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Organic Chemistry PDF: How to Master the Fundamentals and Applications

I began writing an organic chemistry textbook in 1992. The journey has been long and filled with unexpected twists and turns. I had hoped that I might some day see the book on shelves of campus bookstores, but I realized several years ago that this was unlikely.

As a result, I decided to post it on the internet. I wanted it to be available to students and faculty for studying and teaching organic chemistry. I have now posted 21 of the 23 chapters. I am currently working on Chapter 19 and plan to begin Chapter 6. The figures have been merged with the text in each posted chapter. With the exception of those in Chapter 20, they are presently all hand-drawn.You can access the book directly through the links on this page. They also lead to biographical information about me. The thumbnail version of my biography is "I retired from a 35 year position in the chemistry department at UC Riverside in 1998 and moved to Santa Barbara where I taught part-time at UCSB from 2000 to 2008".My greatest fan and supporter, through all of my efforts to be an author, has been, and continues to be, my wife Pat! Without her encouragement I would have abandoned all of this a long time ago!

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The Author: I was born in Chicago, moved with my parents to Los Angeles at the age of 3, attended Dacotah St. Elementary School, and Gage Junior High School, moved to Whittier, CA, when I was 13, and graduated from Whittier High School in 1955. I did my undergraduate studies at UCLA, earned my Ph.D. at Caltech, was a post-doc at Columbia, and then joined the chemistry faculty at the University of California, Riverside. You can see my professional biography here - Robert Neuman.

The Journal of Organic Chemistry (JOC) welcomes original contributions of fundamental research in all branches of the theory and practice of organic chemistry. In selecting manuscripts for publication, the editors place emphasis on the quality and novelty of the work, as well as the breadth of interest to the organic chemistry community.

Manuscripts with a focus on the following topics along with guidance are included below. The scope of organic chemistry is broader than these several areas of research and the Editorial Board is consistently welcoming and evaluating manuscripts addressing topics in addition to these. Guidelines for specific focus areas are as follows:

(a) Single or multistep synthetic methods manuscripts and total synthesis manuscripts are expected to demonstrate strategies, transformations, or shortened routes to target structures that show conceptual novelty, not merely the extension of previously reported chemistry to a different class of reaction substrates, reagents, or catalysts.

(d) Manuscripts with elements of biological study, analytical chemistry, functional molecules and systems, or materials science should demonstrate novelty in those aspects associated with the organic chemistry portion of the work being reported.

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JOCSynopses are brief focused reviews of current topics of interest to organic chemists written by active researchers that include work from their own laboratories. Manuscripts that describe newly emerging areas of research are encouraged. JOCSynopses are invited by the Editor-in-Chief but voluntary submissions will be considered and screened before a formal review. They are limited to 4,000 words of text, not counting acknowledgments and the list of references, and are limited to no more than 80 references and endnotes. All graphics and tables combined must be able to fit on two standard word- processor pages. Authors are reminded that any graphics that are reduced in size to help adhere to the above length limits need to be fully legible when the page is printed at 100% scale.

Crystallographic Data. Only data and graphics integral to the discussion should be included in the manuscript file. If the data are used solely for confirming compound identity or stereochemistry, a statement in the results and Discussion or Experimental Section that the assignment is supported by an X-ray crystallographic structure determination is usually sufficient.

Those were honestly life savers for me. I really do think every person should purchase your summary sheets because they truly are money well spent. Thank you for helping me earn an A in organic chemistry this semester!

Experienced chemists know that chemistry is all around them. Helping students to see the connections between real life and concepts of organic chemistry is the driving force behind the development of a set of online resources pioneered at UCLA.

One of the most daunting topics for college students is organic chemistry. This topic, along with general chemistry, has been associated with the departure of students from STEM fields. A report from the Ohio University Office of Institutional Research shows that chemistry has one of the lowest first year retention rates. What is it about organic chemistry that makes it so difficult for our students? Several variables are responsible:

Students seldom have an understanding of the important role that organic chemistry plays in society. Understanding and improving this situation is an important goal for all of those involved in the practice of teaching chemistry (Improving Performance in First Year Chemistry Thesis, Texas Tech Univ.; 2005).

We have long thought that students should be taught to enjoy organic chemistry, or perhaps even be inspired to love it. With this in mind, and with the key goal of helping students succeed in their organic chemistry coursework and persevering in STEM subjects in general, we have developed a series of online learning modules we affectionately call BACON. BACON stands for Biology and Chemistry Online Notes and is intended to arm students with organic chemistry knowledge, reinforce key concepts, and illustrate the relevance of organic chemistry in medicine and other aspects of our everyday lives, including popular culture. Herein, we describe the creation and content of BACON, its expansion to engage thousands of students worldwide, and its impact and future prospects.

The creation of BACON has involved a spirit of collaboration, layered with mentoring and learning opportunities. Initially, it involved a close collaboration between a graduate teaching assistant at the time (T.K.S.) and the principal investigator (N.K.G.). Over the course of several lively meetings, we conceived the necessary tutorial topics and key concepts, as well as the connection between organic chemistry and medicine, everyday life and popular culture. The student involved (T.K.S.) had countless opportunities to be creative, hone written and presentation skills, and learn many important aspects of pedagogy.

Here, two additional examples of BACON content are depicted. One connects the concept of electrophilicity to the remarkable antibiotic penicillin and its use on the battlefield in the Second World War. The other demonstrates that enantiomers of a given compound may interact differently with our taste receptors, as is the case for the two enantiomers of the popular artificial sweetener aspartame. Other BACON tutorials feature revolutionary organic materials being used to construct sports arenas, the chemistry behind transition lenses, and numerous examples of how organic chemistry is used to prepare the vast majority of life-saving medicines available to humans.

Encouraged by these reviews, we devoted considerable effort to refining the BACON content the following year and subsequently obtaining additional assessment data beyond satisfaction-based surveys. Further mentoring opportunities were created by the involvement of a second graduate student and three undergraduates, the latter of whom were able to receive UCLA course credit for working on educational resources. The BACON team met weekly as a group and in smaller groups in which the students worked collaboratively through a vertical mentoring system. Ultimately, we were able to refine the prior tutorials, create additional tutorials, introduce several sections on modern organic chemistry research, and introduce quizzes for students to take before and after completing the tutorials. The new and improved version of BACON was used by 1,500 students in 2015 by five classes. Although student quiz scores prior to completing BACON tutorials averaged around 50%, these rose to 90% after the completion of the BACON tutorials. This data in combination with the satisfaction-based surveys encouraged us to further expand the project. was launched in early 2016 and adopted by several schools as part of our initial expansion efforts. This phase proceeded smoothly, so we have now increased the availability of BACON to instructors and students worldwide. So far, the organic chemistry BACON tutorials have been used as supplemental materials for more than 150 courses, spanning at least 75 colleges and universities in the United States, Canada, Europe, Mexico, Japan, India and the Middle East. Nearly 15,000 students have been educated by BACON tutorials to date.

The benefits of the BACON project on STEM education can be seen from several viewpoints. The project has given numerous undergraduate and graduate students the unique opportunity to be involved in the creation of educational content. Writing instructive content of any variety is challenging, but combining this with connections to modern research and popular culture adds significant complexity to the process. What is perhaps most striking about BACON is the sheer number of STEM students that have been reached and can be positively affected in the future. We expect that it will enliven organic chemistry for tens of thousands of students in the upcoming years. We are optimistic that these efforts will ultimately help to shatter the negative perception of organic chemistry amongst students, and perhaps even the general population, over time, while also providing the impetus for other academics to develop BACON-like resources for other STEM fields.


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