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summer o-chem

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by PainKiller69, May 13, 2008.

  1. PainKiller69

    PainKiller69 2+ Year Member

    Mar 28, 2008
    Are the Model Kits worth it?
    Is the O-Chem Lab Survival Manual worth it?
    Are o-chem labs much harder than gen chem/intro bio labs?

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  3. engineeredout

    engineeredout 7+ Year Member

    May 11, 2008
    I used my model kit maybe once in organic, even though it was recommended for us to buy by the professors. Didn't help me all that much.

    As for organic lab, since I'm a chemical engineering major I had to take a version of the organic lab that was really focused on spectroscopy. It was rough, especially since reading NMR was/is difficult for me. They went into some really complicated crap and I hated it.

    If you don't have to take that version of the lab, it shouldn't be too bad. I mean gen chem was pretty easy, lots of titrations and crap. You'll need to know the reactions of what you're doing, but it still just comes down to mixing chemicals together and hoping it doesn't blow up inyour face.
  4. zpiff

    zpiff Spaceman 10+ Year Member

    Dec 6, 2007
    I did not find the model kit useful at all. But I am also very visual so I can easily see the structures in my mind. If you think you'll have to trouble doing that it might be a good investment.
  5. CK0112

    CK0112 2+ Year Member

    Jan 25, 2008
    Some people say the model kits are worth it, my professor actually made them mandatory for my class. If you're more of a visual learner, then seeing the patterns in which molecules form can be useful. You can't become too dependent on them though, especially if you're not going to be able to use them for exams, and for the more complex things the model kits kind of become more annoying than useful. Since my orgo book had nice illustrated mechanisms, I never saw the need for model kits. As for orgo labs, I thought the labs were pretty basic, as long as you understand the mechanism that's being taught in the experiment, and why you need to use certain procedures/reagents/etc. then you should do fine. As the other person said, just make sure you mix everything together the right way.
  6. dArroway

    dArroway Gettin' my hood on 2+ Year Member

    LOL, one professor at my Uni let us have a hexane ring + accessories during our exams.

    It was a LOL-fest, seriously though, I found them completely useless.
  7. CK0112

    CK0112 2+ Year Member

    Jan 25, 2008
    We were allowed to have our entire model kit during the exams, but it's like my TA said, it's not like you're going to have unlimited time to model each molecule, and if you already don't know what's going on in the mechanism without a model kit, then you're probably unprepared for the exam and the model kit's not going to save you.
  8. 194342

    194342 Physician 7+ Year Member

    Mar 17, 2008
    I agree. You should be able to draw the configurations on paper and visualize it in your head. It just takes practice.

    Oh, and using the models during an exam = potential for the worst day of your life. I've seen two people spill the kits mid-exam. Now that sucks.
  9. ImBrianFellows

    ImBrianFellows 7+ Year Member

    Apr 16, 2008
    I bought the O. Chem lab survival guide and didn't use it once during the entire semester. HUGE waste of money for me. The explanations my prof gave were enough to explain how to do each lab. I would say you don't really need it. But I guess it may depend on the teaching style of your professor.

    Like you I was really nervous about this lab before taking it. I honestly didn't find the lab to be bad at all. I actually enjoyed it more than the General Chem labs. I would say the difficulty level is about the same.

    I agree with what has already been mentioned about needing to be able to draw and visualize the structures of the molecules in your head. That being said I do think the modeling kits were pretty useful at the very beginning of O. Chem until I felt I completely understood enantiomers etc.
  10. cpants

    cpants Member 10+ Year Member

    Sep 28, 2007
    I actually thought the models were a really good way to learn the mechanisms, and they were a time-saver on the test (for figuring out structures of the products).

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