ryche22

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hey hey,

I am taking my o-chem 1 right now, and im digging it way more than my bio 2 class, but thats another thread...

We are going out of the McMurry book, and have already had two exams, and I rocked both of them with 100% in each, but they were easy. my professor said this was "baby intro organic chemistry", and from here on out it will be real ochem. For those that have Mcmurry the next test will be chapters 1-8.

All the sudden we are hit with what seems like tons of reactions and mechanisms, and not sure what parts to be studying/memorizing or how.

It seems like common sense to make flash cards, but I was wondering how to do it. What formats did you use on the front/back on the cards? Just the basic reaction, or the complete mechanism, and what other information?

thanks
rick
 

DDS2BE

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I used Kaplan chemistry flash cards. You might find these cards up for sale at SDN.
 

Yalc1

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I made flashcards with reactants on front and products on back. ALso made some with the mechanisms (just helps to write them out). I also did the problems in the back of the book and read the book.
 

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Read book way ahead of everybody else. Made big flashcards based on my class notes (with the details of where electrons go), memorized the reaction as if I was memorizing a complicated math formula. Did the problems(twice!).
 

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I made flashcards with the reactions on the front and the mechanism(s), as well as any special notes (eg, "this is anti-Markovnikov addition" or "this only works if X= F or Cl") in the back. And in my opinion, don't rely entirely on bought flashcards, but make your own - I find that it was the making of them, more than the reviewing, that helped me remember reactions right before a test. For long-term memorization, reviewing is the way to go, but for cramming writing them out worked wonders.
 

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I made flashcards as I went along in class. My goal was not to make one for every single reaction, but rather to codify reaction trends such as halogens reacting with alkenes, epoxides, and so on. I used on 8.5" X 11" sheet of paper for each one and listed the products and reactants on the same side, electron movements, etc. I also tried to make them as simplified and uncluttered as possible so that I could first understand the mechanics behind the reaction and then grasp and master the principle around the reaction type so that I could correctly answer a question dealing with similar, yet unfamiliar, reactants. Needless to say I had a nice stack of paper by the time I was done with ochem, but my little system really worked for me.
 

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Make sure you know the General Rxn and understand the mechanism. Don't just memorize the reaction, really understand why everything is happening. If you understand why stuff works the way it does, then you don't have to spend as much time memorizing every little reaction.
 

eran76

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Perhaps I'm the exception, perhaps not, but I've never found flashcards particularly useful b/c they tend to build artificial barriers between reactions (or ideas) which is not useful during synthesis problems.

What I did was make a reaction map by placing a couple of key reactions and products in the middle of the page (a different map for different classes, i.e. carbonyls, alcohols, double/triple bonds, etc). Then, I would draw each reaction reactants to products, and products to reactants in a sort of hub and spoke design. That way, any reaction you write naturally has the reverse reaction right there for your use (doubles your knowledge with half the effort).

This method is also useful for stringing together different reactions which may require multiple steps to achieve a final product. Trying to remember the reaction conditions for a particular reaction without context was hard, but once it was all integrated I could easily memorize my map b/c it served as its own reference point.
 

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I just flipped through my class notes the night before the exam, and was good enough for a C in the class.






Wait... THAT's why I got a C in organic!! Idiot!

Cramming is def the worst thing you can do for organic. You gotta start from the beginning learning and reviewing this stuff because it pretty much all builds on itself. Whatever you're doing to make 100 on the tests, keep it up! The best way to learn these reactions and mechanisms is to do LOTS of practice problems. Simply looking at notes or flashcards does not work as well as writing them all out over and over. :luck:
 

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blankguy said:
Read book way ahead of everybody else. Made big flashcards based on my class notes (with the details of where electrons go), memorized the reaction as if I was memorizing a complicated math formula. Did the problems(twice!).

I pretty much did the same thing; i wrote the mech's over and over and over until i had them memorized. As far as the reactions, memorize, memorize, memorize. I'd put them all on a "cheat sheet" then rehearse them on a blank sheet of paper and compare the ones I had gotten down cold versus the ones I wasn't clear on.
 

