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1 ORGANIC CHEMISTRY 307 LECTURE NOTES I R. Boikess Welcome to Chemistry 307, Organic Chemistry : Be sure you understand the organizational and administrative aspects of the course. How to Succeed in Organic Chemistry 1. The first few weeks are critical. Learn to understand and write [active skill] the different representations of organic compounds [almost by reflex]. How? Practice 2. Develop a method for systematic memorization [flash cards] 3. Otherwise the approach is similar to Gen Chem: Read the assignment in the book before the lectures, come to lectures, reread the book and the notes, do the homework and do not use the solutions manual until you have given it your all. Make sure your knowledge is active ; use problem solving sessions, help sessions, office hours, etc to get help and answers to your questions. Introduction A. What is Organic Chemistry and why do we spend at least a whole year studying it? Think about all the different substances you encounter every day. Almost every single one is an organic substance. 1. Organic chemistry is defined as the chemistry of compounds of carbon, [oversimplified all organic compounds contain carbon, but not all compounds that contain carbon are organic.] Organic compounds all have at least one C-H bond, except for a few that have only a C-X or a C-C bond. So compounds such as sodium bicarbonate or calcium carbonate are not true organic compounds. Most (but not all) of the organic compounds we will consider in this course consist of only nonmetals. There is, however, a whole important branch of organic called organometallic chemistry, in which the organic compounds also contain at least one metal atom.
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2 2. To some laypersons, organic chemistry has a different connotation, related to “organism” or life. This connotation comes from the fact that virtually every chemical of life is organic, one reason why Organic Chemistry is required for majors in the life sciences. 3. Historical: The Vital Force Theory was disproved in the early 19 th century. Key experiment: urea prepared from inorganic sources, was indistinguishable from urea from animals. 4. Most known chemical compounds are organic and there are many, over 16 million and increasing every day. (40 years ago there were only 1 million) B. What’s so special about C? Why are there so many compounds of C? ` 1 Review Hill, Petrucci, et al (H.P.) 7.8-7.9, 8.1-8.5, 9.1-9.2, 9.6-9.10, 10.3-10.5 (If you used a different Gen Chem text, review the corresponding sections.) 2. Position in the Periodic Table, In the middle of the first row, so it’s small (can get close to other atoms and form multiple bonds) and in the middle of the EN scale. Thus C is good at forming covalent bonds. 3. Has four valence electrons, so it can form 4 covalent bonds by electron
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