In This Chapter
Seeing second-order substitution
Considering nucleophiles and leaving groups
Seeing first-order substitution
Discovering first-order and second-order elimination reactions
Distinguishing substitution and elimination reactions
Although you see countless reactions in organic chemistry, you usually don’t sweat the details too much, details like what kinds of solvents are ideal for that reaction, or typical side pathways that lead to undesirable byproducts. The substitution and elimination reactions are exceptions, because these are some of the most widely applicable and versatile reactions that you see in organic chemistry. As such, they deserve a closer look. In this chapter, I present the substitution and elimination reactions, and show you how to recognize these types of reactions. With just these two reaction types, you can synthesize more organic molecules than you can shake a stick at.