The decision to pursue chemistry as a field of study opens the door to a variety of enthralling career opportunities. However, the field is also a challenging one, so you want to make sure you're prepared starting in your first year of college.
You can start to craft an optimal future for yourself before college even begins. Visiting the school should involve more than just checking if a chemistry program exists. Ask to visit the labs; speak with the faculty members about the types of technologies and tools that are available in the labs. You should also find out how much hands-on experience you get to have as this component is crucial to chemistry. Many schools hold science classes in large lecture halls, so you should decide if you are comfortable with that atmosphere.
Most colleges require you to take a certain number of writing-intensive courses, which means you'll have a number of papers. Science classes often come with a lab component, so you could end up with more than the average number of credits in multiple semesters. Taking extra credits with multiple writing-intensive courses can prove difficult. While you'll likely need to take them simultaneously at some point, try to space out these courses as much as possible.
College campuses are generally ready to provide you with resources. Colleges usually have tutoring centers where students who excelled in specific courses are hired to help other students succeed. Also, you will likely have to write lab reports, which require specific formats. Some college writing centers are specifically trained in lab reports, so you should schedule an appointment early on when you receive an assignment.
Majoring in chemistry is certainly about understanding the use of laboratory reagents, but it's also about knowing the definition of the term too. Chemistry will require you to memorize many vocabulary words, and students often find flashcards effective when it comes to this task. As soon as you are assigned a new chapter, start working on the flashcards for it.
You'll likely be moving through your degree in a cohort, so you'll see a number of the same students time and time again. Starting a study group early means that you'll have support for the next four years. Some concepts in chemistry are tough to grasp, so you can help one another fill in each other's gaps.
The world of chemistry is fascinating. Keeping some advice in mind can make your study even more enthralling.
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