Using structure-based organic chemistry online tutorials with automated correction for student practice and review

O'Sullivan, T. P. and Hargaden, G. C. (2014) Using structure-based organic chemistry online tutorials with automated correction for student practice and review. Journal of Chemical Education, 91 (11). pp. 1851-1854. ISSN 00219584 (ISSN)

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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; for example, 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 creating questions. This approach is suitable for all levels of undergraduates, from introductory nonmajors to final-year chemistry students. Student feedback was overwhelmingly positive, and in particular, students found SOCOT to be a quite useful tool for review purposes. Our approach uses 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.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Export Date: 23 February 2015; CODEN: JCEDA; Correspondence Address: O'Sullivan, T.P.; Department of Chemistry and School of Pharmacy, Analytical and Biological Chemistry Research Facility, University College CorkIreland; References: McDonnell, C., Brouwer, N., Online Support and Online Assessment for Teaching and Learning Chemistry (2009) Innovative Methods of Teaching and Learning Chemistry in Higher Education, pp. 123-152. , Eilks, I. and Byers, B. Royal Society of Chemistry: Cambridge, U.K; Seery, M.K., Donnelly, R., The Implementation of Pre-Lecture Resources to Reduce In-Class Cognitive Load: A Case Study for Higher Education Chemistry (2012) Br. J. Educ. Technol., 43 (4), pp. 667-677; Brooks, D.W., Technology in Chemistry Education (1993) J. Chem. Educ., 70 (9), pp. 705-707; Agapova, O., Jones, L., Ushakov, A., Ratcliffe, A., Varanka-Martin, M.A., Encouraging Independent Chemistry Learning through Multimedia Design Experiences (2002) Chem. Educ. Int., 3 (1), p. 8; (2014),, Further information, including sample videos, is available at the SOCOT Home Page. (accessed Aug)Freasier, B., Collins, G., Newitt, P., A Web-Based Interactive Homework Quiz and Tutorial Package to Motivate Undergraduate Chemistry Students and Improve Learning (2003) J. Chem. Educ., 80 (11), pp. 1344-1347; Eichler, J.F., Peeples, J., Online Homework Put to the Test: A Report on the Impact of Two Online Learning Systems on Student Performance in General Chemistry (2013) J. Chem. Educ., 90 (9), pp. 1137-1143; Richards-Babb, M., Jackson, J.K., Gendered responses to online homework use in general chemistry (2011) Chem. Educ. Res. Pract., 12 (4), pp. 409-419; Wood, C., The Development of Creative Problem Solving in Chemistry (2006) Chem. Educ. Res. Pract, 7, pp. 96-113; A Scientific Approach to the Teaching of Chemistry. What Do We Know about How Students Learn in the Sciences, and How Can We Make Our Teaching Match This to Maximise Performance? (2008) Chem. Educ. Res. Pract., 9, pp. 51-59; Duckett, S.B., Garratt, J., Lowe, N.D., Key Skills: What do Chemistry Graduates Think? (1999) Univ. Chem. Educ., 3 (1), pp. 1-7; Ruder, S.M., Straumanis, A.R., A Method for Writing Open-Ended Curved Arrow Notation Questions for Multiple-Choice Exams and Electronic-Response Systems (2009) J. Chem. Educ., 86 (12), pp. 1392-1396; Weiinger, D., SMILES, a Chemical Language and Information System. 1. Introduction to Methodology and Encoding Rules (1988) J. Chem. Inf. Comput. Sci., 28 (1), pp. 31-36; (2014),, ChemAxon-Chemoinformatics platforms and desktop applications. (accessed Aug)UR -
Uncontrolled Keywords: First-Year Undergraduate/General; Internet/Web-Based Learning; Mechanisms of Reactions; Organic Chemistry; Reactions; Synthesis; Upper-Division Undergraduate
Depositing User: National Forum
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2015 19:43
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2015 19:47

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