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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 16 (2011) pp 79-81

The Question-Guided Data-Driven Lecture: A New Approach Applied to the Presentation of the Principles Associated with SN2, SN1, E1, and E2 Reactions

Jennifer M. Teixeira and Robert W. Holman*

Department of Chemistry, Idaho State University, Pocatello, ID, 83201,
Received May 25, 2010. Accepted September 23, 2010.

Published: 25 February 2011

Abstract. In the question-guided data-driven lecture (QGDDL) approach, students are given guiding questions that enable the interpretation of provided data sets so as to derive chemical principles from the data. There is a twofold reason for employing this new pedagogy. The first is to reduce student memorization. Students in a conventional lecture setting are often presented with new principles stated as fact which may, or may not, be followed with data to validate the principle. As a result, independent concepts are relegated to mere stated facts that are memorized rather than derived via the interpretation of data. Thus, students fail to see how the principles were generated and how that the same process can be applied to generate new principles. The second is that the QGDDL is designed to ensure that students leave organic chemistry with a firm grasp of the skills that will enable them to organize and interpret data, equipping them to succeed when challenged with the task of interpreting data in an open-ended research setting. The QGDDL is illustrated here in the lecture treatment of an array of organic chemistry fundamental topics.

Key Words: Laboratories and Demonstrations; analytic chemistry; redox potential; coordination compounds; potentiometric titration; electrochemistry; potentiometry; iron (II); 1; 10 phenanthroline; cobalt (II); cerium (IV)

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

Article in PDF format (23 KB) HTML format

Supporting Materials:

An example QGDDL exercise in the form of a handout that covers SN2, SN1, E1 and E2 content has been crafted. The handout could be used in real time within the lecture as a driving force for developing the principles (our preferred application) or can be used as a homework assignment to review the principles (135 KB).

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