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ryche22 said:
hey hey,

I am taking my o-chem 1 right now, and im digging it way more than my bio 2 class, but thats another thread...

We are going out of the McMurry book, and have already had two exams, and I rocked both of them with 100% in each, but they were easy. my professor said this was "baby intro organic chemistry", and from here on out it will be real ochem. For those that have Mcmurry the next test will be chapters 1-8.

All the sudden we are hit with what seems like tons of reactions and mechanisms, and not sure what parts to be studying/memorizing or how.

It seems like common sense to make flash cards, but I was wondering how to do it. What formats did you use on the front/back on the cards? Just the basic reaction, or the complete mechanism, and what other information?

thanks
rick
\


I have the KAPLAN cards. Brand new and unopened. Sale for $50.00

Got them with the $1100 class.
 

Ind201

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i had the mcmurry book too and i found out that reading through the whole chapter helped me tremendously. it is a really good book that explains it really well, so make sure you read the chapters and you'll understand it.
the kaplan books help too.
 
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ryche22

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wow!

thanks guys for all your input! ive done some google research myself, and am just finding different ways of making them. some say keep it simple by not using R groups, and just having the functional groups on there, some say write the whole thing out.

also i have the book organic chemistry as a second language, and they have templates for flashcards in there. the thing is, it says to catagorize a rxn like SN1, E2...but I dont know what that really means yet, and dont think we will get there until close to the end of the semester...

but for now, i will go off my notes, and the book, and do the best i can. i will probably put the reactants on the front, and the entire mechanism on the back with some notes "markovinov, anti-addition, etc..." on the back. i will have to play with the system as the semster goes on to find out what works for me.

thanks again for your input and suggestions, ill keep you posted on my method, and how it fares for the next test. i hope to keep batting a thousand.

late
rick
 
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ryche22

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Ind201 said:
i had the mcmurry book too and i found out that reading through the whole chapter helped me tremendously. it is a really good book that explains it really well, so make sure you read the chapters and you'll understand it.
the kaplan books help too.

mcmurry is explaining things very clearly. in gen chem i did not understand hybridzation at all, and in 3 pages and 10 minutes with mcmurry's book i was good to go. awesome advice, but its hard to take it from a pats fan...im from philly.

Tom Brady goes to heaven and God is there to meet him at the gate. God welcomes him and takes him to a large beautiful house with Patriots flags hanging from it and He says, "Welcome to heaven." "It's amazing, thank you God." Tom looks next door and sees an even bigger house that is even more beautiful, but it has Eagles flags hanging from every window. Tom says, "God, why does Donovan have a bigger and nicer house than I do?" God replys, " That's not Donovan's house, thats mine."

;) thanks again bud
 
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ryche22

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Update: Rocked that test I was talking about. 115/120! High score was a 116, and low score was a 0.0!

Here are 2 examples of cards I made for the test. Beware: I write like a 3 year old. :laugh:

I made about 20 cards similar to these for the exam. Some had mechanisms that we were required to know, but for the most part we just needed to know reagents, and their stereochemistry and regiochemistry.

Hope this helps some of you out, and for those who did it differently, any tips?

Thanks again for all your help!

Rick
 

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ryche22 said:
Update: Rocked that test I was talking about. 115/120! High score was a 116, and low score was a 0.0!

Here are 2 examples of cards I made for the test. Beware: I write like a 3 year old. :laugh:

I made about 20 cards similar to these for the exam. Some had mechanisms that we were required to know, but for the most part we just needed to know reagents, and their stereochemistry and regiochemistry.

Hope this helps some of you out, and for those who did it differently, any tips?

Thanks again for all your help!

Rick


whatever works for you works for you... but as far as organic chemistry, i can't imagine flash cards being extremely helpful. i mean they can be, but only once you really learn what's going on in each reaction. anyone can regurgitate products... but understanding what is going on (mechanisms) is very important... especially once you start dealing with dozens, and even hundreds of different reactions, some which are quite complicated.