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Organic 1 over 6 weeks

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by LikeDaniel, Apr 19, 2017.

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  1. LikeDaniel

    LikeDaniel

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    Jul 1, 2015
    Dayton, OH
    Hello all,

    I am now scheduled for a 6-week version of Organic 1 starting in early May.

    I had an excellent Inorganic teacher, so I feel like I have that nailed down well, but I heard that 16-week Organic 1 can be a killer so I thought I would reach out for advice. (Unfortunately, I am in a situation that requires me to go down this nutso trail, so I'm trying to prepare to make the best of it.)

    Are flashcards and problems from the book the best advice for how to do well? I am watching a YouTube playlist from Leah4Sci on Organic Chemistry during work before class starts and am starting to go through flashcards now that don't really require me to have any additional chemistry education before I know what they're talking about. I've reached out to my professor about getting a heads up on what book we'll be using so I can start reading that too and hopefully get a little bit of an edge from that.

    Does anyone have any additional advice on how I can survive and thrive in this class, especially while working full time? I'm not afraid of hard work, I've been putting in 90+ hours per week between work and school for the past calendar year and I'm prepared to increase that as I assume I'll have to.

    Thanks,
    -LD

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I337 using SDN mobile
     
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  3. MountainClimber94

    MountainClimber94

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    Feb 9, 2017
    Khan Academy got me through Ochem. I can't say that for everyone. It's a tough course but I think it's totally doable in 6 weeks even working full time. You're used to 90 hour weeks. I think you're well-conditioned for this! Flash cards will definitely help you. Drawing out mechanisms over and over wouldn't be a bad idea.


    Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
     
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  4. aformerstudent

    aformerstudent Probationary Status

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    Mar 7, 2017
    You just have to put the hours in. Trust me, if you are taking a six-week class, you won't have any time for "outside" resources or strategies. Stay on top of it and six-weeks will be over before you know it.
     
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  5. backside_attack

    backside_attack MS1

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    May 11, 2016
    Get thee to Amazon and purchase "Organic Chemistry as a Second Language" - the author wrote one of the main texts you might use and it has tons of good practice problems. It's short/small and not too daunting even in your abbreviated schedule.
     
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  6. cellsaver

    cellsaver Probationary Status

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    Dec 26, 2016
    Godspeed. I was pulling for you right until I read the part about you working full time.
    I did Orgo I in my post-bacc days during summer, did well, but quit my job prior to doing post-bacc.

    Orgo is key for medical school. Master Orgo and you will assimilate med school content more readily. However with you working full time, that would compromise most people. Perhaps you are not most people ?

    I used the textbook for our course and the solutions manual, befriended the T.A., visited the professor during office hours, and picked up a friend/study buddy. I inhaled Orgo material and it spanked me. These alone were a full time job
     
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  7. LikeDaniel

    LikeDaniel

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    Jul 1, 2015
    Dayton, OH
    This is tangential, but I'd be interested in why you say this. Is there simply a lot of overlap of material? Or are you moreso referring to the amount of required memorization?

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I337 using SDN mobile
     
  8. aformerstudent

    aformerstudent Probationary Status

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    Mar 7, 2017
    Med school is a lot of memorization. Orgo is a lot of memorization. If you know how to do orgo then you should be able to make the TRANSITION to medicine more easily. Medical school is strangely nothing like undergraduate work.
     
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  9. DT III

    DT III Douglas Dilaudid

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    Mar 4, 2017
    Atlanta
    Just know that doing well in OChem has NOTHING to do with intelligence, but has EVERYTHING to do with grit. That means waking up and working on book problems, taking notes in class, and doing more problems after class every day. Simply, I did hundreds of problems every chapter and made flash cards. That's it, but I put countless hours of work in. This is coming from, at the time, a below average student. After all that, I did well in OChem and it taught me how to study. Good luck!
     
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  10. timephone

    timephone

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    Aug 22, 2015
    Florida
    Does anyone have any other good resources for extra problems for Orgo 1 and 2?

    I'm doing something similar to OP: I'm doing organic chem 1 and 2 at our school's honors college over the summer, 6 weeks for each course. It's a smaller class size, only about 60 students, and the professor is supposed to be really good. However, he's written his own textbook, and he has kind of a funky progression of topics. It's very different from the curriculums of Khan Academy or the Klein books (Orgo as 2nd Language, etc.). What's good though is he's provided the first few chapters for download early so we can get a headstart, and I'm sure I'll need it!
     
  11. DT III

    DT III Douglas Dilaudid

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    Mar 4, 2017
    Atlanta
    Definitely get started now on those chapters and do not let up. Maybe after your work out all the problems in those chapters it will give you an idea to what kind of resources will benefit you. Your professor should also know of some good resources recommended for his course. My professor always told us to just do the book problems and we should be fine, which like I said earlier was an enormous amount of work in and of itself. I obliged and found out he was correct.
     
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  12. timephone

    timephone

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    Aug 22, 2015
    Florida
    Thanks! Yeah I've already started, and I'm hoping I've grasped some of this early material well enough. For example, we're learning about nomenclature early-on, and it seems that he's requiring us to be familiar with both trivial and IUPAC nomenclature from the start. We've learned a handful of functional groups and his exercises are asking us to identify some pretty complex molecules (at least complex for me). However there's only 30-40 exercises for every chapter! It doesn't seem like enough practice. I imagine once we start classes we'll get more material to work on.
     
