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CHEM202 Organic Chemistry

Introduction to organic synthesis, the synthesis of carbon frameworks and selective manipulation of functional groups. Stereochemical and structural features of synthesis and the structural characterisation of organic compounds.

CHEM 202 Organic Synthesis focuses on fundamental concepts of organic synthesis. The aims of chemical synthesis, construction of carbon frameworks, stereochemical factors and manipulation of functional groups are presented. The determination of structure using spectroscopic techniques, such as infrared and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, is also addressed. Most concepts are presented in a problem-solving context. CHEM 202 gives an appreciation for obtaining and assessing qualitative information to provide the basis for logically solving problems in organic synthesis.

Paper title Organic Chemistry
Paper code CHEM202
Subject Chemistry
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Second Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,059.15
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $4,627.65

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CHEM 111 or CHEM 191
Recommended Preparation
CHEM 111 and CHEM 191
Schedule C

Dr Bill Hawkins
Tel 64 3 471 6217
Location: Science II, 2n8

Teaching staff

Course Co-ordinator: Dr Bill C. Hawkins
Prof David S. Larsen
Associate Professor Nigel T. Lucas
Dr Alan R. Hayman

Paper Structure

The topics covered in CHEM 202, which build on concepts introduced in CHEM 111 and CHEM 191, are:

  • Structural characterisation and analysis
    • Spectrometric methods for the identification of organic compounds (mass spectrometry, infrared spectroscopy and 13C- and 1H-NMR spectrometry)
    • Analysis of molecular conformation and dynamic processes
  • Structure and stereochemistry
    • Molecular shape
    • Rings
    • Rigid systems
    • Stereochemical control of reactions
  • Functional-group manipulation in aromatic systems
    • Molecular orbital description of benzene and aromaticity
    • Monosubstituted benzenes
    • Substituent effects
    • Disubstituted benzene derivatives
    • Functional group interconversion
    • Nucleophilic aromatic substitution
    • Effect of aromatic rings on functional groups
  • Constructing carbon frameworks
    • Enolate chemistry
    • Main group organometallics (Li, Mg, Cu)
    • P and S-Ylids
Teaching Arrangements
There are three lectures, one tutorial and one 4-hour laboratory class each week.
Bruice, P.Y. Organic Chemistry, (7th Edn), Prentice-Hall. Highly Recommended
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Information literacy, Self-motivation
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes
Learning Outcomes
Expectations at the completion of the paper:
  • An understanding of and an ability to apply the principles of organic synthesis
  • An ability to design syntheses of simple molecules
  • Laboratory skills associated with organic chemistry and structure determination
  • Logical application of chemical knowledge to problem solving
  • Students who are majoring in chemistry will have acquired knowledge and skills that will enable them to proceed to 300- and 400-level papers in chemistry
  • Students not majoring in chemistry will have acquired knowledge and experimental skills that will serve them in other areas of science

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Second Semester

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
L1 Tuesday 11:00-11:50 28-34, 36-41
Wednesday 12:00-12:50 28-34, 36-41
Thursday 12:00-12:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
P1 Monday 14:00-17:50 28-34, 36-41
P2 Tuesday 14:00-17:50 28-34, 36-41
P3 Wednesday 14:00-17:50 28-34, 36-41
P4 Thursday 14:00-17:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
T1 Monday 09:00-09:50 29-34, 36-41
T2 Tuesday 09:00-09:50 29-34, 36-41
T3 Wednesday 09:00-09:50 29-34, 36-41
T4 Thursday 13:00-13:50 29-34, 36-41