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C's in o-chem- please help!

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Mistress S, Aug 19, 2002.

  1. Mistress S

    Mistress S Don't mess with the S 10+ Year Member

    Apr 15, 2000
    Hi, I'm about to start my senior year this fall and will apply to med school next june (will take the MCAT this april). My overall and science GPA's are good (3.82 and 3.6, respectively), and I have good EC's (years of clinical exp., plus research at NIH and good volunteer experiences here and abroad) but I am concerned because I got a C in o-chem II last term and am looking at possibly another C in o-chem III this term. I am taking it as a compressed 3 week summer course; my school is on the quarter system, and I got a B in o-chem I. I plan on working hard in the remaining week and a half of the class to bring my grade up, but as I got a D on the first test this is going to be difficult. I would have gotten a B if my o-chem professor had been willing to grade the portion of the test I completed and ignore the last page and a half that I didn't have time to finish, but unfortunately he is possesed of the notion that one must not only be able to do o-chem well, but also quickly. :rolleyes:

    So that about sucks, but my question is, how much will this affect me when I apply? Obviously it won't help, but should I be concerned enough to re-take o-chem III if I do end up with another C? Should I re-take o-chem II as well, or should I just focus on doing well in my other classes? Opinions on how you would or have handled this situation are welcome, especially from people who have applied with C's and have info to share about how this played out in the admissions process. Thanks in advance!
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  3. Castro Viejo

    Castro Viejo Papa Clot Buster 10+ Year Member

    Jun 3, 1999
    Orgo III? Hmmm... Does your school run on trimesters?

    Regardless I think you should withdraw from Orgo III (if you still can) and retake it during the regular term, and not during a "compressed" summer term. You have to understand that a C is a C, whether you took it during the fall, spring, summer, or one of those weird trimester things. The same law of med school applications doesn't apply to As, of course, as an A during the regular term is invariably better than an A during the summer.

    If you can't withdraw, I'd try to get as good a grade as possible in Orgo III. Having 2 out of 3 required classes with Cs is not going to help your application and probably show that your ability in organic chemistry isn't really up to snuff when compared to the rest of the orgo-taking public.

    Should you happen to end up with a C at the end of this summer term, then pray and then study harder for the MCAT. With any luck you'll score 11+ on the Biological Science section and, hopefully, that will vindicate you to some degree.

    I would strongly advise AGAINST taking any more organic chemistry, advanced organic chemistry, or biochemistry classes. If you got Cs in orgo, it's not very likely you'll fare better in upper level classes. This isn't a knock against you, but just remember that we all have our strengths.

    By the way, what's your major?
  4. Bikini Princess

    Bikini Princess 7+ Year Member

    May 26, 2002
    it's a myth that all schools care about is organic chemistry. it would be nice, however, to get a good grade in the final semester of the class, so if you can pull out now, maybe u should. FYI - your overall & science gpa is quite good, so a few C's shouldn't tarnish it too badly.
  5. Mistress S

    Mistress S Don't mess with the S 10+ Year Member

    Apr 15, 2000
    Thanks for the responses so far. I don't think withdrawing is feasible at this point, so I'll just have to study hard and hope for the best. I just got the second exam back today and I got a high B on it, so if I can keep it up there's hope for me yet! I just wish this class was curved.
    I was planning to take biochem next spring, assuming I do end up with another C would it be better to kick ass in that class (if possible) or re-take o-chem II and/or III?
    To answer your question, Timothy Wu, I am an English major/bio minor, so chemistry's just not my bag, baby. But I suppose we all have to endure things we don't like/aren't good at to get where we want to go in life, unless our daddy happens to be an ex-president.:)
  6. ckent

    ckent Banned Banned

    Jul 31, 2000
    I knew of one student who got into Wash U medical with a C in O'chem. I think that she had straight A's with that C though. A C is not the end of the world. It's not good, but it certainly doesn't take you out of the running. Keep studying hard in your O chem class to raise your grade, I would go ahead and take biochem in the fall if you think that you can do well in it, and know that most med schools will let a good MCAT score compensate for minor blemishes in your GPA.
  7. PrincessCKNY

    PrincessCKNY Crown Royal Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 10, 2002
    I am on the trimester system too at UCI. Just try to make out w/ a B or better in the class. This will prove to the adcoms that you may have slipped in the second quarter, but was able to buckle down and improve your grades. I got a B- in the first quarter of Ochem, but really studied hard and got A's the other two quarters. Most people have said that the second quarter of Ochem is the most difficult, so don't feel badly. Just remember, you want a positive slope when comparing grades chronologically, or within the same subject. Also, it wouldn't hurt to have an orgo professor explain why you may have slipped in some future letter of rec, if you had some extenuating circumstances arise. (ie. you were double majoring)

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