Friday, June 14, 2013

Welcome Oakton CHM 222 Summer Students

Welcome to Organic Chemistry II. My name is Prof. Chad Landrie and I will be your instructor this semester. I’m always especially excited to teach this course because you are not just students, but seasoned, experienced organic chemists (And if you’re not, no worries. I’ll get you caught up in no time). We can finally get to the fun stuff! In many ways I think you’ll find orgo II increasingly interesting as we learn new chemical transformations that allow us to synthesize bigger and more complex molecules and as we investigate essential biomolecules that will be used to describe the biological world around us. Let me begin by introducing the course content to you and then end by giving you a short to-do list that should be completed before the first class.

The content of Organic Chemistry II can be roughly divided into two parts. The first focuses on the reaction chemistry of carbonyl compounds (functional groups with carbon-oxygen double bonds) and the second on the nature and properties of biomolecules. Both parts of the course build upon the essential concepts in Organic Chemistry I, namely: intermolecular forces, chirality, bonding, resonance, and the electronic nature of organic molecules. In orgo I, you’ve used these concepts to explain phenomena such as the trend in boiling points of hydrocarbons and the relative acidity of carboxylic acids; you used your knowledge of organic reactions to design syntheses of small organic molecules; you learned how electrons flow during a chemical reaction and you depicted that information using curved-arrow notation–the infamous mechanism.

In the first half of orgo II we’ll continue to use the essential concepts from orgo I to describe new functional groups and rationalize their reactivity. Unlike orgo I, however, where we only learned a couple carbon-carbon bond-forming reactions (e.g., Diels-Alder, alkyne alkylation), many of the reactions introduced in orgo II will be used to do just that. Transformations such as the Aldol condensation and the Wittig reaction are the Holy Grail of organic chemistry since they allow us to connect carbon fragments together. Those of you interested in synthesis of natural products and pharmaceuticals will find the first half of the course engaging.

The second half of orgo II will appeal to the biologists in the class (most of you!). We will discuss the physical and chemical properties of biomolecules such as amino acids, proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, steroids and nucleic acids including the chemical reactions in which they participate. Notably, many of the chemical reactions of biomolecules are similar to those we explored in the first half of the course. Their chemical reactivity will then allow us to discuss how each of these molecules is synthesized in living systems (biosynthesis) as well as how they are used in the material world (e.g., hydrolysis of lipids to make soap and transesterification of lipids to form biodiesel.) The course culminates with a discussion of how living systems metabolize some of these biomolecules to release energy. Here we’ll focus on the organic transformations occurring in some of the enzyme-mediated processes. Metabolism is a rather innocuous word for a subject of great breadth; in other words, we’ll just survey some of the many reactions covered under this enormous topic.

As you can see, we have quite a bit to explore this semester. You will find the course challenging (that’s good!) but I hope you will also find the content and presentation meaningful for your future careers and academic endeavors. I want all of you to be successful and I will do whatever I can this semester to help you achieve your goals. We will jump right in on our first day of class; so, to help you get ready, I’ve put together a short to-do list. Please work diligently to complete each item before our first class. If you have questions or need help, don’t hesitate to stop by my office, call or send an email.

Dr. L

To-Do List

1. Obtain the required and recommended resources for the course including the textbook, laboratory manual, laboratory notebook and goggles. The full list is in thesyllabus and can also be found below. Decide now whether you intend to purchase your own i>Clicker or whether you will use a loaned i>Clicker that must be returned after each class. For more information, visit the i>Clicker page.

2. Download the 
syllabus from D2L or the Download Center. Read the syllabus carefully to familiarize yourself with the course requirements, schedule and policies. Know what’s going to be expected of you this semester so that you are adequately prepared the first day and can ask informed questions. A hard copy of the syllabus will be distributed during the first day of class. I’ll go over the syllabus briefly the first day, but won’t spend hours reading it to you. It’s better if you come prepared with questions.

