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Movie Mechanisms for Chemists Curly Arrows Made Easier 23 March 2011 Jason Eames Department of Chemistry.

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Presentation on theme: "Movie Mechanisms for Chemists Curly Arrows Made Easier 23 March 2011 Jason Eames Department of Chemistry."— Presentation transcript:

1 Movie Mechanisms for Chemists Curly Arrows Made Easier 23 March 2011 Jason Eames Department of Chemistry

2 Contents Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 2 Introduction Background: Problems with Reaction Mechanisms Aims Construction of Movie Mechanisms Outcome Trials and Tribulations

3 Introduction Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 3 What is a reaction mechanism? Ability to either navigate or construct a chemical pathway from a starting point, such as starting material A, to an end point (product B) using curly arrow notation and chemical symbols A B Analogy – a £2 coin on a piece of string

4 Introduction Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 4 What is a reaction mechanism? Ability to either navigate or construct a chemical pathway from a starting point, such as starting material A, to an end point (product B) using curly arrow notation and chemical symbols A B Analogy – a £2 coin on a piece of string

5 Introduction Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 5 What is a reaction mechanism? Ability to either navigate or construct a chemical pathway from a starting point, such as starting material A, to an end point (product B) using curly arrow notation and chemical symbols A B Analogy – a £2 coin on a piece of string

6 Reaction Mechanisms - Ability to Navigate Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 6 Why bother making movie mechanisms? Mechanisms contain a great deal of (multiple layered) information Information needs to be deconstructed then reconstructed to aid understanding Need to practise about 40 hours to get to grips with it Primarily involves learning a set of simple rules which then can be used sequentially Similar to the subconscious skills used in learning to drive a car and navigate from point A to point B

7 Background: problems with reaction mechanisms Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 7 Subconscious skill: can be difficult to explain to students Not formally taught: expectation is that students pick up the skills throughout their studies Student feedback and student experience Course evaluation: some students found curly arrows the most enjoyable and others found them the least enjoyable Reality: most students struggled drawing them on their own On-campus & off-campus students Traditional method not suitable for online distant learning (FdSc)

8 Aims Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 8 To create a set of short animated reaction mechanisms with narrative (1-2 mins; <3 MB) Must be simple, suitable for small screens and clear Must be quick, easy and cheap to make Multi-formats (for computers & smart phones) Easy to download or view (e-bridge or YouTube)

9 Construction of Movie Mechanisms Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 9 Microsoft Movie Maker (competent in <3 h) Stop-motion Pictures created using ChemDraw Text-to-speech versus Me, Myself and I Easy to use and wrap up files into a movie (*.wmv) Freeware to convert to other formats (*.mpeg, *.avi etc)

10 Construction of Movie Mechanisms Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 10

11 Construction of Movie Mechanisms Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 11

12 Mechanisms Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 12 Focussed on 12 core reaction mechanisms Narrative focussed on programming/training them to recognise the signals/keywords Example: reduction of a ketoneketone

13 Outcomes Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 13 Student evaluation: requested more movie mechanisms Extend concept to other topics: How to work through a particular problem/calculation ODL students – found it impossible to learn (them) without watching the movie mechanisms Reality: students are more competent at drawing reaction mechanisms in workshops

14 Trials and tribulations Movie Mechanisms for Chemists | 14 Firstly create the silent movie Images Write down the narrative Speak slow enough to give students time to think ahead Record each paragraph separately


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