Submitted by Matthew Riehl / Minnesota State University, Mankato on Thu, 06/30/2016 - 20:59
My Notes

The article “Synthesis and Reactivity of Oxorhenium(V) Methyl, Benzyl, and Phenyl Complexes with CO; Implications for a Unique Mechanism for Migratory Insertion,” Robbins, LK; Lilly, CP; Smeltz, JL; Boyle, PD; Ison, EA;, Organometallics 2015, 34, 3152-3158 is an interesting read for students studying reaction mechanisms of organometallic complexes.  The reading guide directs students to the sections of the paper that support the question posed in the Discussion Questions document. 

Learning Goals

After reading and discussing this paper, students will be able to explain the mechanisms of migratory insertion reactions of CO and explain the evidence supporting a new mechanism of direct insertion.  In addition students will be better prepared to read and appreciate original research articles without a reading guide.


A student should be able to


1. identify and state the goals and findings of the paper in their own words

2. explain the various methods/techniques used to probe the mechanism, describe what was measured, and explain how the observations support the conclusions presented.

3. apply the CBC method for electron counting of the Re complexes in this paper

4. describe the bonding in metal oxo compounds and explain trans influence

5. understand kinetic parameters such as the reaction rate equation and the reaction order

6. analyze 1H NMR spectra

7. interpret thermodynamic parameters and how they apply to the reaction mechanism

Implementation Notes

The reading guide covers the first part of the paper only.  The DFT studies are not included nor are the synthetic details. We suggest giving the reading guide to the students with the original manuscript and allowing two days or longer for the students to read and digest.  Then, in small groups, or as a class discussion, ask students to answer the questions in the Literature Discussion document.


Time Required
at least 1 class period
Evaluation Methods

Students should be assessed based on participation if there is no written portion to hand in.

Evaluation Results

This is a new learning object created at the 2016 Summer VIPEr Workshop and has not yet been implemented.  Results will be added by the creators after use in a class.  Please feel free to share your results.


Creative Commons License
Attribution, Non-Commercial, Share Alike CC BY-NC-SA


Adam Johnson / Harvey Mudd College

I used this LO in my senior-level discussion-based organometallics course in Fall 2016. Although I did not collect student responses, I gave the students the reading guide to help them prepare for class. This allowed the discussion to be aimed/developed in a non-random way. In future years, I would recommend assigning it as preclass homework, letting students use their notes during class, and then collecting it after the discussion, to give something to grade or evaluate student performance.

the students followed the outline of this reading guide fairly closely during their presentation, and I made sure that their answers were correct (when necessary) as we moved through the material.

Fri, 12/30/2016 - 18:29 Permalink