3. Familiarize yourself with your 
D2L course (Make sure you’ve been automatically enrolled!). Right now, all that is posted on D2L is the course syllabus. Later I will use this platform to post your course scores and current grade.

4. Familiarize yourself with the course website. I will primarily use the website to disseminate content such the
syllabusschedulescalendars and lecture slides. Important announcements will always be emailed to the class using your preferred email in Banner (login in to myOakton). Most of these announcements can also be found on myblog.

5. Read sections 17.1-17.4 in your textbook. We will cover this material during our first class. I also recommend that you attempt the following problems at the end of Ch. 17: 17.25, 17.28, 17.34a-c, 17.36a-d, 17.39, 17.40, 17.43, 17.50, 17.52, 17.53, 17.61. For problems that you are having trouble with, write a list of questions you would like to discuss during class.

6. Attend the first class! Attendance is required and important for your success. We will be using i>Clickers beginning on the first day of class and your attendance is recorded each time you vote.

7. Get excited! Have fun! Your attitude and zeal this semester are so important to your success. I speak from experience! (Ask me about my history and botany classes in college.)

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Lecture 24 Screencast

I created a screencast for lecture 24 and posted that to my YouTube channel. CHM 223 students should watch this lecture before Monday, April 29 and answer the embedded questions. The quiz on Monday will cover the topics presented in the screencast.

Orgo I (223) Catch Up!

I hope everyone is well and safe from the flood waters that have closed Oakton through this Thursday. While I'm sure you're enjoying your break (I am!), chemistry must march on. I've developed a plan that should put us back on track. Here are the details:

1. Exam 3 is a take-home exam. You may access this now from the Download Center. The exam is due Monday, April 29 at the beginning of class. You are expected to work on the exam individually. Answers should be thorough and reflect the extra time you will have to complete the exam.

2. I've created a screencast of lecture 24 that we were going to cover today. Watch this screencast on my YouTube channel prior to class on Monday. You should also answer the i>Clicker questions within the lecture on notebook paper and include these as part of the Homework 9 and 10 combined assignment. As always, you may download the lecture slides from the course website.

3. Quiz 9 will be on Monday and will cover the material from the screencast lecture.

4. A combined homework 9 and 10 assignment has been posted to the Download center. It is due Wednesday, May 8. Begin working on this now. You will be able to answer many of these questions after you've watched lecture 24.

5. The second synthesis packet has also been posted to the Download center. We will work on these problems together during our final Skillbuilder next Wednesday. You should start working on them now so that you can ask informed questions that day. All of the synthesis questions on the final exam will come directly from the two synthesis packets.

6. There will be no poster assignment as planned. Instead, the ACS exam will be worth 100 points. We will prepare for this exam (multiple choice) in lab next week.

7. The study guide for the final exam (Wednesday, May 8) has been posted to the Download Center. Start studying now! The synthesis packets are a great way to start since these require a cumulative knowledge of the transformations we've discussed. Also, use the homework (old, new and the recommended problems at the top of each assignment) as well as clicker and quiz questions. The final will closely resemble these assignments. By all means, use the lecture slides as a reference, but please do not spend hours "reviewing" by flipping through slides or by rereading the book. This is rarely beneficial. Problems! Problems! Problems! Also, continue to organize reactions into categories that makes sense to you (e.g., all reactions that form ketones). This process is very helpful in making connections between old material and new which will help you remember it better.

8. Our last lab will be Exp. 24-Nitration on Monday, April 29. Please have your prelab completed. Your lab notebook is due on Wednesday, May 1. The notebook will be graded according to the description and rubric discussed at the beginning of semester. Ten random entries will be chosen. I hope to get these back to you on the day of the final (May 8).

9. The online schedule has been updated.

10. I will be available all week on Skype (clandrie; video and chat). Don't hesitate to get in touch if you have questions or need some help. And as always, I check my email about once a minute. ;)

Have a great week. Work hard!

Dr. L