MCAT Basics Podcast

Redox Reactions: Reduction and Oxidation

Redox reactions or reduction and oxidation are reactions in which electrons are simultaneously transferred from one chemical species to another. This episode begins with exploring this concept, including an in-depth look at oxidizing and reducing agents and the factors determining a compound’s effectiveness as an oxidizing agent. 

It also covers the oxidation states of molecules and functional groups, common redox reagents in organic chemistry, and the role of redox in biological systems. The episode also addresses numerical concepts from general chemistry related to redox, such as determining oxidation numbers and understanding electrochemical cells.

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[00:00] Introduction

[01:09] What is the conceptual definition of redox

[06:22] What is an oxidizing agent, and what is a reducing agent?

[08:50] What makes a molecule better than another at being an oxidizing agent or a reducing agent?

[13:58] Which oxidation reduction reagents should you know and what do they

[21:44] Redox in biological systems

[35:01] How to determine the oxidation state

[41:16] The application of oxidation-reduction in electrochemical cells

Sam Smith

Sam completed his Bachelors of Science in Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder. Following his graduation, he worked at the National Institutes of Health Vaccine Research Center studying HIV. Meanwhile, with a microphone in his garage, Sam founded the MCAT Basics podcast. The podcast has grown to become the top rated MCAT podcast on iTunes. In addition to podcasting, Sam enjoys the outdoors, sports, and his friends and family.

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