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Sept 30, 2016
Today's lecture is late because unfortunately, the recording of todays lecture was lost. I recorded an alternate version, which is now on the recorded lectures page.  More...
Sept 30, 2016
Office hours tomorrow, Saturday Oct 1st, will take the form of a review session, 3:00 - 4:00 PM. It will be held in PS H-132. Sometimes the doors to the PS building are locked on the weekends, I will try to remember to open the doors at the end of H-wing. The review session will be recorded in the same way as the lectures, and posted online later in the day.

You can also watch the review session "live" over the internet using Adobe Connect, click HERE. Login to the Connect site as a guest.

The subject of the review session will be conformations of alkanes and cycloalkanes.

Sept 29, 2016
To see the answer key to Quiz #6, Click HERE.
To see the new Quiz #7, Click HERE.
The deadline for submitting Quiz #7 is Sunday, Oct 2nd, 6PM.

Sept 28, 2016
Apologies, there was a typo on the syllabus and on the website regarding my Wednesday office hours. On Wednesdays they are 8:30AM - 9:30AM, not 8:30PM - 9:30PM. I apologize to those students who tried to attend office hours this evening!
Sept 28, 2016
Alkane conformations involve an understanding of structures in 3-D, which is not easy to do on paper. Therefore, here are several short movies that illustrate the 3-D structures of alkanes, and also show you how to solve some problems related to these 3-D structures. First, how to use the HGS model kit:
How to Use the HGS Model Kit

Now some to help understand the conformations of alkanes and how to properly draw Newman projections and sawhorse structures:
Steric versus Repulsion Effects in Alkane Conformations
Newman Projection to 3-D or Sawhorse Structure
Newman Projection to 3-D or Sawhorse Structure using a Model Kit

Now, cyclohexane chairs and interconversions:
Chair-chair interconversion for cis-1,4-dimethylcyclohexane (used with kind permission of Professor Stefan Immel, Technical University of Darmstadt)
Cyclohexane
Substituted Cyclohexane
Chair Interconversion Misconceptions
Building Cyclohexane Using a Model Kit
Chair-to-Chair Interconversion Using an HGS Model Kit

Sept 25, 2016
The results for midterm #1 are now posted on the Exam Scores page.  More...
Sept 24, 2016
Unfortunately, the recording of todays review session was lost, however, I have a recording of essentially the same review session from Fall 2014 that is now posted on the recorded lectures page. Apparently the weather was bad that day in 2014!  More...
Sept 23, 2016
Office hours tomorrow, Saturday Sept. 24th, will take the form of a review session, 3:00 - 4:00 PM. It will be held in PS H-132. Sometimes the doors to the PS building are locked on the weekends, I will try to remember to open the doors at the end of H-wing. The review session will be recorded in the same way as the lectures, and posted online later in the day.

You can also watch the review session "live" over the internet using Adobe Connect, click HERE. Login to the Connect site as a guest.

The subject of the review session will be resonance.

