Q&A: Do I have to take inorganic chemistry before organic chemistry?

Do I have to take inorganic chemistry before organic chemistry?
I’m preparing my educational plan with the goal to take the MCAT in January 2011. While I’m familiar with basic concepts from high school chemistry is it essential that I repeat the 2 semester overview of introduction to general chemistry at university or just go straight for the 2 semesters of organic chem? My understanding is that the MCAT covers organic chemistry.
Please only answer if you have taken or are studying for the MCAT.
Thank you for your brutal honesty.

Suggestion by stacyr201
I do apologize for answering this despite not being a MCAT person. However I am a chemistry major in college, so I probably have some helpful stuff for you. Basic High school chemistry doesn’t cut it. General chemistry is not inorganic chemistry it is a brief intro to all major fields of chemistry including organic. If I don’t miss my guess general chemistry is probably a prerequisite for organic chemistry. Since that is usually the case your hands are likely tied in this matter. If not, I strongly recommend it solely because most high schools do not give you anything resembling an adequate intro into organic chemistry and many things you use in organic chemistry are expected prior knowledge from general chemistry. And if you are starting to think about the MCAT it’s probably been a few years since you took chemistry, you don’t remember as much as you think you do, and that will more than likely kill you in the class. And yes You will be expected to know organic chemistry on the MCAT, I helped a friend study a couple years back and I remember organic chemistry stuff.

Suggestion by David B
I work/teach in a college chemistry department and we have students in a pre-med program. In this program the students must take four semesters of chemistry – two courses of general chemistry and two courses of organic. Most also take one or two semesters of biochemistry after the organic – needed for medical school.

High school chemistry – even AP chemistry – is not sufficient to go into organic. Introductory chemistry is a different course and does not count as as a prerequisite for organic. Our college requires two semesters of general chemistry at the college level as a prerequisite before you can register for organic – regardless of high school background. I would strongly recommend taking some biochemistry too – there is probably some on the test.

What do you think? Answer below!

Has anyone taken the ACS General Chemistry Exam before?
Has anyone taken this exam previously in college or anything?

This exam is my final exam. I’m in Chemistry 1 right now so I heard the corresponding ACS Exam, which is the General Chemistry exam, I believe, is quite easy. Is this true? Also, my professor put out a set of questions as a review of the test. A few of them are:

What is the expected empirical formula of gallium oxide?

What is the maximum number of electrons that can occupy a p(x) orbital?

What is the valence electron configuration of the element in Period 4, Group 4A?

A compound consisting of an element having a low ionization energy and a second element having a large electronegativity is likely to have

a. covalent bonds.
b. metallic bonds.
c. coordinate covalent bonds
d. ionic bonds.


*Is this an accurate representation of what the test is supposed to be like?********

Please Answer, this final exam is worth 350 POINTS OF MY GRADE! :)

Suggestion by ?
I’m taking it in 7 days. Frankly, I find it extremely difficult. I’m really thick when it comes to chemistry, so that’s just me.

God be with us all.

Suggestion by Nikolas
To get prepared and test your knowledge of chemistry, you should try this site:


I didn’t want to buy the official ACS study guide (I’m havin’ the exam on this Thursday), so I found that site. Apparently, it states that the practice exams available on the site from Local and National Chem Olympiads should be similar to the ACS exam. Try them out and have fun. Oh, and hope we do well. :)

Suggestion by gold
acs study guide with questions. i am using it right now. hope you see it soon so you can study. good luck!


And don’t take it lightly.do you know VSEPR models, angles, shape(molecular and electron)? Do you know the colligative properties, forces(london, h-bond),orbital hybridization, finding the molecular formula from empirical? just couple of topics. if you answer is yes to all then you probably are in good shape.

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