Chemistry Major and the Core

<p>Given the requirements of both the chemistry major and the core, what would be the most advisable way to spread courses throughout my years? Granted, I will be placed into Calc II.</p>

<p>^^yeah, that's what I'd do. A lot of kids get the core out of the way in the first two, though, if ithey don't know what they want to major in.</p>

<p>But how much of the core could I fit into my first two years?</p>


<p>The core is anywhere from 10-15 courses depending on language requirement and double counting courses. If you are doing chem you don't have to worry about the science requirement. To be a chem major you should not try to finish off your core first and then go into chemistry, but rather do it as things go on. Chem is a big major and awesome because you get to do a lot of research, but serious nonetheless and tedious if you try to make it consume your last two years and don't get started early (plus if you start with chem courses and learn you don't like chem anymore, it is still easy to do something else). I will guess you don't have either AP or an SAT II score to pass out of a language. But I'll offer a sample sched to think about. This is based on the Chem Major recommendations - Chemistry</a> | Columbia College. Please know that if for whatever reason you want to skip a class or one doesn't fit in your major, you should talk to the Director of Undergraduate Studies on how to best tailor the curriculum for your needs.</p>

<p>There are 15 Chem courses you need to take, 4 Physics (1 lab, AP/SAT II can help you place out), 4 math (well for you it is 3). To finish sequences quickly you ought to start early on with these.</p>

<p>Sample 1st year.
Lit Hum
Chem Lab (once a week)
Calc II
Language 1</p>

<p>Semester II
Lit Hum
Chem II
Chem Seminar (once a week)
Calc III
Language 2</p>

<p>Sample 2nd Year
Orgo Lab
Calc IV
Language 3</p>

<p>Semester 2
Orgo II
Adv Orgo Lab
Language 4
Any elective - start Physics sequence</p>

<p>How advanced you are in a language (including I would suggest taking language over the summer or trying to test out into a higher section) would be a big advantage. </p>

<p>In the sample I made up you would have finished 8 of the 15 Chem courses (7 remain), have 3 Physics courses remaining and have no math remaining. You would have 2 global core courses, 1 art hum, 1 music hum remaining (and I didn't figure PE into the mix cause it really doesn't count). That means you would 14 courses you have to take and room for at least 6 more electives. A friend of mine chose Russian as his language and ended up continuing with his electives to have a concentration (read: minor) in Russian. Also know that above is the bare minimum course wise you would have to do with things a little bit frontloaded. Most chemistry majors I met are science geniuses and often go far and above the minimums and do graduate chem courses as early as their junior year. Also know that AP Chem or IB would place you out of the first few courses.</p>

<p>If your goal is chem with a thought toward premed, same thing applies, but two of your electives in junior year should be bio courses. Also know that you can test out of music hum with a music placement test, you can take core courses over the summer, and indy research sometimes counts as a chem class. When you know these tricks, it all seems more manageable.</p>

<p>Yeah, here are two more points ad-geek did not touch on:</p>

<p>1) you want balance in your J & S years, a chem major can be pretty demanding and having an art hum or music hum class can be really refreshing and give you balance. I'm in seas so I speak from experience. </p>

<p>2) the variation in chem teachers that teach a specific course is close to nothing, the best art hum classes go to mostly seniors, so if you want to maximize the quality of your teachers do some parts of the core later. Art hum sections each have a few reserved spots for freshmen [and sophomores I believe].</p>

<p>It won't be weird being an upperclassmen in some core classes and physics?</p>

<p>Also, do most students not count gym as one of their courses?</p>

<p>PE is pass/fail and a 1 credit class. You honestly just have to show up to enough classes. If you are like me and are hyper competitive - it is actually a great way to stay in shape by taking the classes and going to them. I took PE classes well after the 2 I had to do (you can take up to 4 for credit) because they were relaxing break-ups to the grind.</p>

<p>It is not being weird being an upperclassman. Physics has premeddies, physics majors, and engineers in there - students take the courses at their own pace and usually when you do it that way no one will really ask what your year is. Core elective courses (art/music hum and global core) are very vast in age range that no one really thinks twice. Though I would say that in my art hum class the majority of us were juniors, in my music hum - i was one of only 4 seniors, but the teacher really liked me because I would bring in the rest of the core classes. I had the most fun in these two classes mostly because they were courses I felt didn't hang in the balance for my major so I could just think and play around with them, and try to figure out a way to bring (pseudo-obnoxiously) Derrida into music - and have my teacher crack-up at my reference. Or my friend who tried to explain the mathematics of Schoenberg's chromatic scale. It is more of a playground for the things you are working on...or at least that is how I viewed the core and why I had a great time with it, students who try not to form relationships between their classes - no matter how disparite they may be - usually get frustrated and don't take some risks; please note that the grading usually is pretty generous in core courses so it really encourages some mental exercise.</p>

Also, do most students not count gym as one of their courses?


<p>Nobody counts gym as one of their classes. If you have 6 classes plus PE, you'll be a complete idiot if you say "I'm taking 7 classes this term."</p>

Art hum sections each have a few reserved spots for freshmen [and sophomores I believe].


<p>This is news to me, can anyone confirm it? The only freshmen I ever knew who got into art/lit hum were on sports teams and got to pick their classes during the summer and they were still at the worst times (9am...)</p>

<p>skyraylor - it is true - they cap the art/music hum sections from filling up in spring registration for upperclassmen, and anyone who drops over the summer - first years get a first shot at those spaces, but they are few and far between.</p>

<p>...but won't I need physics in order to take physical chemistry?</p>

<p>as mentioned a lot depends on where you are with a foreign language. if you are done - you'll be fine and can add in physics earlier. or you could push foreign language to later on and start with physics right away.</p>