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ERIC Number: EJ828696
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 17
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Synthesis and Hydrogenation of Disubstituted Chalcones: A Guided-Inquiry Organic Chemistry Project
Mohrig, Jerry R.; Hammond, Christina Noring; Schatz, Paul F.; Davidson, Tammy A.
Journal of Chemical Education, v86 n2 p234-239 Feb 2009
Guided-inquiry experiments offer the same opportunities to participate in the process of science as classical organic qualitative analysis used to do. This three-week guided-inquiry project involves an aldol-dehydration synthesis of a chalcone chosen from a set of nine, followed by a catalytic transfer hydrogenation reaction using ammonium formate and Pd/C. The question each two-student team addresses is "Which of the functional groups of a multifunctional chalcone undergo hydrogenation in the reaction?" The regioselectivity is discovered by IR, NMR, and GC-MS spectrometric analysis. Students present their experimental results and conclusions to the entire lab section in a post-laboratory discussion held during the third week of the project, before their written results are due. The chalcone project was assessed at a large university in a laboratory class of 550 organic chemistry students using graduate-student teaching assistants. Student feedback was heavily favorable, both on the use of spectroscopy to determine the selectivity of hydrogenation and on the value of the post-lab discussion. The TA training and the faculty response are also discussed. (Contains 5 tables.)
Division of Chemical Education of the American Chemical Society. Subscription Department, P.O. Box 1267, Bellmawr, NJ 08099-1267. Tel: 800-691-9846; Tel: 856-931-5825; Fax: 856-931-4115; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A