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TerrapinAndrew

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I know there are some old threads on this- but I would like some specific recommendations of how I can prepare before the summer session for Orgo I starts on June 18th.

I got an A in General Chemistry I and I should be getting an A in Gen Chem II, providing that I do as well on the final as I have been doing on the recent tests- so chemistry comes fairly easy to me. However, I am the type of person that needs to do LOTS of practice problems to reinforce the learned material, as that is the only way that I can really learn the concepts.

I know Orgo summer session is incredibly tough and that I wont have much time for sleeping, socializing, etc- I already am aware of that----- but I have a month off between the end of spring semester in mid-May and the beginning of Orgo 1 and I want to use my time wisely to prepare for the intense learning schedule that will soon begin.

Does anybody know of any textbooks or "orgo for dummies" type books that can be useful for me to read through and at least become familiar with the concepts? Any websites or study guides etc that have been helpful to any of you, whether during a summer session or regular semester?

I would like to get a recommendation from the professor, so doing well this summer is a very high priority.

Thanks in advance.
 

Rumalum

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Orgo isn't as hard as people make it out to be. All you have to understand is that electron deficient atoms react with electron rich atoms. On a fundamental level, that's all there is to it. Every mechanism can be understood logically, and there isn't as much memorization as people whine about. I don't think I ever studied more than 4 hours for my finals when I took orgo, and I got a 62/70 on the ACS exam

just don't let it get over your head. Unlike some upper level inorganic classes, orgo really does make sense
 

blub1212

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I took orgo I & II over the summer and it really wasn't that bad. There is a book, called Pushing Electrons, that is really good (if your profs don't have something like, I would recommend this book). I probably studied 2-3 hours per day outside of class (but only because they were summer classes). If you are a visual person, make sure to get the model set, if you aren't, then don't worry about it. I bought the set and never used it.
 
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LaughingMan

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Orgo isn't as hard as people make it out to be. All you have to understand is that electron deficient atoms react with electron rich atoms. On a fundamental level, that's all there is to it. Every mechanism can be understood logically, and there isn't as much memorization as people whine about. I don't think I ever studied more than 4 hours for my finals when I took orgo, and I got a 62/70 on the ACS exam

just don't let it get over your head. Unlike some upper level inorganic classes, orgo really does make sense

I agree with this statement.

I found Chem 2 to be more difficult than Orgo 1 and 2. Orgo 1 was quite simple IMO. Orgo 2 was a bit more tricky but only because the author of my textbook appeared to get very lazy near the end and the explanations became poor.
 

TheMightySmiter

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Staying on top of the material is absolutely vital. When I took Orgo I with lab over the summer, I would take notes on lecture and then rewrite those notes every day as soon as I got home. I also did all the practice problems assigned by the professor, and more from the book if I wasn't understanding. I used the book as a reference in case I didn't understand something the professor said in class. You should also find a way of organizing the reactions you learn (you'll understand this more when you start orgo), whether it's a notecard for each one, a list of all reactions that make a particular type of compound, or a "reaction map" that shows how every reaction you learn relates to the others. Lab for me was easy, just time-consuming--the labs themselves are long, although the preparation is nowhere near as bad as it was for gen chem labs.

I took Orgo II in the fall with a professor who I didn't click with, so I didn't even attend lecture and taught the material to myself. Thanks to the great foundation I had in Orgo I, I didn't have a problem with it. A's in both classes. :)

Oh, and I agree that Orgo doesn't have to be the beast people make it out to be. Understanding the material is key to remembering reaction mechanisms. A lot of them are very similar, so just learn to follow the electron movement. The only part that can be difficult is the stereochemistry if you don't have good spatial thinking naturally (AKA being able to flip molecules around in your head and keep track of which bonds go where).
 

TerrapinAndrew

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Thanks so much for all the advice everybody! Those studying tips are definitely helpful and I will be sure to implement them when class starts. All we have is a textbook assigned for the class, so I will be sure to check out the Pushing Electrons book.

These responses make me feel less stressed about taking it over the summer and I feel much more confident that I will be able to handle it. IDK why some people love to complain about how hard orgo is but I guess its like any other science class, stay on top of the material and world hard and you'll be fine- just more-so with summer.
 

DavetheMD

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Be prepared to not do anything your entire summer.

Organic chemistry 1&2 by David Klein
 

blackhole2

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Orgo isn't as hard as people make it out to be. All you have to understand is that electron deficient atoms react with electron rich atoms. On a fundamental level, that's all there is to it. Every mechanism can be understood logically, and there isn't as much memorization as people whine about. I don't think I ever studied more than 4 hours for my finals when I took orgo, and I got a 62/70 on the ACS exam

just don't let it get over your head. Unlike some upper level inorganic classes, orgo really does make sense

This. I just finished taking Organic 1 at my university. I agree "Pushing Electrons" is helpful. Also, "Organic Chemistry 1: Translating the Basic Concepts" by David R. Klein was really good. Try your best not to get behind and do a lot of practice problems and you will do well.
 
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