Sept 23, 2016
The new Quiz #6 has been posted, Click HERE. The deadline for submission is Sunday Sept. 25th, 6PM.
Sept. 23, 2016
My version of the Resonance notes have been loaded on the lecture notes page. You can use these to make sure that your notes have no errors or gaps.  More...
Sept 18, 2016
To see the answer key to Quiz #5, Click HERE.
Sept. 18, 2016
My version of the Bonding notes have been loaded on the lecture notes page. You can use these to make sure that your notes have no errors or gaps.  More...
Sept 17, 2016
The review session from today has now been posted on the recorded lectures page.  More...
Sept 16, 2016
I just loaded some more practice exams onto the homework site for midterm #1, there is a now new category of problems with the Heading Practice Exams 1. There are 3 practice exams there and in each the problems are exam type and are mixed together exam style.  More...
Sept 16, 2016
The review session from today has now been posted on the recorded lectures page.  More...
Sept 15, 2016
Question #4 is DELETED from Quiz #5, all answers, A, B, C, D will be considered correct.
Sept 15, 2016
There will be TWO pre-test review sessions, the first will be Friday, 3:30PM - 5PM in LS A-191 (our regular classroom). The second will be Saturday 3PM - 5PM, again in LS A-191. Both will cover different material and both will be recorded. You will not be able to watch "live" since I can only do that from PS H-132.
Sept 15, 2016
Memorizing Stuff: Although we try to minimize it in this class, there will be some memorization in just about any college course. For midterm #1 you will need to memorize the names of the functional groups. You could do this the standard way, by making flash cards or equivalent, but I suggest a different approach.
Memorization using flash cards etc hard and mind numbing, starting this way is a grim way to learn this stuff. Instead, I suggest writing a summary of the functional groups out on a sheet of paper (making such a summary is good practice on its own). THEN, with this sheet in front of you, work as many functional group problems as you can with your sheet in FRONT OF YOU. This way you will get through many more problems without getting stuck, and you will be using functional groups IN CONTEXT, at the same time as learning how to solve functional group problems, rather than trying to blindly memorize them. This is a MUCH better way of learning material like this, learn in the context where you will have to use the information.
Do this when you solve ALL KINDS of ochem problems, circle the functional groups in every structure you draw as you work problems. In this way you will learn many of the functional groups without having to memorize them.
FINALLY, a day or so before the exam, test yourself on the functional groups by e.g. covering the names on the sheet you made, and you find that you have learned most of them and there are only one or two left over that you will then have to brute force memorize for the test. In this way you will learn how to solve problems and minimize memorization at the same time.
The ones you have to memorize at the last minute you will forget again after the test, but I don't care, since by the end of the course you will know them all because you have used them all in relevant contexts.

Sept 15, 2016
Midterm #1: The topics for midterm #1 will be the first sections of the notes only, Bonding, it will not cover Resonance or Alkanes. This is how I suggest you study for the midterm:
Don't start by reviewing lectures or reading the notes. ONLY review lectures or read the notes if you need to to catch up on specific topics that you find you don't know by doing the homework.
Work as many of the homework problems as you can, and don't wait until the weekend, by then it will be too late, you can't study for an organic chemistry test a couple of days before it.
After you have completed the homework problems, THEN, try the old exams and practice exams that are posted on the website. You may be tempted to start with the old exams, but I advise against that since the exam questions do not have the same kind of explanations that the homework problems do, you will get a problem wrong and you will not know why. However, it is important to do some problems in the context of the exams so that you learn what the structure of the exams is and what kind of questions are asked.
If you don't understand something then ASK as soon as possible. It is difficult for me to answer some chemistry questions by email, but I can try. Even better, ask on the class Facebook page so that the answer I give will be seen by more than just you. Also, there are former students if mine on the Facebook page who may be able to give you a good answer essentially 24 hours a day.
Remember, the ONLY way that you learn organic chemistry is by doing PROBLEMS! But if you can't do the problems because you don't understand, then please don't be afraid to ask!  More...

Sept 14, 2016
Technical problems resulted in a delay in posting todays lecture, apologies, it is now on the recorded lectures page.  More...
Sept 13, 2016
To see the answer key to Quiz #4, Click HERE.
To see the new Quiz #5, Click HERE.
The deadline for submitting Quiz #4 is Sunday, Sept 18th, 6PM.

Sept 10, 2016
The review session from today has now been posted on the recorded lectures page.  More...
Sept 9, 2016
Office hours tomorrow, Saturday Sept. 10th, will take the form of a review session, 3:00 - 4:00 PM. It will be held in PS H-132. Sometimes the doors to the PS building are locked on the weekends, I will try to remember to open the doors at the end of H-wing. The review session will be recorded in the same way as the lectures, and posted online later in the day.

You can also watch the review session "live" over the internet using Adobe Connect, click HERE. Login to the Connect site as a guest.

The subject of the review session will be stereoisomerism and polar bonds.

