TCE ForumWhats NewSearchOrders

The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 12 Issue 3 (2007) pp 175-178

Hey; Where did it go? A Guided Inquiry Experiment for the Organic Chemistry Laboratory

Ingrid Montes*and Chunqiu Lai

Department of Chemistry, University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus, P.O. Box 23346, Río Piedras, PR  00931-3346,
Received August 30, 2006. Accepted January 11, 2007.

Published online: 4 June 2007

Abstract. This paper describes a straightforward experiment using the guided-inquiry approach for the extraction technique that is widely used in organic chemistry for purifying reaction products or to isolate natural products. This experiment extends the students' understanding of the acid–base reactions of organic molecules and the relationship of these reactions to chemical structure. It also promotes understanding of extraction separation techniques for organic compounds. The objective of this experiment is to allow the students to conduct an experimental procedure applying an acid–base reaction to the separation of two compounds by extraction techniques. Also, the students will be familiarized with the ferric chloride qualitative analysis test and with different types of filtration. This approach allows students to integrate different concepts learned throughout the general chemistry course in the context of organic chemistry. These concepts include pH, pKa, density, and solubility.

Key Words: Laboratories and Demonstrations; organic chemistry; inquiry-based; teaching/learning theory/practice

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

Article in PDF format (52 KB) HTML format

Supporting Materials:

AStudent's Manual and an Instructor's Manual are available as supporting material (273 KB).

Issue date: June 1, 2007

© The Chemical Educator 1996-2017