Orgo ranty rant rant

I know there’s already a lot of orgo-bashing on here, but I need to vent.
I took my final orgo final last night. I worked my butt off for this exam, and as hard as I thought he might make the exam, it was even harder. I wanted to cry during the exam, or just scream and give up. There was one question I couldn’t even begin to figure out, and another that I got in the last two minutes, so my solution is scribbled illegibly on the back of the page. Even though I went into this exam with an A, I’m pretty sure I’m not coming out with one. This instructor curves all the grades except the As (in other words, if you’re depending on the curve to help you out, the highest grade you can get is a B+). It will be my first post-bacc non-A.
I think my stress levels may have helped kill me on this one. I was so worried about this exam, I hardly slept the two nights before, and I could barely think through parts of the exam. Frankly, I’m a little concerned about the fact that I haven’t been dealing well with stress lately. I’ve been worse than irritable (downright b----y) and it’s been hard for my boyfriend and my coworkers. At least things should be a little easier this summer, since I’ve pretty much decided to wait on the MCAT.

You are not alone.
I actually enjoyed everything about orgo except the exams. The labs were a blast, the lectures were interesting, and the problem sets were challenging but fun.
Then I’d sit for an exam and my mind would blank. I’d stare at a mostly empty page that I’m supposed to fill with a specific mechanism and I’d start thinking these evil thoughts:
"How am I supposed to know this stuff? Everyone else knows this stuff and I don’t. My brain’s too old to retain new information. I’d make a terrible doctor–I’ll just sit there and draw a blank when I’m supposed to be diagnosing a patient’s condition. I don’t have what it takes. I’m probably getting a C- and this will ruin my chances for graduate school. Why the hell didn’t I review this stuff more frequently?"
Then, after a while, a mechanism pops into my mind and I start to think, OK, I haven’t really forgotten everything I studied.

I am retaking Orgo I this summer. I was 2 points away from a C this spring, but my professor said that he didn’t feel right about curving me up to a C. He suggested I retake it and get a “better grip” on it. chuckle He said that he wouldn’t feel right sending me into Orgo II unprepared.
Part of what freaked me out in that class was it was only 50 minutes long and his tests (outside of being really hard) were created with a 1.5 hour class in mind–EEEKKK!. It was, ironically, the multiple choice that did me in. I did fine on the mechanism/long answer, but MC got me each time.
The prof I have this summer only has long answer questions on his tests. Yeah, a 7 page Orgo test that has lots and lots of blank white space is kinda scary, but so far I have an A in his class.
I have a math degree, so the whole “puke your brain back out on the paper” kind of test isn’t foreign to me. My Diff EQ final was only 4 questions long.

I really do admire anyone who is brave enough to retake this class. I’m in the middle of Orgo II right now. I got an A- in the first part, and so far I’m getting B in the second part. I guess I like it more than Gen Chem. The whole thing makes more sense to me than General Chemistry stuff. But I just can’t imagine going over all the mechanisms again…last night I screw up my 1st test in Orgo II because I didn’t review some basic stuff from Orgo I and I missed all the easy questions…to keep up with everything you really have to review almost everything since the very first class for every single test…
and the whole spectroscopy thing for the lab…I do understand how it works, but the problem set we have to submit next week is just insane…It took few hours today, for four of us in my study group, to figure out only small fraction of the worksheet. Then I finished the whole thing utilising online databases (have no idea how people managed this kind of problems before the INTERNET). this class is just so time-consuming, that I couldn’t handle it twice…

Just when I thought I was enjoying the science/school thing the ORGO TERROR surfaces! Next semester I start Orgo I, and am already dreading the number II part.