Sept 6, 2016
The Current Points page been updated with your scores for the first 3 quizzes, Click HERE. Please check to make sure there are no errors.
Sept 6, 2016
To see the answer key to Quiz #3, Click HERE.
To see the new Quiz #4, Click HERE.
The deadline for submitting Quiz #5 is Sunday, Sept 11th, 6PM.

Sept 3, 2016
The review session from today has now been posted on the recorded lectures page.  More...
Sept 3, 2016
This week in lecture I mentioned a book that introduces quantum mechanics in the best way that I have yet found. If you are interested, it is available for just a few dollars on Amazon: 30 Years That Shook Physics.
Sept 2, 2016
Office hours tomorrow, Saturday Sept. 3rd, will take the form of a review session, 3:00 - 4:00 PM. It will be held in PS H-132. Sometimes the doors to the PS building are locked on the weekends, but usually one of the doors on Palm Walk are open, and I will try to remember to open the doors at the end of H-wing. The review session will be recorded in the same way as the lectures, and posted online later in the day.

You can also watch the review session "live" over the internet using Adobe Connect, click HERE. Login to the Connect site as a guest.

The subject of the review session will be molecular orbitals.

Sept 2, 2016
As my graduate student Ara announced in class this week, we are inviting you to participate in a chemical education project this semester. We want to understand the factors that contribute to success in organic chemistry so that we can learn how to teach you better. To participate in the project you must complete TWO surveys, one at the start of the semester and another (much shorter one) at the end.

If you participate in this project you will receive 1% of the available class points as extra credit towards your grade.

Participation is completely voluntary and anonymous, if you choose to participate you can withdraw at any time. If you do not wish to participate and still want to earn the 1% extra credit you can do so by sending an email to Dr. Gould who will supply you with some questions to answer essay-style.

To access the start of semester survey, click HERE. To participate you MUST COMPLETE THIS START OF SEMESTER SURVEY by the end of the day FRIDAY Sept 9th, i.e. 1 week from now. ONCE YOU START THE SURVEY YOU SHOULD FINISH IT! If you start, then leave it for a while, and then come back then the system will time you out and you will have to start all over again.

We thank you for helping us to learn how to teach better.

Sept 1, 2016
We are starting to look at aspects of molecular structure that are 3-dimensional, and are therefore a bit harder to understand, especially pi-bonding. The best way to visualize these things is to make a model, either mechanically or in a computer, as shown in the following small videos (click the titles in bold below).
Pi-Bonds and Anti-Bonds
Visualizing the sigma- and pi-bonds in ethylene using the HGS model kit
Pi-Orbitals in Triple Bonds

Here are some more very small videos that attempt to illustrate some of the 3-D aspects of molecular structure that we have discussed in class recently.
Tetrahedral Geometry
Trigonal Planar Geometry
Linear Geometry
Rotation and Single Bonds

Sept 1, 2016
To see the answer key to Quiz #2, Click HERE.
Remember, question #s 6 and 7 were pulled from this quiz, all answers to these questions will get 1 quiz point.

To see the new Quiz #3, Click HERE.
The deadline for submitting Quiz #3 is Sunday, Sept 4th, 6PM.

Your scores for the first 2 quizzes will be posted in this website later this week.

Aug 30, 2016
The quiz submit page is fixed, you can now submit Quiz #2. The deadline is 6PM, Wednesday August 31st.

If you already submitted Quiz #2 you can check that it has been submitted correctly by going to the Quiz Submit page and clicking the "Click HERE to check your submitted Quizzes" link at the bottom of the screen, it will show you all of your quiz submissions together with date/time etc.

Apologies for the inconvenience, I hope this is the last problem we have this semester

Thanks for your patience!

Aug 29, 2016
So, my web person who can fix the quiz problem seems to be out of town today, and so I can't fix it so that you can submit Quiz #2. Therefore, I will push back the deadline for Quiz #2 until 6PM WEDNESDAY August 31st.

Apologies, it isn't usually like this, we normally have a working quiz system, we have an unfortunate series of events this semester.

