If there is one subject that haunts students, then it has to be Chemistry. A lot of people think that chemistry is tough in general. Well, if not tough, the subject is a bit complicated and challenging to get a grip on. The subject needs to be studied with an attentive mind and excellent memorization skills. If you ask me is chemistry hard, I would say no, it isn’t. Nothing is tough or hard; it’s the efforts you put in to understand the subject makes you feel so.
Is Chemistry Hard?
Several people have earned a Ph.D. in chemical sciences while others still struggle with clearing the school exams. Chemistry might seem challenging to understand as it involves studying and memorizing multiple things at one time. The following factors make this subject difficult to master:
1. Mathematics plays a vital role
People who find mathematics tough will have a hard time studying chemistry courses. The concepts of algebra and geometry come handy while studying chemistry. It is crucial to have clear basics of mathematics to solve chemical problems. The basics of geometry help to understand the structures of the chemical compounds with ease. Calculus also plays a pivotal role in chemistry. In a nutshell, people who are good at mathematics will be able to ace the chemistry exams easily as compared to the ones who find the calculations boring and confusing.
2. Too much information
Chemistry is a vast subject. It has a periodic table that you have to memorize along with the atomic weight. One also needs to know the formulas thoroughly to solve the chemical calculations. Concepts of Molarity, Normality, Molality, etc are the base of solving the problems. One has to remember all the elements, their chemical properties, atomic properties and much more to understand the structures.
3. SI units and Nomenclature
The subject would have been a little easier if it had no specific SI units or its own Nomenclature. The units of measurement are different for this subject and hence the possibility of messing it up increases. The students need to be pro at conversions and using units correctly to get the problems right. Apart from the units, chemistry has its own language and symbols. For example, Sodium is written as Na in chemical equations. The compounds having a full octet are called inert compounds as they do not react with other elements. Hence one needs to memorize these terminologies and symbols to understand the subject.
4. It is all in the book
As we study about the reactions at the atomic level, it isn’t effortless to understand that as we don’t see these reactions with naked eyes. Right from the atomic orbitals to the electrons, everything is just in the chemistry textbook. One can see all this in their routine life and hence the students require more time to understand the subject. The students, if helped with visual presentations for the same, will be beneficial for them.
5. Equations and practicals
A lot of people do not like this subject due to several equations one needs to know about the subject. Learning the basics of solving the equations is also vital as it makes the task easy for the students. Along with learning these equations in the classrooms, students also have to take up practicals to see the reactions. Chemistry labs are fun but can be a torture for someone who lacks the understanding of basic chemistry principles. The titrations are interesting, but some people do not enjoy the chemistry practicals at all.
Lastly, I would say that some students out there believe that chemistry is a tough subject because their seniors, friends, or people around them say so. We easily get influenced by what we see or listen to. If one makes up their mind that the subject is hard, then he/she might end up not liking that subject at all. Chemistry is a fun subject to learn and can also help you in other courses too such as cell biology, microbiology and much more. Although it is challenging to learn a subject like this, reading the literature and trying to pay attention to the lectures will be of great help. I hope this article motivates you to study the subject with more interest.