Skip to main content
4 answers
4
Asked 1660 views

How hard can I expect organic chemistry to be?

#chemistry #college #biology

+25 Karma if successful
From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you

4

4 answers


0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

A.’s Answer

I am a medical student who got an A in organic chemistry as an undergraduate.

Everyone has a different experience with organic chemistry. Many people do consider it to be one of the hardest chemistry classes. However, I think it tends to be easier for people who are good at visualized processes in their head, and for people are good at following processes from point A to point B to point C, etc. The best thing you can do is do a lot of practice questions during the course. Practice makes perfect.
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Michael’s Answer

As the other folks noted, it's reputation varies from person to person. I loved it. I suggest using available online resources for a full week before you start the class so you become familiar with the terminology. There will be a lot to learn about how compounds are named and characterized. I think it's all the new words that give folks the idea it's just a lot of memorization that will get you through. There is a new vocabulary to commit to memory for sure but success will only come through understanding. I suggest you make an agreement with yourself that this class is a priority, create or join a study group, don't shy way from asking a lot of questions or using a professors office hours to get understanding of concepts. I struggled with the concepts of stereochemistry until I got a molecular model set that helped me see in three dimensions what they were talking about. Perhaps that will help you? If you're serious about it and fight hard to master this class, you will.
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Michael’s Answer

Hi Garret,

Short (and obvious) answer - you'll never know until you try it! You may find yourself dealing with it rather well or, you might have to put in extra effort - like Randall mentioned. But don't feel intimidated just yet, as different people have different aptitudes. Like all science topics however, you should expect to put some amount of work into it, in order to feel comfortable with the subject matter. Whether that's by rote, flashcards, study groups or web based learning, it doesn't really matter; just pick the approach(es) that work best for you. If you haven't started your actual classes already, maybe try to look at some on-line classes or demonstrations of organic chemistry in order to give you a better idea of what to expect. That should help you prepare better.

Good luck!
0
0
Updated
Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Randall’s Answer

Hello!

I can understand your anxiety over taking a course which has the reputation for being "hard." However, the reality of how you personally experience it maybe quite different. It depends on how much you study, your study habits, how the course is taught in your institution, the number and nature of other courses you are taking at the same time, the quality of the text book etc.

I remember being somewhat concerned about it as well but when I started it was so much like working puzzles, I would even describe it as “fun.” However, the abundance of material you are expected to learn is likely a spoiler for most folks. This is why you need some disciplined study skills. You may find you need to develop new study skills you have never used before. Some do well with study groups, although you must be especially attentive to discipline when you are working groups as they so commonly turn into gab sessions among friends. Some find flash cards keep the study entertaining but then again learning to study by yourself is always a good study style.

Things are different now with Power Points and multi-color text books but I used to take class notes (the only way to properly attend to a lecture in those days!) on cheap paper I got from a print shop. Then I scribbled down as much the professor said and immediately took it to home or the library to copy it all very carefully in a bound notebook, thumbing through the text book as I would go to embellish the information wherever it helped to do so. I made sure it was very legible and I understood it very well. I still have these bound notebooks after nearly 50 years! But, as a student, I was not done with them yet. I got more of the cheap paper and copied the notebook again. I would do this repeatedly until I got tired of it and the usual plan was to wad it all up and heave it at the wall! It was a great tension reliever! The repetitive review of the material in the manner assured I did get the information down cleanly and clearly. My grades improved dramatically.

I know this is not how students study Power Points, and I am not sure it can be used with Power Points but I am sure you can devise a way to spend the necessary time and utilize your resources to accomplish the same thing. Ultimately you will find you can master the “hard” courses and there is no need for worry!
0