MCAT Organic Chemistry > Carboxylic Acids
Carboxylic acids contain a carboxyl group and are characterized by the general formula R-COOH, where R is some monovalent group, such as hydrogen or a carbon chain. The alcohol group on this molecule is a source of an acidic hydrogen proton that can be donated in reaction, thus making carboxylic acids Brønsted-Lowry acids.
The IUPAC prefix for naming carboxylic acid compounds is “-oic acid”.
The following chart provides examples of these compounds with their IUPAC names.
|Structural Formula||IUPAC Name||Common Name|
|HCOOH||Methanoic acid||Formic acid|
|CH3COOH||Ethanoic acid||Acetic acid|
|Ar-COOH||Benzoic acid||Benzenecarboxylic acid|
|HOOC-COO||Oxalic acid||Dicarboxylic acid|