got C in Orgo I AND Micro this semester

…which to me seems like a Death Knell. So, I am taking Orgo I again this summer. I need to hear from those who have succeeded before me. I am 41, and dropped a career in 2006, and am just about to take the MCATs this December. any feedback, critical or otherwise, appreciated.

You can do this - find out how you study best and how many classes you can take at a time at the beginning of your journey. I had three terms of Orgo and my grades were B, C, and A. Each term was really different but I made it through and watched about one third of the class drop out over the course of the year.

Hang in there.

thanks. that makes this whole summer a not-so-bad enterprise. I am glad i am re-taking the course, just so i know the material better.

again, thanks for the encouragement.

Learn the mechanisms - they why more so than the how. Try to understand why the reaction is occurring rather than focussing on the rxn reagents and products themselves.

I just got done with I and am enrolled for II and the lab this summer so its going to be crazy!

Do lots and lots of problems. When you come across a solved example try to figure out what the products will be before you look at the solution. I found this to be very helpful.

As my instructor told me when I bombed one of the midterms - “learn the chemistry.” In other words think mechanistically and why the reaction is occurring. I’ve realized that most, if not all, of Organic Chemistry and indeed, chemistry itself, can be boiled down to thinking about electron clouds - where the electron deficiency is and where that deficiency could be made up from, i.e., an electron donor or nucleophile close by.

Think about a nucleus surrounded by a malleable sac filled with viscous fluid - that’s your electron cloud. It can swish-swash from side to side and in the process can change the electrodynamics of a molecule or atom to take part in a reaction and yield a different compund.

Animate your ideas, a system of reagents is inherently lazy and a slob - it always wants to get to a state that is lowest in energy and will rearrange molecules, rings, bonds to get there.

Hope that helps…somewhat! Once again, there is no substitute for taking pen to paper and doing tons of problems in this subject. Actually strike that, for any subject only very few people can grasp the subject comprehensively by reading or listening.

That’s actually one of the problems I have with biology because textbooks don’t give that many practice problems to solve per se.

thanks to “Dazed” up above. the analogy about the electron clouds is very helpful. I was helping a fellow student out today, and the more I discussed nucleophilicity, it became more obvious to her how the mechanisms work…more importantly, I was further down the road than the last time I had studied.