If you asked me what part of the Biomedicine course I was excited for- the answer would be, the labs. (To a certain extent)
Today I’m going to be talking more about the general organic chemistry course. More specifically, the labs in the General Organic course (GOC).
Anna, our senior Biomedicine BSc student in her blog has written about 5 interesting labs that a Biomedicine BSc student gets to perform during the 3 year course. After reading her blog I was even more excited to perform the other labs in the upcoming semester having performed only one out of those 5!
Having only had 1 (now 2) courses done in the first semester, I can give you an insight into some of the labs that you would perform in the GOC course.
Now not everyone enjoys organic chemistry a lot. I know, the mechanisms and long complicated chemical names don’t really help make organic chemistry fun but there’s one thing I felt really helped me study those mechanisms and long complicated names! And that was performing the lab itself and also writing the lab report.
There are group and individual labs. The following are the group labs:
3) IR/UV spectroscopy
4) Click Chemistry
and the individual labs are the following:
1) Elimination + Addition
3) Electrophilic aromatic substitution
Personally speaking, performing the labs is quite straight forward but there are always lab supervisors who can guide you if you need help. An important aspect in organic chemistry is learning the theory behind the reactions.
Performing the labs and no matter how tedious it sounds, writing the lab report (which I just finished doing an hour ago) actually truly helps understand the theory.
A picture of a TLC plate viewed under UV light
The lab itself is performed either in groups of two and one lab report is submitted. These labs are fun as you get to do it with a friend. The individual labs are where you get to be independent and I believe it helps you learn how to work efficiently!
Because taking pictures in lab coats is mandatory.
You learn a lot of basic lab techniques such as recrystallization, reflux, TLC analysis (refer to picture 1) and much more. It is mandatory to be safe while performing all the labs!
Aside from that, there are always lots of interesting incidents taking place (fume hood leaking water or accidentally pulling the emergency shower chain during the first ever lab tour) or the joy of finding large leaf like white crystals of the product on your filter funnel make it all worthwhile.
So there it is, having done so many labs in such a short span I felt like dedicating some time writing about them would only make sense. And fear not, your first semester in the Biomedicine BSc course is going to be anything but boring!
Send me an email if there are any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
See you soon!