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CHEM 237 A: Organic Chemistry

Meeting Time: 
TTh 1:30pm - 2:50pm
* *
Samantha Robinson
Samantha Robinson

Syllabus Description:

Zoom Links

Zoom links for all of the synchronous practice sessions (lecture), discussion sections, and office hours will be available throughout the quarter on the Zoom Information Page of the course Canvas site.

Teaching Team & Chemistry Department Contact Information

Dr. Samantha Robinson

Assistant Teaching Professor, Department of Chemistry

email: sjconnel(at)

office hours: Mondays & Wednesdays 3:30-5:00pm

Meeting ID: 992 3481 2864
Passcode: CHEM237

Have an administrative question? Email Dr. R. Please include [CHEM 237] in the subject line.

Want a one-on-one Zoom meeting? Email Dr. R with a few times that work for you.

Have a content question? Try the Canvas discussion board or office hours.

Need an add or drop code? Contact the Chemistry Department's Undergraduate Services.


Teaching Assistants

Sections AA, AE, AG, AI: Madeline Currie

Sections AB, AD: Irika Sinha

Sections AC, AH, AJ, AK: Atch Gopalan

Section AM, AO: Khoi Ha

Required Materials

Our textbook for the quarter is Organic Chemistry by Loudon & Parise (6th Edition).

Textbook Image.jpg 

There are several formats available from the bookstore & other retails (hardcover, loose-leaf, eBook, rental, used, etc.) Any format is fine - pick whichever format will be most convenient and affordable for you.

The textbook authors have not included any of the answers to practice problems in the book itself. Instead, they have compiled complete solutions (and other useful summaries) in the Study Guide and Solutions Manual. It is sold as a separate volume. It is not a required companion to the textbook, but you may find it useful. If the libraries manage to reopen, they do have a copy available on reserve in Odegaard.

Particularly for Chapters 6 & 7, it is useful to have a molecular model kit. As long as you have the capability to generate tetrahedral carbon atoms, any model kit (or gummy bear & toothpick substitute) will do the trick.

Course Components & Grading

Grades will be assigned at the end of the quarter using these course components:

% Description Breakdown
8 Participation (Concept Videos, etc.) (90% of video concept checks for full credit)
8 Discussion Section Worksheets (10 weeks, 1% each, drop 2 weeks)
8 Online Homework (Sapling) (9 chapters, 1% each, drop 1 assign)
48 Midterm Assessments (4 exams, 16% each, drop 1 exam)
28 Final Exam (cumulative, 28%)

Historically, the average student in CHEM 237 has earned a grade between a 2.6-2.9. In general, students obtaining more than 95% of the course points earn a 4.0.

Synchronous Practice Sessions (Lecture)

Synchronous course lecture times (T-Th, 1:30-2:50pm) will be used to discuss the material, allow for Q&A with Dr. R, give an overview of upcoming assignments, and work through practice problems together. These Zoom sessions are not required and attendance will not be monitored. They will be recorded to allow for asynchronous viewing.

Online Homework

Sapling Learning. Practice is an important part of learning. This quarter, we will be using Macmillan's Sapling Learning platform for our homework practice problems. Assignments will be available for approximately 2 weeks prior to their deadlines. Due dates are noted in Canvas and in Sapling. To make sure your account is appropriately linked to the course gradebook, you should register through the link on the Canvas site (registration is $26/quarter when purchased directly through Sapling).

Scoring & Late Assignments. To receive full credit, you must submit the correct answer on the first attempt prior to the deadline shown in Sapling. If your initial submission is incorrect, you may resubmit answers for partial credit. Should unexpected circumstances arise that you are unable to complete your assignment by the due date, you will be able to submit responses in Sapling for an additional week for half of earned credit.

Discussion Sections

Every Wednesday, you will meet with your discussion section synchronously on Zoom. During this time, the teaching assistant will review some of the week's topics, provide time for questions, and guide the group through some practice problems. We encourage you to sign into the Zoom call with your video enabled when possible and on a device where you can access Google G-Suite functionalities to facilitate group work. There are 10 meetings of the discussion sections throughout the quarter, and participation credit will be given each week for your contributions to your breakout groups on worksheet questions. Two discussion sections participation scores will be dropped to allow for absences. No make-up assignments will be offered.

Concept Videos & Concept Checks

While most of the course content will be introduced in the synchronous lecture time, you may find it useful to review individual topics with the short content videos provided for each chapter. Most videos contain at least one concept check quiz that will pop up as you watch the video. Participation credit will be awarded if you have completed at least 90% of the concept check quizzes by the end of the quarter. (The correct answers do not need to be selected, but you must watch the video and select an answer).


The CHEM 237/238/239 organic chemistry series at UW does not include laboratory. Instead, our organic labs are in a separate course series CHEM 241/242 which may be taken with CHEM 238/239 or later.

Midterm Assessments & Final Exam

We will have 4 midterm assessments and a cumulative final exam this quarter. The lowest midterm score will be dropped from your course grade to minimize the impact of illness, absence, or technical difficulty on your grade. The assessments will be posted as PDFs and available for download at 1:30pm on exam days. You will then be able to work through the exam (either filling in your answer on a printed copy, on a tablet/device, or on blank paper numbered according to the exam file). At the end of the exam time, you will create a PDF of your completed assessment and upload it to Gradescope. A practice upload and more specific instructions will be provided prior to the first exam.

Regrade policy. Exams are graded using specific rubrics within the Gradescope platform. If you would like a grader to revisit your exam, you may place that request through Gradescope within 1 week of the midterm scores being published to you.

Access & Accommodations

Your experience in this class is important to us. It is the policy and practice of the University of Washington to create inclusive and accessible learning environments consistent with federal and state law. If you have already established accommodations with Disability Resources for Students (DRS), please communicate your approved accommodations to Dr. Robinson as soon as possible, so we can meet your needs and support your success in this course.

If you have not yet established services through DRS, but have a temporary health condition or permanent disability that requires accommodations, you are welcome to contact DRS at 206-543-8924 or DRS offers resources and coordinates reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities or temporary health conditions (mental health, attention-related, learning, vision, hearing, physical, or health impacts).

Washington state law requires that UW develop a policy for accommodation of student absences or significant hardship due to reasons of faith or conscience, or for organized religious activities. The UW's policy, including more information about how to request an accommodation, is available at Religious Accommodation Policy. Accommodations must be requested within the first two weeks of this course using the Religious Accommodations Request form.


Additional Information & Resources:

Schedule & Reading Topics.pdf 

Ensuring an Inclusive & Equitable Classroom Climate

Suggestions for Course Success

Support for your Health & Well-Being

Academic Ethics & Integrity

Catalog Description: 
First course for students planning to take three quarters of organic chemistry. Structure, nomenclature, reactions, and synthesis of the main types of organic compounds. No organic laboratory accompanies this course. No more than 5 credits can be counted toward graduation from the following course group: CHEM 220, CHEM 223, CHEM 237, CHEM 335. Prerequisite: a minimum grade of 1.7 in either CHEM 153, CHEM 155, or CHEM 162. Offered: AWSpS.
GE Requirements: 
Natural World (NW)
Section Type: 
Last updated: 
October 15, 2020 - 10:00pm