How to Learn Chemical Reactions

How to Learn Chemical Reactions

One effective strategy used to learn and memorize reactions (especially in organic chemistry) is to understand whole mechanism by which the reactions proceed. It really helps you out when you get confused with some reagent, you can trace back to what reactant should you add if you know the mechanism.

As a general strategy, weekly revision is key. Every Sunday open up a chapter you have completed and make a flowchart of all compounds given in chapter, their reactions and preparation (especially for organic).

For inorganic chemistry, it gets a bit tricky. Here too, you mustn’t cram things! You just have to remember what is oxidized/reduced to what and also how to balance reactions. Yes, some reactions are really weird, but you usually will have to remember only some reagents—and rest is all about balancing!

Many reactions in inorganic chemistry follow the same structure, so it’s essential to really understand what is going on in any reaction you study as this can help you understand other complex reactions. Remember, starting right from the basics (yes, even “Acids donate protons, Bases receive protons” basic!) means that the ‘tower of knowledge’ you eventually develop will have a really strong base (no pun intended!) and will thus stay strong.

On this, we can add more knowledge. Yes, sometimes you will need to cram the temperature and concentration dependence of some reactions. But most of the times, you will find it intuitive—especially if you’ve practiced enough!

Ultimately, the idea is simple: understanding the inherent mechanism of any reaction will give you inner satisfaction and you will have an easier time remembering it.

Add Comment

Leave a Comment!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.