why does organic chemistry cuts pre-med students off?whats the difficulty, how intense is it with carbons?

6 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Believe me when I tell you that it is a tough course that requires a lot of work and study. You'd be amazed at all of the complex reactions and mechanisms involved with organic compounds. The material is not that conceptually hard if you have a good understanding of chemistry but the course requires a lot of studying and memorization. There is a lot of work that goes in to the lab portion as well. Some people just aren't up for it.

  • ?
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    Speaking as an Organic Chemistry professor who just got done administering his final exam, I think I have some qualifications that lend an answer to this:

    MYTH #1: People who get good grades will naturally do well in Organic Chem.

    Students of this generation have a difficult time thinking for themselves. Before anyone body-slams that, hear me out... It is much easier and more appealing to either a) hope the answer jumps out of the page at you, b) hope someone else has it and will let you copy it, or c) hope you can reach the answer simply thru memorization. All three of these options arise from poor study habits, and reflect a lack of willingness to put forth the effort to THINK! It is in all likelihood that Organic is the first college course that a student arrives at that CAN'T be dealt with strictly by memorizing.

    MYTH #2 Organic chemistry is all memorization.

    False - see Myth #1. It is foolhardy to think Organic is all memory based knowledge. There IS a certain amount in it, yes...nomenclature for example is largely memory in the beginning. (There is no way to know that C4 is butyl other than to remember so) However, you eventually have to learn the IUPAC system and function within it, learn the rules and apply them. That goes beyond just memorizing, but practicing, applying, making mistakes, SEEING where those mistakes were made, and correcting them.

    MYTH #3. Reactions are all memorization. WOOOHOOO! FALSE! See Myth #2! In order to pass my class, you need to know more than "this plus this makes that". I frequently ask that the student show the mechanism involved in a particular reaction...yeah...write it out! This becomes a very VISUAL exercise. Admittedly, this can be tough for some people. Those folks REALLY need to invest in a good set of models, if trying to visualize a 3-D process in 2-D is difficult.

    Some hints:

    1. Admit that you need help in understanding. AND GO GET IT.

    2. Plant your face in front of a chalkboard/wipe board and draw draw draw...write write write...review review review....and make sure you are doing so correctly. Do it with a friend who can check your work and point out your mistakes.

    3. For God's sake, DO THE HOMEWORK (see #2!)

    4. Again, if visualization is an issue, get a model set.

    5. See #1...if O-Chem is kicking your butt, GET HELP. Hire a tutor, find a helpful friend, get a study group together in which EVERYONE participates ... not one that's full of freeloaders who leach off the class geek who does all the work.

    This needs to be way longer. I invite all contacts...e-mail or responses to this ....please....LET'S TALK if you want some help.


  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    If you are good at biology, you are good at science. Any intelligent person can grasp the math required to do pre-med including general chemistry. Since from your question you seem quite intelligent, there are only two options. The first is that you are lacking some basic building blocks required to understand chemistry - for example you never properly learned graphing or log scale. To fix this you may just need to get some one on one tutoring. Your professor ought to be able to guide you to some resources. The tutor will sit down and identify the areas you "aren't getting" and figure out how to fix these deficits. The second possibility is that you just don't *enjoy* it. Having a guaranteed profession is not really a reason to go into medicine, and if you do not enjoy it it is best to stop now. I know several recently graduated doctors that do not enjoy their profession at all, yet continue to have to do it to pay their medical school bills. Don't get into that position!

  • 1 decade ago

    I just finished taking organic chem. It's not that hard! I mean it IS challenging and you really need to study. People make it seem like it's a monster though...It's not. It actually makes sense and it's interesting. I found inorganic chemistry actually harder.

    I think people go into organic already scared that they're gonna fail or hate it and that's the main problem.

    Now, honestly speaking, you gotta pick a good professor! It makes a world of a difference!

    To answer your question about carbons though..organic is all about carbon bonds, nothing else...100% carbons

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  • Jake S
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Ochem pretty much blows. It's a lot of memorization and a lot of similar things that vary by only one or two things. for example C6H12O6 is glucose, fructose, and one other -ose that I can't remember and it's all a matter of positions.

  • 1 decade ago

    orgo is hard, but its foundamental to understand other concepts. I would be scared if the doctor taking care of me didnt understand his orgo thoroughly

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