The two most common kinds of problems that students have in organic chemistry are time-limited-scope exams. In either case, there are two different approaches to solving these problems.
Timed exams generally involve studying the material for a fixed period of time, then doing a short exam at the end of that period. This is good if you are already pretty familiar with the material. However, it is also very difficult to get through the course material in this way, because the exam is much shorter than the study material.
Most students don’t like doing timed exams because they feel like they are being rushed to complete the entire course in a short amount of time. These timed exams are often accompanied by quizzes, but the sample questions tend to be in a relatively limited number of areas, and in most cases, they aren’t timed enough to help with this problem.
The next type of exam is the graded review material. Students learn the material and then go through a series of tests, with one test per section of the material. The material is reviewed over several days, then the final exam is given for the entire course.
Exam questions in this format can be timed, so the student can work through it in as little time as possible. The only downside to this format is that students have to take multiple exams, and they also tend to be very limited in scope. Some materials might require more than one test, and others might only need one or two.
These two forms of exam questions are the only two that I’m going to discuss here. There are other styles of exams that students face, though. Here are some examples:
One exam question involves the “identification of a well-known compound.” The problem involves working out the first element, which is usually carbon, and then trying to figure out what molecule is its last component. Depending on the type of problem, the solution might be a chemical formula, a unique name, or a symbol.
Another example involves the “execution of an analysis on a chosen experiment.” Again, the example might involve looking at some literature, then doing some investigation on the chosen experiment. Typically, the solution to this problem would be some property of a material, or a relationship between one material and another.
Finally, there’s an exam question that asks students to describe the chemistry in the plot of a movie about organic chemistry. It might involve describing an object, then explaining what it’s made of, and how it functions.
Students have to be careful when choosing exam questions in organic chemistry. It is possible that they might have a perfectly good solution to a problem, but it will be quite hard to get past the exam without knowing the answer. There’s no point in finding a solution to a problem that no one has a good reason to solve.
Exam questions in organic chemistry don’t always have to be time-limited. Sometimes, the exam is open ended, and the student simply needs to find a clear solution to a problem. If you have a problem with exam questions in organic chemistry, don’t feel like you’re wasting your time.