Thanks for your patience!

Aug 28, 2016
A little late, and I apologize for this, but you can obtain a pdf version of the class gapped notes for use on an iPad or equivalent instead of buying the hard copy at the bookstore. If you would like to get the pdf version, click HERE.
Aug 28, 2016
Now that we are into the semester properly, it will be useful to revisit the homework site and remind you how it works and what its purpose is. For a short video on this, click HERE.
Aug 28, 2016
The wonderful start to the semester continues with another technical problem. I was unable to record the review session yesterday, the recorder software was changed over the summer, nobody told me, you know....

BUT, the equivalent review session I recorded at this time last year addresses much of the same material, conversions between line-angle and condensed formulas etc., and is basically just as relevant, and so to see that one, click HERE.

Normal service will be resumed next week! By the way, thanks to everyone who came and those who attended "online" yesterday, was a great turnout for a Saturday so early in the semester!

Aug 27, 2016
THE QUIZ SUBMIT PAGE won't be fixed today, the deadline for Quiz #2 is now officially extended until TUESDAY, August 30th, 6:00PM, apologies for the inconvenience.

Also, question 7 on the quiz involves stereoisomers, which I had forgotten that we hadn't covered when I posted it, and so question 7 will be pulled from the quiz, submit any answer, A, B, C or D are it will be graded correct.

AND, question #6 is ambiguous, and so it will ALSO be pulled from the quiz, again, answer A, B, C or D, all will be graded correct.

Quiz #3 will be error and problem free, I promise!

Aug 27, 2016
Unfortunately I was unable to record the review session today, Tomorrow I will record something equivalent and post it here, look for an announcement.
Aug 27, 2016
THE QUIZ SUBMIT PAGE IS BROKEN, WE ARE TRYING TO FIX IT, IF IT IS NOT FIXED BY TOMORROW I WILL PUSH BACK THE SUBMIT DEADLINE FOR QUIZ #2, APOLOGIES FOR THE INCONVENIENCE!
Aug 26, 2016
Office hours tomorrow, Saturday Aug 27th, will take the form of a review session, 3:00 - 4:00 PM. It will be held in PS H-132. Sometimes the doors to the PS building are locked on the weekends, but usually one of the doors on Palm Walk are open, and I will try to remember to open the doors at the end of H-wing. The review session will be recorded in the same way as the lectures, and posted online later in the day.

You can also watch the review session "live" over the internet using Adobe Connect, click HERE. Login to the Connect site as a guest.

The subject of the review session will be organic structures.

Aug 26, 2016
Reminder, Quiz #1 is due today, 11:59PM. For additional instructions on how to submit the quiz and how quizzes work in his class, click HERE.
Aug 24, 2016
The Quiz Submit link is now open, all student should be able to submit quizzes. For instructions on how to do this, click HERE.

Quiz #1 is due before 11:59PM, Friday August 26th. Quiz #2 is due 6PM Sunday August 28th. If you are unable to submit a quiz for any reason, please don't ask me to submit it for you, I will not be able to since the quiz system automatically switches over to the new quiz. This is what the dropped quizzes are for.

