Home of Organic-ese.com

Where does the name come from?

Thanks for visiting the home of Organic-ese. It is our ongoing mission to make the subject of Organic Chemistry more accessible for everyone. Most people feel the subject is a foreign language on top of a difficult physical science. That is sort of what we meant by “Organic-ese”; but we’re not saying it’s a language like Portuguese or Japanese (or English if it’s not your primary language). The ideas you will apply are, however, undoubtedly foreign.

To learn and understand organic chemistry we’ll show you how to become intimately familiar with a mental process that is not unlike learning a foreign language. It’s something that no one can teach to you because only by the process of doing will you teach it to yourself. Books can help guide you in that direction but there is no hope that you will attain it just by reading about it. The people who seem to “get it” and can solve organic chemistry problems, acquire mental processes that have become habits. There’s nothing genetic or innate about it. Anyone can pick up these skills if they habituate themselves to it quickly. The proper guidance makes this easy. Everyone can eventually learn it. None of this is inaccessible to you.

For you however, the key between success and failure is time. None of it is common sense. The only difference between an ‘A’ and an ‘F’ or ‘W'(ithdrawal) is your pace. We’ve seen it literally thousands of times and we’ll convince you that anyone can learn it.

What most people mean by “foreign language” is that every idea, concept, and thing has a new name you have to learn. And that’s true in this subject but it’s much more systematic than learning a foreign language. Every subject has its own jargon and organic chemistry is no different. Nomenclature and terminology is a necessary way chemists communicate with other chemists. The foreign language aspect of Organic-ese is not about learning how to name molecules. That’s a relatively straightforward skill taught in the first weeks. It’s not all about drawing and how to communicate and represent molecules on paper either.

Organic-ese is about thinking correctly.

The concepts are not difficult. People just out-think themselves, forget to apply fundamentals, or don’t know acclimate to the order things must be done. The main ideas are all in the first chapters of the book (always presented haphazardly) so people don’t realize until much later when it starts to snowball that the ship has sailed. This site is about making organic chemistry accessible and emphasizing the philosophy behind the science.

Don’t confuse the different ways structures are represented, or the terminology, or even the principles as a foreign language. That is not what Organic-ese is not about that. You will learn this way of communicating in your mind with the right set of ideas applied in the proper order and therefore it’s a method not a foreign language. You cannot reach this point by rote memorization. No amount of that will make you successful at organic chemistry. You are not memorizing much more at home than you do in any other course and even less than you did in General Chemistry.

Don’t assume you’ll learn to do organic chemistry by hearing about it in lecture. You can get away with that in other courses but not in this subject. It would be like learning to swim the butterfly or play a Beethoven sonata by listening to someone describe the underwater movements or music theory. Without a method put to use it’s really as difficult as people say it is. That’s what missing from from the start but few explain this or teach this way. With a method, it’s quite manageable and can be just like a game.

How quickly you get clear about the point is the only difference between a good outcome and a poor one. The point, believe it or not, is to learn a set of rules. Not several lists of reagents, functional groups, reaction characteristics etc. Why do some people just seem to “get” it and others struggle? It is not necessarily intelligence. There’s no secret or “gift” to it. They have simply picked up on the right method early and may not realize it.

Without wasting what is already very little time, there’s a better way to learn it. Review sheets, summaries, 5 minute videos and everything else on the internet are a waste of your time. Make on your own review sheets at home, present it yourself, and just do it.

Convert your effort and time getting to productive reasoning, action, and results. That’s what our unusual name is about…we’re growing and here to stay.

Leave a Reply