Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"We looked at the synthesis of amines, including the CN addition and hydride reduction, LAH reduction of amides, amine nucleophiles with alkyl halides, the Gabriel amine synthesis, and the Hofmann rearrangement. The student had trouble visualizing the mechanism of these reactions. She was very receptive once she saw the mechanism. She has a practice exam that we will go over in detail the next time we meet."
"We went over exam 3 questions. We touched on oxidation, epoxide base, and acid catalyzed opening. We also discussed anti additions and synthesis tips. We then reviewed double bond additions, determining the double bond from E2 using Newman projections, E2 with big and small bases vs E1, using the Sn2 reaction to invert the stereochemistry in synthesis problems, and a bit on organometallics as nucleophiles."
"We went through the student's exam and reviewed most of the questions. The concept for each question was clarified to the student. We also discussed reaction conditions that affect SN2 and E2. We went through the methods for distinguishing whether a reaction would proceed as SN2, E2, SN1, or E1. The student was confident about the topics that were covered."
"We worked on drawing disaccharides, identifying the anomeric carbon, identifying whether the anomeric carbon is a hemiacetal or an acetal, identifying the glycosidic linkage, and how to study for that. We also worked on lipids and phospholipids."
"For this session, more on aldehydes and ketones. More about their oxidation and reduction. However, we did problems involving chirality. The student is having no problem understanding what's going on as we are going through the problems. We ended the session by getting a start on hemiacetals and acetals."
"In our most recent session, the student and I covered topics relating to molecular configuration, specifically Newman projections. There is a certain way one has to approach these problems; you have to think about grasping the molecule, turning it 90 degrees to the right, and looking down a specific bond. She was having trouble picturing it in her mind, but when I explained tricks to better understand molecule configuration, she seemed much more comfortable with the material. I suggested she use a molecular modeling kit, which I will bring to our next session and also use to explain the "chair" and "boat" conformations of cyclohexanes and cyclopentanes. She seems determined to learn this material. I warned her that different conformations of cyclic compounds would show up in her later classes, especially biochemistry."