Every year thousands of pre-med students and other science majors are faced with the arduous task of passing organic chemistry. These students are often overwhelmed by the tons of material they are required to learn and are often left in the dust by the fast pace at which their professors teach. I know what it’s like, after all I went through it too. However, after night after night of all nighters I finally realized what I had been doing wrong. Here are three things I learned the hard way so you won’t have to.

When going for that elusive A in organic chem, I’ve found that the three most useful things you can do are developing good study habits, choosing a great teacher, and buying the right materials. Of course you will not always have much control over who your professor is, but buying the right books and getting ample studying should be easy enough!

Developing good study habits is probably the most important thing you can do. So you should probably do the opposite of what I did back when I took the class. So make sure to attend class every day, don’t bring any distractions with you, sit in front, and take really good notes! Then when you’re done you should review the material and do as many problems in the book as possible. This will help you avoid a lot of stress come exam time.

As for choosing a good professor, it helps to look up the stats on your teacher before hand. Check them out on a site like RateMyProfessors and look up the grade distribution of past classes before you register.

Supplementary texts and guides can always be of use when learning organic chemistry. Sometimes it’s helpful to read the material in multiple ways and it’s especially useful if the book assigned for the class isn’t the world’s greatest.

With this advice you should be armed and ready to succeed in organic chemistry and destroy those exams!

Before you purchase any supplementary texts you need to read my guide on the best organic chemistry guides. This site will provide you with all you need to find the best organic chemistry textbooks.