For SN2 pathway we use an strong nucleophile (OH-,CN-) so they can easily substitute X(halogen) group from rear side.

While for elimination bimolecular reactions we use a strong conjugated base (RCH2O- or alc.kOH) so that it takes proton from carbon near by to halogen,thus forming an alkene .

While in my text book I had found enter image description here

I was agree with first diagram stating that bulky group will more tend to show elimination rather that substitution but in second diagram they show ethoxide ion giving substitution reaction .

To which I disagree, According to me it be should also show elimination reaction.

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    – Poutnik
    Commented May 10, 2022 at 7:16
  • $\begingroup$ @Poutnik I have issue with the diagram part of it . Text is only for giving context of what I'm talking about. $\endgroup$ Commented May 10, 2022 at 7:41
  • $\begingroup$ I see. It has looked for me like the essential part of the question. $\endgroup$
    – Poutnik
    Commented May 10, 2022 at 7:54
  • $\begingroup$ If would like to know what you take on this problem. $\endgroup$ Commented May 10, 2022 at 14:00
  • $\begingroup$ I would think you get a mixture of both, but I would be more biased towards the elimination than substitution. $\endgroup$
    – Zhe
    Commented May 10, 2022 at 14:04

1 Answer 1


I think both elimination and substitution reaction will occur any of them can dominate cos ethoxide ion is a strong nucleophile and in presence of a alcohol as a solvent. So the reaction which will dominate depends upon solvent which is not mentioned. Moreover it is also a 2°alkyl halide so solvent is much more important factor.


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