Organic Chemistry … even the name itself can seem intimidating. Undoubtedly, you have heard horror stories about the difficulty of this class (people failing it, then retaking it, only to fail again). As much as I’d like to ensure you that this class is actually a breeze, that you have nothing to worry about, and other comforts along the same vein … I can’t. In truth, Organic Chemistry is a very difficult class. You can’t passively learn Organic Chemistry, and you can’t cram for it a few days before the exam. But, as long as you are willing to put in the time and effort to stay on top of the material, it can be very manageable. Consistency is very important. You need to consistently add in a little bit of extra work throughout the entire semester. If you’re willing to be a proactive and persistent student, then you are almost guaranteed to pass with no issues.

Our Goal

The goal of this syllabus is to provide you with a strong starting point. From this, you can branch out and utilize all kinds of resources that will ultimately teach you the material. While I hope this is effective as a study tool, make sure you are using other available resources as well;  office hours, review sessions, and even the textbook can be extremely helpful!

I know I just wrote a whole paragraph about why this class is difficult, but please don’t be intimidated from the get-go. You don’t have to be incredibly smart to pass Organic Chemistry. It’s really just a combination of time, effort, and practice. Just remember, stay proactive and this class shouldn’t be too much of a problem. Good luck!


This syllabus is based on the one used at Rutgers University by the Organic Chemistry department, and follows the Organic Chemistry 1 course taught there. While most schools will likely have similar courses, there will undoubtedly be differences in the way the material is presented and what needs to be learned. Make sure to prioritize learning things the way your school presents them and use this as an additional resource.

Be sure to utilize your textbook, office hours, anything your school provides you. They’ll come in handy!

3 Curated Resources

Same textbook as the one above, but this one is listed on Amazon. Once again, this may not be your textbook depending on your school.

This is the textbook that Rutgers currently uses, as of the 2017-18 school year. (Obviously use whichever textbook your school requires). If you are learning independently, it is a good one to pick up.

Chegg Account

free, Platform

A great resource for studying and doing homework. If you are just beginning the course, you may definitely want to consider investing in a Chegg account, to look up solutions to problems if you are stuck.