Rank the following in decreasing order of leaving group ability.
a) I > III > IV > II
b) I > III > II > IV
c) III > II > I > IV
d) II > I > III > IV
We’re being asked to rank the given leaving groups in decreasing order of leaving group ability.
Recall that leaving group ability depends on the stability of a leaving group after gaining a negative charge. This means the factors affecting acidity can be applied as well to leaving groups.
Also, recall that the good leaving groups discussed previously are:
2. Sulfonate Esters