Organic Chemistry, Internet/Web-Based Learning, Reactions, Synthesis, Mechanisms of Reactions
This article describes the development and implementation of an open-access organic chemistry question bank for online tutorials and assessments at University College Cork and Dublin Institute of Technology.
SOCOT (Structure-based Organic Chemistry Online Tutorials) may be used to supplement traditional small-group tutorials, thereby allowing students to develop essential problem solving skills in organic chemistry. This online approach may be used for both formative and summative assessment. Students complete one problem set weekly or fortnightly which consists of a number of questions of varying difficulty. A wide range of question types is possible, e.g., prediction of reaction products, identification of reaction intermediates or reagents and retrosynthetic analyses. Questions involving stereochemistry may be also be incorporated. The implementation is described, along with several sample questions and advice for setting questions. This approach is suitable for all levels of undergraduates, from introductory non-majors to final year chemistry students. Student feedback was overwhelmingly positive, and in particular, students found SOCOT to be a very useful tool for review purposes.
Our approach utilises MarvinSketch which is free for academic purposes, and the SMILES algorithm which converts chemical structures into a text string, and is compatible with any learning management system.