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chem 4 or 6A??

lover21lover21 Posts: 31Registered User Junior Member
this might so bad cause I'm a bio major and all but i just took the chem placement test and I failed...miserably. I haven't taken chem since junior year and I was just wondering if i should take chem 4 just to touch up on my chem skills? Or should i just go for 6A and not know as much?
Post edited by lover21 on
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Replies to: chem 4 or 6A??

  • xpenguinxpenguin Posts: 276Registered User Junior Member
    Chem 6a. 10chars
  • gracieegraciee Posts: 154Registered User Junior Member
    @lover21: I heard chem 4 was like sigfigs and how to write up a lab. Pretty simple stuff that you should remember or, if not, will be pretty easy to review
  • caseyklein17caseyklein17 Posts: 44Registered User Junior Member
    I have the same question.

    I took chem is hs but it was a regular, fall-asleep- in your seat easy class - my teacher had to incredibly dumb down the class because most of the students in it were hs burnouts. (my school did not have honors and I couldn't swicth my schedule around for AP)

    I honestly don't remember learning anything and Im wondering if I should just take 6A anyways?
  • droobles91droobles91 Posts: 170Registered User Junior Member
    I was in Chem 4 and what graciee says is somewhat true, you review a lot of stuff and it's relatively slow-paced. however, I was in the same situation and had taken (regular, not AP) chem in my junior year, and had forgotten a lot of things before coming to SD. I tested into 6A but decided to take 4 since I wasn't too confident about jumping right in. and while at times it was easy, the labs can be tricky (and time consuming, but don't let that deter you) and I think that it prepared me well for the 6 series.
    if you don't want to spend an extra quarter doing chem before the 6 series, then take 6A in the fall and make sure you review the "fundamentals" chapter really well on your own time. also be ready for the first half of the 6A course, which when I took it with Dr. Hoeger featured a lot of abstract quantum mechanics and was confusing for me.. the second half is not as bad though.
    it's tough to say what is best for you because as a bio major you've got a lot of lower-division requirements, need space in future quarters and you might want to just get right into 6A. then again, there were a lot of bio majors in chem 4 when I took it. really it's about what you feel comfortable with : )
  • MiniatureDroneMiniatureDrone Posts: 242Registered User Junior Member
    I felt that Chem 6A was definitely simple provided that you set aside the time to practice the problems. I last took chem sophomore year in high school and did not take long to pick it up again by

    1) reading the sections before lecture (syllabus often tells you what subject the prof is going to be lecturing about) This helps you better comprehend whatever is said during lecture.
    2) rereading your lecture notes after lecture + practicing the problems shortly after the lecture.

    But if you feel that you need to take Chem 4, you get the benefit of maybe getting a slightly easier Chem class each quarter since many people in your class either also took Chem 4 or simply waited a quarter before starting the chem series. People tell me that taking classes off track can sometimes work in your favor in that there is less competitive students in those classes (most are on track).
  • fastpitchmomfastpitchmom Posts: 50Registered User Junior Member
    My daughter took 6A after low-level HS preparation. She worked her tail off and spent 37 hours a day (well, you get the picture) on a web program that she says is available to help students catch up. She memorized the first 300 pages of the book for one of the big tests. If you are willing to put in that kind of effort it works. And you should be equal with everyone for 6B.
  • lover21lover21 Posts: 31Registered User Junior Member
    thanks for all the tips! @droobles91 are you a bio major too? &same. I feel like if i jumped into 6A I wouldn't know anything. Definitely considering chem 4 but i know that will just put me off track...:/ decisions. decisions.
  • droobles91droobles91 Posts: 170Registered User Junior Member
    no, I got into SD as undeclared but wanted to try to get into bio through the exceptional admissions process, so I read about the lower-division req's :)
    I'm now a cognitive science major, which funnily enough does not even require general chem.

    good luck with your decision!
  • caseyklein17caseyklein17 Posts: 44Registered User Junior Member
    I'm in Cog Sci too but i'm specializing so I have to take general chem. I'm still debating if I really want to take Chem 4 or just jump to 6A Anyways. Fastpictchmom is slightly making me reconsider:

    "She worked her tail off and spent 37 hours a day (well, you get the picture) on a web program that she says is available to help students catch up. She memorized the first 300 pages of the book for one of the big tests."
    um? i really guess it just depends on the person
  • $KingsElite$$KingsElite$ Posts: 2,323Registered User Senior Member
    ^Well, my high school chem teacher sucked, I started in Chem 6A, never touched the book and got a B. If you put the time into it, I think you should be fine. They do spend a small amount of time in 6A reviewing stuff and it's all in the book if you ever need it.
  • droobles91droobles91 Posts: 170Registered User Junior Member
    @caseyklein17
    cool, what are you specializing in?

    ps... memorizing parts of the book is not necessary. especially if you are using the chem book that was used in the '09-'10 school year for 6A
  • astrinaastrina Posts: 3,029Registered User Senior Member
    chemistry isn't about memorization. if you look at the exams, they're all about applying the skills you've learned to solve a medley of problems. the student who had to commit 300 pages of her textbook to memory should really have gone to a TA or the helproom and found someone to explain the concepts, and life would've been a lot easier.

    in my opinion, chem 4 is for those people who didn't have ANY sort of reliable chemistry in high school. the class is partially designed to teach you how to write a basic lab report, use sig figs (which are hardly used again until 6BL), and not act like a fool in the laboratory. even if you consider your HS prep mediocre at best, you probably retained enough and have enough common sense to excel at the 6 series with the appropriate commitment.

    if you're looking for an easy A, this isn't it. the class doesn't count for any college/professional school requirement and you'll be off-track once you get back into the 6 series.

    -former chem 4/6 series TA
  • lover21lover21 Posts: 31Registered User Junior Member
    thanks for all the help!!! I'm leading more towards Chem 6A now!:D Do you guys have any professor recommendations?
  • MiniatureDroneMiniatureDrone Posts: 242Registered User Junior Member
    johnson, stuart, kubiak
  • leehanjinleehanjin Posts: 22Registered User New Member
    I haven't taken a drop of chem in high school, but I've had experience with sigfigs and writing up labs since I took IBH Physics.
    Can anyone recommend a decent book for me to look over before I take 6A?
    I'd take 4 but I'm still undecided and I'd hate to fall behind on major requirements.
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