemistry: Principles and Mechanisms. This section covers topics up to chapter 7, typically taught in the first semester. If you have any unanswered questions please ask them in the comments below. Why is … Continue reading FAQ About Joel Karty’s Third Edition: Part 1
Higher-impact Teaching of Mechanisms in Class: Next Level with Smartwork
Students learn most effectively when they engage earnestly in solving problems, and receive immediate assessment of their work while their thoughts are still fresh. That is why I moved to a flipped classroom years ago, where I have students prepare for each class by reading about a dozen assigned pages from the textbook. In class, … Continue reading Higher-impact Teaching of Mechanisms in Class: Next Level with Smartwork
Consistency is Key
When I talk to other faculty who are using the Karty book I find that we share a love of Chapter 7. In this chapter, the most common elementary steps are presented, those being proton transfer, biomolecular nucleophilic substitution, coordination, heterolysis, nucleophilic addition, nucleophile elimination, biomolecular elimination, electrophilic addition, electrophile elimination, and carbocation rearrangements. Every … Continue reading Consistency is Key
Are pKa’s Necessary to Succeed in the Classroom?
While teaching chapters 17-18, I have shown students the versatility of carbonyls and enolate chemistry. The discussion in Karty’s book is arranged well and does a nice job of spotlighting the chemistry unique to carbonyls, especially as it ranges from selective addition (direct or conjugate) to the use of enolates for alkylation and halogenation. In … Continue reading Are pKa’s Necessary to Succeed in the Classroom?
A, B, C’s of Williamson Ether Synthesis
Williamson ether synthesis at the basic leave is rooted in the conditions of an SN2 reaction. However, students still struggle with the content. I have found myself trying to remind my class of the basics. I am quite fond of the Karty text, and have tried to compliment the book mechanics with some organically-flavored A … Continue reading A, B, C’s of Williamson Ether Synthesis
Nomenclature: Can It Be Taught alongside Mechanisms and Synthesis?
Oftentimes, when I talk with students, I compare the organic chemistry lecture series to a study-abroad experience: the first semester is when students learn the language, and the second semester is when they become immersed in the content. Within this dichotomy, I view nomenclature as a vocabulary-learning process (e.g., ketones, carboxylic acids, alcohols, and so … Continue reading Nomenclature: Can It Be Taught alongside Mechanisms and Synthesis?
How to Help Students See Patterns of Reactivity: My Experience with Karty’s Text
One of my most common refrains in my organic chemistry classes is that students should strive to understand and apply the foundational principles, as opposed to trying to memorize each example reaction that they’ve encountered. I strongly believe that a mechanistic organization discourages the memorization behaviors that students are almost forced to adopt in a … Continue reading How to Help Students See Patterns of Reactivity: My Experience with Karty’s Text
The Features of Resonance and the Teaching Moments They Lead To
We started resonance structures in class today. It wasn’t until after class had ended that I realized how many great teaching moments we had, and I attribute those teaching moments to the way resonance is presented in my textbook. Resonance is introduced in Chapter 1, and students are taught to draw resonance structures by first … Continue reading The Features of Resonance and the Teaching Moments They Lead To
How Do You Keep Content Fresh for Students While Also Maintaining the Integrity of Your Course?
For the professors reading this post, I am writing to gain some insight by asking for your advice. Even though I have been teaching organic chemistry for five years now, I still struggle with how to assess my students’ knowledge. When I was a student, we had a series of free-response/short-answer questions on our exams. I … Continue reading How Do You Keep Content Fresh for Students While Also Maintaining the Integrity of Your Course?