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Chem 38/39 Home Page

What's Inside

Welcome to the Chem 38/39/Project Empower Home Page. Within, you will find a collection of materials for use in conjunction with teaching and learning introductory organic chemistry. Each of the topics listed on the Table of Contents page refers to another page within this collection. Each of these pages is a "module," designed to help current students of organic chemistry understand more fully some particular concept, convention, reaction type, reagent class, rule, or technique that has proven troublesome for students in the past. In order to help ensure the comprehensibility and usefulness of the materials contained within each page, the documents were each designed and prepared with the assistance of one or more current second-semester organic chemistry students. Each page includes interactive self-test questions to help readers assess their understanding of the concepts being explained and illustrated.

Please note, however, that this is not a textbook! Coverage of the topics indicated in the Table of Contents is by no means "exhaustive," but rather, it is "illustrative." Students examining these pages should be using them only as an adjunct to their normal textbook and lecture coverage. Furthermore, the material in these pages has been prepared and is being presented under the assumption that the reader will already have a basic knowledge of organic chemistry, and will already be vaguely familiar with the topic at hand. It is our hope that students using these pages -- wherein the material is presented in a somewhat different manner than lecture or textbook presentations -- will get the little "extra push" they need to go from not understanding a particular concept, to the point where they do begin to understand.


Project Empower is a university-wide undertaking of the Pennsylvania State University to create opportunities for instructors to develop, introduce, or enhance the use of computer-based instructional technologies both within and outside the classroom. The pages found within this collection were prepared with the help of a grant through Project Empower, administered by Penn State's Center for Learning and Academic Technologies (C-LAT).

The pages themselves were produced by students enrolled in Chem 39 (second semester introductory organic chemistry) at the Penn State Schuylkill Campus . The textbook used for this course is Organic Chemistry (4th ed.), by John McMurry (Brooks/Cole, 1996). Although most of the text in our Web pages is original, a few sections were copied directly from Organic Chemistry -- for example, most of the definitions found in the Glossary page are direct quotes. (We are grateful to Brooks/Cole for giving their permission for our use of these materials.) All graphics, except where cited, were produced by the Chem 39 students using Chemweb, by SoftShell International.

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Dr. Thomas H. Eberlein
Copyright © 1996-7 Thomas H. Eberlein

Version 1.1.5, 10/5/97