  13. Kr#36

    Kr#36

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    I would strongly disagree that truly mastering orgo is a lot of memorization. If you actually learn what is happening you barely have to memorize at all. You can look at reactants and what type of environment those reactants are in and predict the products without memorizing that "when this reacts with this the product is usually this." Thats more of a shortcut way to do it.

    You won't really learn much organic chemistry in six weeks, so I'd actually recommend flashcards, tons of practice(emphasize practice more for this class than you do for any others) and memorization to get through it. Then when you have more time, and if you have the interest, you can go back and really learn the principles later.
     
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  14. cellsaver

    cellsaver Probationary Status

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    Dec 26, 2016
    You are not being tangential. You are being practical and perhaps inquisitive. Those are good things. Lose your wonder of the basic medical sciences and you will burn out instantaneously in medicine. It happens.

    Organic Chemistry (OC) is many things but strict memorization is not one of them. A few examples on why Orgo is important in medical school and medicine

    Beta lactam
    Glucose
    Fructose
    Galactose
    Ketones
    Fatty Acids
    Valine
    Tyrosine
    Bicarbonate
    CO2

    and so many more

    All of the above are "organic molecules".

    The beta lactam ring is the core structure of several classes of anti-biotics including Penicillin & Cephalosporins (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th generation). Understanding OC allows you to wrap your head around Pharmacology. All drugs belong to "classes". Drugs within the same class might differ from each other by a functional group or a few extra atoms attached to the core group. The sooner you learn how to mentally visualize molecules and their respective atoms/bonds, the easier you will comprehend much of the basic medical sciences. Biochemistry. Physiology. Genetics. Pathology. Immunology all involve the interaction of organic molecules. It's hard to understand Immunoglobulins if you can not visualize their structure. Their structure are key in what they do in immune system.

    Glucose, Fructose, Galactose are key "sugars" in life. Lacking enzymes necessary in metabolizing them can cause pathologies (e.g. breast milk has lactose, a disaccharide composed galactose and glucose). A new born baby might have symptoms of vomiting and lethargy due to her inability to metabolize galactose. That poses a problem if untreated. Fructose must also be metabolized. Fructose is found in fruits and many sweeteners. Think pancake syrup ("high fructose corn syrup"). There are 2 pathologies that involve fructose. One is benign fructosuria and the other fatal fructose intolerance, both caused by lacking different enzymes. Valine is responsible for Sickle Cell Anemia. It takes the place of glutamic acid on the beta chain of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin! Pure organic chemistry. Branched Chain Amino Acids (Valine, Leucine and Isoleucine) are involved protein synthesis. Without an enzyme that breaks down BCAA, you have a pathology known as "maple syrup disease". CO2 is an organic molecule. We measure CO2 in medicine for many reasons. It is found in our blood in the form bicarbonate and by measuring bicarbonate, we detect many pathologies (e.g. diarrhea, pulmonary disorders, metabolic acidosis, and many more). Tyrosine is a precursor amino acid to Dopamine. Dopamine leads to Epinephrine, Norepinephrine which are vastly important in the CNS, cardiology and vasculature function, to name a few. Organic chemistry does all this for you.

    Embrace your Organic Chemistry courses. Physics I was fun but Physics II has application to medicine as well, particularly the Neurosciences (e.g. currents, resistance, capacitance, etc)

    Do loads of problems in OC. Do all of the assignments your professor gives you. Do more than what she assigns. Buy the solutions manual and come to understand why reactions proceed the way they do. Memorizing won't help you. Understanding them will.

    I saw Organic Chemistry as my friend instead of my enemy. Since I was aware of the influence of organic chemistry in pharmacology, I really wanted to comprehend. I forgot most of the reactions by now, but I did learn this: spatial / geometric arrangements of molecules are key. In medical school most of what we study is very abstract. You can't see amino acids, bacteria, tumor cells, CO2 gas, acids, etc. But you need to develop the skillset to think in the abstract. You will think Orgo is brutal. Your first semester in MD school makes Orgo seem like a vacation. If you can't master Organic Chemistry, you will never survive your first semester in MD school.

    It's called a weed out course for a reason.

    My one regret from Organic Chemistry: not memorizing the structures of Amino Acids. Learn them cold.

    In essence, you are learning a new language. Don't rely on flash cards. Assimilate the information.

    You will see students drop out of your class like flies. Laugh not. Wait till you get to medical school.

    have fun
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2017 at 11:41 AM
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  15. LikeDaniel

    LikeDaniel

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    Jul 1, 2015
    Dayton, OH
    Wow, this response really gets me excited about this class! Thank you, cellsaver. :)

    It sounds like this class will be tough, but over the last couple years I've become a bit of a masochist when it comes to learning things (which often sounds like it might be a requirement for medicine, haha). Even last night my studying kept me up until 1am and just woke up an hour ago to study a bit more before heading off to work. You get used to consistently getting 5ish hours of sleep. ;)

    Having a better grasp of how this information will help me after I matriculate will give me extra motivation to stay up studying "one more hour" during the course and as I pursue it more deeply over my summer break.

    Thanks again!
    -LD

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I337 using SDN mobile
     
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  16. Newtonian21

    Newtonian21

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    May 11, 2016
    Taking Ochem in 6 weeks while working? What do you plan on taking? High middle school chemistry? I do not think it is Ochem. Why the rush?
     

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