Just need to rant here for a minute…
I am taking Orgo I & II over the summer (Just Lecture, Not Lab), which I was warned about. But I took the course many years ago and having a moderately strong science background I thought it would be manageable. Even with the advantage of time, presently being effectively unemployed, having the book, the solutions manual, professor’s old exams, which he freely gives out, and seeing that he reuses those questions (or similar) and takes DIRECTLY problems from the books for the exams, which strong HINTS of which type will be on the exam, I still struggled to get a decent grade in Orgo I (B+ now but there were some grading errors on my last exams and I think he will push it to an A-). The first exam in Orgo II was yesterday and even with all those advantages above, and redoing and reviewing the 10 or 15 book problems that would likely be on the exam (3 of the 4 were in fact), I still felt uncomfortable with my knowledge and ability to do well. The amount of material is overwhelming, and the psychological building up to the exam making it seem a mountain make me nearly frantic. Part of my issue is just really, out and out stupid mistakes and carelessness.
Each semester is 5 weeks and after Orgo I, which I had the 3rd exam on a Thursday and the final that Monday, I just felt beaten up, like a solider in a foxhole who just went thru an artillery barragge. When Orgo II started, it was if I was back in the foxhole with someone yelling "incoming!"
BTW, my last final for the spring term ended on Thursday, May 12th and my summer course started that following Monday… I had a whole weekend off! After Orgo II finishes (or finishes me) on August 1st, I have to fly to California and Las Vegas for family business (the words family and vacation should never be used in the same sentence). Then I get back and start the fall semester a week later BEFORE Labor Day…
Why am I doing this again.
Ok, I have vented, ranted, and raved…back the books and more mechanisms…INCOMING!


BTW, my last final for the spring term ended on Thursday, May 12th and my summer course started that following Monday… I had a whole weekend off! After Orgo II finishes (or finishes me) on August 1st, I have to fly to California and Las Vegas for family business (the words family and vacation should never be used in the same sentence). Then I get back and start the fall semester a week later BEFORE Labor Day…
Why am I doing this again.

It looks like our last few month look exactly the same. And I’ll also have to come back to school, after only 3 weeks of vacations, at the end of August.
I have no idea what your reasons for taking this class in the summer were…but I know mine . I’ll have only physics left (from my prereqs) in the fall and in the spring (but I’m also going to take some other biology classes). Anyway - I decided that I want to have some life for the next year (or at least in the fall - since in the spring I’m going to get ready for April MCAT) it’s better to sacrifice and suck it up during the summer - for 10 weeks, that take this class during the regular semestr for 8 months, together with Physics, which is also demanding and hard, and have no life whatsoever…
I’m telling you. After we’re done with this course, and we’ll look back, we’ll be so glad we took it over the summer.

Yeah, I know. I was trying at being funny with my last line. I am doing it for the same reason…so I won’t be in Orgo I AND trying to take the MCAT at the same time. As with you, I should have a light course load next April when the MCAT comes up…

Thank you everyone for sharing your experiences!
I’ll be starting Organic this fall.

Me too - we can vent together

Don’t laugh, but try to think positively about orgo. I was properly intimidated by all the talk about it ahead of time - it truly has achieved a larger-than-life reputation among generations of pre-meds. But ya know what, I loved it. It was a really fun and interesting class, the labs were just too cool, and it made SENSE to me which is more than I could say for physics, at least for the first several weeks.
It will probably be hard, yes, and require more studying from you than you’ve heretofore thought possible, but at least for some of us it’s not an ogre, so think positive! You might enjoy it!

I enjoy it now that it is making sense. It was just a kick in the teeth the first time through…I finally figured out how to make that little molecule kit work for me and not against me. It hated me the first time through. LOL. 3-D to 2-D

2-D to 3-D...... *shudder*
I took a Maymester class that was called "Problems solving in Chemistry". It was a senior level 3 hour Chem class that covered the highlights of Chemistry needed for the MCAT and the DAT. That was intense....he crammed nearly all 4 semesters of chemistry (2 sem. of general and 2 sem. of orgo) into 2 weeks. Felt like somebody took the fire hose to me, turned it on and told me to take a sip of water. It was cool to have the general chem and the orgo right behind because it really drilled some of the basics home.

Cool!!! I love the class you described, Claycat!!! Where did you take it? And what was the name of this class. I know my study habbits I know that class like this would work perfectly for me!