rpm

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For anyone who already took p-chem, how helpful did you find it to be for mcats, med school, or anything else or if it gave you any other advantages.

Still deciding if i should take it next year or not.
 

stifler

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ive not taken it but i will and at my school the reputation is if you thought orgo II was hard p-chem is impossible.
 

JETER

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rpm said:
For anyone who already took p-chem, how helpful did you find it to be for mcats, med school, or anything else or if it gave you any other advantages.

Still deciding if i should take it next year or not.
I took 12 credits of PChem (Pchem I,II, advanced and lab). I would say that it helped me for the first three weeks of my senior level quantum mechanics course, and for the first month of my statistical thermodynamics class. Also, it was helpful for a chemical kinetics class I took later on. Other than that, no, it helped for nothing. I did really well on the PS section on the MCAT, but I am sure it had nothing to little to do with Pchem. In other words, unless you need it or unless you are going to be taking higher level physics or chemistry class, I would not take it.
 

Sabrinne

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rpm said:
For anyone who already took p-chem, how helpful did you find it to be for mcats, med school, or anything else or if it gave you any other advantages.

Still deciding if i should take it next year or not.
PChem really didn't help much in terms of MCAT, most of it was too advanced to even appear on the test. Also, if you didn't like thermodynamics or kinetics in genchem, don't take this course. Its pretty hard and can impact your GPA big time.
 

AStudent

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I'm in PChem right now, it won't help you on the MCAT unless they redesign the test to include differential equations.....it's interesting, but ALOT of work, and it WON'T help you on the MCAT.
 

AnotherDork

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For me, it really helped to solidify and tie together gen chem concepts. The new stuff you learn in p-chem probably isn't really necessary for a career in medicine, but I think it helped me immensely for the physical sciences part of the MCAT and science in general.
 

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Hi there,
Physical Chemistry while interesting is not useful for the MCAT. It is a great course and a required course for any chemistry major. Outside the pre-med core courses, the most useful courses for the MCAT are Human Physiology (not Anatomy and Physiology), Cell Biology and Molecular Biology/Genetics.
Other courses that might prove useful are Critical Reading and Analysis or Logic/Reasoning in the Philosophy department.

While Physical Chemistry is a great problem solving course, you will not be asked to solve any problems with higher mathematics on the MCAT. You will be asked to take the knowledge of your core pre-med courses and apply it to the problems asked on the exam. The above listed course give you extra practice in applying knowledge and extra insight into things that will be useful for medical school. Otherwise, you need to have a good working knowledge of the core pre-med courses (General Chemistry, General Biology, General Physics and Organic Chemistry).

Good luck!
njbmd :)
 

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stifler said:
ive not taken it but i will and at my school the reputation is if you thought orgo II was hard p-chem is impossible.
I doubt it. Usually, if you like one subject, you'll dislike the other. O-chem is about mindless memorization. P-chem involves concepts and lots of math.
 

Wiggy73

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ITA with njbmd.

Since I AP'ed out of gen chem, I hadn't taken a basic chemistry class since 11th grade when I took the MCAT. P-chem and inorganic were pretty helpful in making me remember the concepts I learned then. But after those classes I knew the "real" reasons for a bunch of stuff that they generally dumb down in gen chem. So on the MCAT I'd be like, "I know the answer you want me to pick, but you realize that's not totally correct, right?" P-chem will mess with your mind. In a good way. Mostly.
 

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deuist said:
I doubt it. Usually, if you like one subject, you'll dislike the other. O-chem is about mindless memorization. P-chem involves concepts and lots of math.
Not necessarily. I loved both courses, and I think that most people can appreciate them both, even if they prefer one over the other. Organic tends to be more interesting to pre-meds because it is the basis for biochem and it has more overt connections to biology. It isn't mathematical, but it has an inherent logic and beauty to it, particularly synthesis. On the other hand, physical chem is fascinating in its own right (especially quantum chemistry), and it is one of those kinds of mind-blowing courses that completely changes the way that you view the world. The more you think about this stuff, the less you understand. :smuggrin:

OP, I agree with everyone else that you should not take physical chem just for MCAT prep. It will probably help you in terms of building your general mathematical and problem-solving skills, but it is too advanced to be useful for the kinds of problems you are going to run into on the MCAT. That being said, I wouldn't not take it just because it won't be on the MCAT, especially if you are interested in the physical sciences and if you have a strong math background. You should be comfortable with differential equations and linear algebra to do well in physical chemistry.
 

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Taking pchem gave me the confidence to know that I can handle a really really really ridiculously challenging course. So, maybe it didn't help me with the MCAT or getting into med school, but you definitely leave pchem thinking "ok med school, i'm ready for you." This is not to say that pchem is some amazing life-changing course, but you definitely have to work at it. It was the hardest I ever worked in college, and if anything, it will reassure you that you can handle higher level thinking and concepts you never knew existed.
 

rpkall

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PChem was a fun way of linking math and chemistry in an upper-level kind of way. Conceptually, the course is no more difficult than gen chem or orgo. The math part, however, will be a pain in the a$$ unless the principles and details of calculus come easy for you.

I didn't do terribly in it, but it didn't do anything great for my GPA either, that's for sure. ;) But I'm proud to say I was in there and I held my own with some of the more brilliant people in the chem programs at the school, and that's personally satisfying.

I don't think it would help for med school material, though. Like, at all. ;)