MCAT Mnemonics

MCAT Mnemonics: Most Electronegative Elements

Ken Tao is the MedSchoolCoach expert on MCAT, and will discuss most electronegative elements, and how the acronym FONClBrISCH can help you remember them.

Full Transcription

Hey, welcome back to another MCAT Mnemonic Monday. My name is Ken and I’m an MCAT expert with MedSchoolCoach. Today, we have another general chemistry mnemonic for you and it’s on the most electronegative elements.

As you recall, electronegativity is a measure of an atom’s ability to attract electrons to itself. We often consider electronegativity when we’re looking at covalent bonds where atoms are sharing electrons with each other. If you want to know whether the atoms are sharing electrons equally or unequally then you want to compare their electron negativities. So today’s mnemonic will help you be able to keep track of the most electronegative elements.

So the mnemonic is: FONCLBRISCH. Again, that’s FONCLBRISCH.

This is the most electronegative elements on the periodic table starting with the most electronegative on the top, and decreasing in electronegativity as we work down.

So we have fluorine, oxygen, nitrogen, chlorine, bromine, iodine, sulfur, carbon, and hydrogen.

And if you look at this list you might recall some of these elements as being important for hydrogen bonds. And those three elements are fluorine, oxygen, and nitrogen. And in fact, the reason why they’re capable is hydrogen bonds is because these three are the most electronegative elements.

So again, this is a mnemonic you can use to memorize the most electronegative elements on the periodic table.

Ken Tao

Ken is nationally recognized as a premier MCAT mind. He has worked with thousands of undergraduate students as a graduate teaching assistant and MCAT instructor/tutor for the Princeton Review. At Princeton Review, Ken was the only tutor certified in all subjects, was one of the highest rated MCAT tutors ever and was a teacher trainer. Additionally, Ken worked to found Magoosh's MCAT division. He has written content for dozen's of MCAT books and guides. He is now the Director of MCAT at MedSchoolCoach

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