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CHEM 326 Organic Chemistry II

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    • Profile picture
    Apr 05, 2016
    | Probably wouldn’t recommend.

    This class was tough.

    Course Overview:

    I took this course out of necessity to graduate. Full disclosure: I do not enjoy chemistry, but especially do not enjoy advanced organic chemistry. However, there is a lot of frustration that can (fortunately) be avoided if you simply take ACTION. I waited until the end of the semester to seek help from the professor. I did not fully understand the material, and things just weren't clicking. I was terrified of Professor Lewis, and viewed talking to him as a last hope. I was wrong about him, and about seeking out professors' help in general. Talking to your professor should never be viewed as a final option; this is the first thing you should do if you don't understand the material! Believe it or not, you may actually be really good at the subject, but the way that the professor conveys the information may simply not be your style. This can have you thinking that you don't understand chemistry, for example, when in reality you just don't understand the professor. I'd recommend utilizing office hours, and letting the professor get to know you and your thinking style.

    Course highlights:

    Since I took this course a couple of years ago, I can't say much about the actual chemistry. However, this course taught me a LOT about being proactive. It taught me lessons that I utilized throughout the remainder of undergraduate study, and will continue to use in graduate school. The highlight of the course was the sheer amount of information and the difficulty. Organic chemistry can be like learning a foreign language. I learned from this class, more than any other class, that small bouts of consistent studying is KEY. I would study for HOURS and hours on end, to no avail. My grades were unsatisfactory, and it was incredibly frustrating given the amount of time that I dedicated to the subject. However, after seeking advice from the professor, he basically told me that I was going about this subject (and many others) all wrong. Most brains simply cannot retain or process new information for hours at a time. Sure, it might seem like you're making progress as you're sitting there studying, but when you go to take the test the next week, that information has disappeared into a mysterious abyss. I learned to break up studying into half an hour segments, with legitimate breaks in between. No, that does not mean a "facebook break" or "surf the web" break, but a real mind break: talking to my roommates, going to get some food, going for a run, etc. Amazingly, by studying less (but greatly improving the quality of studying), I learned so much more.

    Hours per week:

    9-11 hours

    Advice for students:

    Refer to what I learned in the course: small study session with quality breaks. Also, talk to the professor! Biology and chemistry professors are incredibly smart, but they sometimes have such a unique way of communicating information, that their knowledge can get lost in translation. Also, be consistent. It's better to study for even just 10 or 20 minutes every single day than to wait to do it all on the weekend.

    • Fall 2014
    • Lewis
    • Yes
    • Background Knowledge Expected Go to Office Hours Many Small Assignments
    • Profile picture
    Feb 06, 2016
    | Would highly recommend.

    Not too easy. Not too difficult.

    Course Overview:

    Andy makes the course interesting and fun.

    Course highlights:

    Andy's jokes were the highlight. This is a class you need to show up for. if you do what is asked for and use your notes you can do well in this class.

    Hours per week:

    9-11 hours

    Advice for students:

    Show up for every class and do exactly what is instructed. Put the hours into studying especially from the class notes

    • Winter 2016
    • T.Andrew(Andy)Taton
    • Yes
    • Background Knowledge Expected Great Intro to the Subject Great Discussions

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