Aug 24, 2016
To see Quiz #2, click HERE. Quiz #2 is the first chemistry quiz. The deadline for submission of Quiz #2 is 6:00PM, Sunday August 28th. The Quiz Submit page will open TOMORROW, Thursday August 25th, look for an announcement on this page. When the Quiz Submit link opens you will be able to submit Quiz #1 (see below), and after the Quiz #1 deadline (11:59PM, Friday August 26th) you will be able to submit Quiz #2. You will be able to submit the quizzes as many times as you like until the relevant deadline.
Aug 24, 2016
The third lecture has now been posted on the Recorded Lectures page. From now on I will not post an announcement about lecture posting, please just check the recorded lectures page for new lecture postings.  More...
Aug 22, 2016
The second lecture has now been posted on the Recorded Lectures page.  More...
Aug 20, 2016
Information on honors contracts for this class have now been posted.  More...
Aug 19, 2016
As mentioned in the syllabus video, I have office hours on Saturday afternoon all semester EXCEPT, tomorrow, Saturday August 20th, since I have another commitment. Normal Saturday service will resume next week.
Aug 19, 2016
The homework site is NOW operational, access the site via the Homework button/link at the top of this page. For information on how to use it, Click HERE. If you tried to register already and got sent to the wrong site, don't worry, when the new site is activated you can register for the new site using the login and password you already created.
Aug 19, 2016
The first lecture has now been posted on the Recorded Lectures page.  More...
Aug 18, 2016
Quiz #1 has been posted, Click HERE. It is a syllabus quiz. The deadline for submission of Quiz #1 is 11:59PM, Friday August 26th, HOWEVER, you will not be able to submit the quiz until after the drop/add deadline, so please don't click the Submit Quiz link above, it will not work until I make an announcement here and/or in class.

Quizzes will be posted here, on the main page, as pdf files as above for Quiz #1. You work on the quiz on your own and submit the answers via the Quiz Submit link above (after it is activated). More details about quiz submission will be provided later.

Aug 18, 2016
To get a copy of the syllabus for this class, click HERE.

This class uses "gapped notes". You MUST buy a copy of these from the bookstore, they take the place of a textbook, which is not required for this class. If you need a "starter" copy of the notes for the first lecture or two, you can click HERE to download them. This short set will only last 1 - 2 lectures, after that you will need your own copy of the complete set.

Aug 18, 2016
For a video introduction to the class, the syllabus and how everything is supposed to work this semester, click HERE. This introduction is relevant to BOTH the regular/onground and also the online/hybrid students.

For a video introduction specifically for online/hybrid class students, click HERE.

Aug 18, 2016
The class has a Facebook page, click HERE.
Aug 16, 2016
This class does NOT use a textbook. In the past when I have required or recommended a textbook most students reported that they never used it. This does not mean that you cannot use a textbook, of course, by all means use a textbook if it helps you to learn. A good textbook is Organic Chemistry 7th Edition, by Paula Bruice, however, just about all organic textbooks are the same, you could use any of them as a reference, and used older editions of textbooks from Amazon are a fantastic deal. For example, I have see a 5th edition of the Bruice textbook on Amazon for just a few dollars. It should be fairly easy for you to find the appropriate reading and problems that relate to the material that we are covering in any textbook, although some textbooks do not cover pericyclic reactions, a second semester topic (the Bruice one does).

Many students will ask me if they should get the textbook. Unfortunately I am not able to give a satisfactory answer, since different students have very different needs. Some students really need to study from a textbook and appreciate learning a topic from a different perspective. Some students want a permanent textbook to study for the MCAT, for example. You have to make your own decision on this I am afraid. However, as mentioned above, I have found that most students in my classes tend not use the textbook.

Note that the lab is a separate course, check your lab course website for requirements for that course.


Aug 18, 2016
A Molecular Model Kit, IS REQUIRED for CHM 233. The best kit is the HGS 1013/1013A Organic Chemistry Set for Students (click here). This kit is available from the bookstore. There is a more sophisticated version of the HGS kit, 1003 Organic Chemistry set C, however, the less expensive 1013 version works well enough for CHM 233. An HGS kit is available from Amazon, for ca. $20. Do not buy the Prentice Hall Molecular Model Set For Organic Chemistry (or other kits like it) (click here), it makes pretty models but is terrible for CHM 233.
Aug 18, 2016
It is not possible for me to give an override into this class since I am not allowed to override the reserved seat assignments or the room capacity. If you really want to get into this class, come during the first week and be persistent in trying to register online. There will be a lot of drop/add activity during the first week, persistence usually pays off. Remember that the class is offered both in the regular onground lecture format and also as an online/hybrid version. Both classes are basically identical. If you are registered for the online/hybrid class you are welcome to attend lecture with the regular class.