This is a research-like laboratory experience based on the one posted by Brad Wile (linked below). My students are mostly juniors and have had 2 semesters of organic. This spring they are taking the inorganic laboratory virtually, so I wanted to give them a more exploratory lab experience. Their job will be to watch the YouTube videos to see the synthesis and isolated products, and then propose characterization methods they want to employ to identify both the identity and purity of the compounds.
This is a classic experiment that has been revised and updated numerous times over the years. The experiment can be found in Girolami, Rauchfuss and Angelici, 3rd edition, but that edition removed some purification steps that were present in the earlier edition which has plagued generations of my students with poor resolution of the enantiomers. Marion Cass published a J. Chem. Educ. article in 2015 that included a pH determination and added back in the recrystallization step. This allowed my students to achieve higher yields and greater resolution in Spring 2020.
For our virtual offering of inorganic chemistry laboratory at Harvey Mudd College in Spring 2021, I made some videos and collected some high quality data (IR, 1H NMR, MS, UV-Vis, mp, and X-ray diffraction) that I will make available for my students. The videos show the synthesis of Co and Mn acacs, the difference between as-prepared and recrystallized compounds, making solutions for UV-Vis and Evans method NMR, and making Evans method capillary tubes. The procedures for the synthesis of these compounds is found in Woolins (either the first or second editions).
In this literature discussion, students are asked to explore the chemistry behind a eta-1 to eta-2 linkage photoisomer of sulfur dioxide bound to pentammine osmium. There are questions that tie to chemical structure and the nature of the two bonding modes of the ligand as well as an examination of the spectroscopic properties of the complex in the solid state. Two of the questions ask students to draw some conclusions based on their knowledge of periodic trends and the sigma donor ability of ligands.
This is the link to the first SLiThEr (Supporting Learning with Interactive Teaching: a Hosted, Engaging Roundtable), presented by Kyle Grice and Hosted by Chip Nataro. The SLiThEr was recorded and posted on YouTube (see the web resources link).
This particular roundtable focused on the teaching of a Junior/Senior-level inorganic chemistry laboratory completely online. Kyle presented on what he did in Spring 2020 when he had to pivot quickly to a fully remote modality with only a week or so of planning.
A collection of all of the IONiC VIPEr SLiThErs (Supporting Learning with Interactive Teaching: a Hosted, Engaging Roundtable). These events are short presentations on a topic followed by a period of discussion between the presenter and live participants. Each of these events is recorded and posted to the IONiC VIPEr YouTube Channel.
This literature discussion explores the physical structure, electronic structure, and luminescent properties of a lanthanide coordination complex (dysprosium) through discussion of “Synthesis, Structure, Photoluminescence, and Electroluminescence Properties of a New Dysprosium Complex,” Li et al. J. Phys. Chem.
In this experiment, Students synthesize a Schiff Base and the corresponding aluminum complex to measure fluorescence. The lab provides exposure to air-free synthetic techniques, including the use of Schlenk Line techniques and safe handling of sure-seal bottles. Following data collection, students will be able to explain fluorescence spectroscopy and compare it to absorbance spectroscopy.
I created this activity as a way to get the class involved in creating new, fun ways to teach course concepts (selfishly- that part is for me) and for students to review concepts prior to the final exam (for them). Students use a template to create a 15-20 min activity that can be used in groups during class to teach a concept we have learned during the semester. We then randomly assign the activities and students work in groups to complete them and provide feedback.
The benefits are twofold:
This is the classic Chromatography of Ferrocene Derivatives experiment from "Synthesis and Technique in Inorganic Chemistry" 3rd Ed. (1986 pp 157-168) by R. J. Angelici.