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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

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Abstract Volume 21 (2016) pp 68-72

Analogies and Mnemonic Devices for Aha! Moments in the Organic Chemistry Classroom

Patricia J. Kreke*,†, Steven A. Fleming, and Stephanie A. Brouet§

Science Department, Mount St. Mary’s University, Emmitsburg, MD 21727, United States,; Department of Chemistry, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA 19122, United States; §Chemistry Department, Saginaw Valley State University, University City, MI 48710, United States
Received October 28, 2015. Accepted December 11, 2015.

Published: 15 April 2016

Abstract. Analogies are presented for Hydrogen Bonding, Atomic Orbital Hybridization, Acid/Base Reactions, Mechanism Order, Hydrogenation, and Thermodynamic vs. Kinetic Reactions. A Mnemonic device is presented for understanding acidity. These useful tools make difficult concepts accessible to students and are especially applicable to organic chemistry.

Key Words: In the Classroom; organic chemistry; analogies/transfer; humor/puzzles/games; mnemonics/rote learning; acids/bases; addition reactions; hydrogen bonding; mechanisms of reactions; kinetic/thermodynamic reactions

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

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