A naphthylamino species containing the methacrylate-based monomer 2-(2-naphthylamino)2-oxo-ethyl methacrylate (NphAOEMA) was synthesized by reacting 2-chloro-N-2-naphthylacetamide (NphA) with sodium methacrylate in acetonitrile. The acetamide was prepared by reacting 1-naphthylamine, dissolved in benzene, with chloroacetylchloride. The free-radical-initiated copolymerization's of NphAOEMA, with methyl methacrylate (MMA) and styrene (ST), were carried out in dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) solution at 65 degreesC using 2,2'-azobisisobutyronitrile (AIBN) as the initiator with various monomer-to-monomer ratios in the feed. The monomer (NphAOEMA) and copolymers were characterized from FT-IR, H-1 and C-13 NMR spectral studies. The copolymer compositions were evaluated by determining the nitrogen contents in the polymers. The reactivity ratios of the monomers were determined by the application of the Fineman-Ross and Kelen-Tudos methods. The molecular weights ((M) over bar (w) and (M) over bar)(n)) and polydispersity indices of the polymers were measured by using gel permation chromagtography. The thermal stabilities of the homo and copolymers were investigated by using thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The solubilities and inherent viscosities of the homo and copolymers were also studied. (C) 2004 Society of Chemical Industry.