Solving The “I’m Not Good At Math” Problem

Posted by Katherine H. on 11/8/17 5:41 PM

You’ve heard it before. Or you’ve said it. I’m not good at math.

I hear it from seventh graders struggling with fractions, high school students preparing to take the SAT, friends at a restaurant when splitting a check, and even from parents assuring me that their child’s own difficulties are in fact genetic.

And while I’ve heard it countless times, I’ve never actually met a student who was unable to improve their math skills. 

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Tags: math

How to Study Smart for the New MCAT Natural Science Sections

Posted by David B. on 11/6/17 5:34 PM

A little about me—I took the new MCAT exam in Spring 2016, when it had just recently started being offered in place of the old MCAT exam. I spent a lot of time wondering: how do I prepare for this exam, when so little preparation material is out there specifically for the new exam? At times I felt like I was just spinning my wheels, trying to understand material that was not particularly important for actually performing on the real thing.

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Five Tips to Survive Law School Application Season

Posted by Nancy on 11/3/17 4:07 PM

For many, fall means cozy sweaters, hot apple cider, and watching the leaves turn brilliant hues. Unfortunately, for some fall can also signify the beginning of application season, which means anxiety and re-writing essays are more likely than pumpkin spice lattes. Here are some tips on how to survive the application cycle, specifically geared towards law school applicants:

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Tags: law school admissions

The 5 Most Important Strategies when Planning Your MCAT Study Schedule

Posted by Shaq on 11/1/17 6:50 PM

Choosing when to take the MCAT was a decision I wrestled with for months and months, but strangely enough I don’t remember exactly when I chose my test date. What I do remember clearly though is sitting down at the mahogany wood desk in my room at home over Thanksgiving break, opening up my laptop, and having no idea where to begin my planning for my May test date. I read article after article, including this one by a fellow Cambridge Coaching tutor, and ultimately constructed a plan as well as I could have with the information I had. With some insight and luck, the plan worked out pretty well for me, but there were some issues I could have anticipated better. Having emerged from the other side, here are 5 principles I’d emphasize to anyone beginning to plan their study schedule:

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Orgo 2 Strategies: “Taking Home” Carboxylic Acid Derivatives

Posted by Andrew S. on 10/30/17 6:22 PM

I’ve already covered how to easily manage carboxylic acid derivative formation and manipulation using the Reactivity Hill.

Say we’re tired of whatever derivative we just created and want to bring the derivative back to its parent acid (the particular acid the derivative came from). There are two ways to “take home” any acid-derivative. We can account for these “take home” conditions in the Reactivity Hill scheme we’ve already seen.

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Tags: chemistry

Organic Chemistry: This Subject Gives You Alkynes of Trouble!

Posted by Daljit on 10/27/17 4:39 PM

Although some people genuinely enjoy it, organic chemistry is stigmatized as the bane of every science major's curriculum. Before you actually take one or two courses in this subject, the horror stories that you've heard from those who have already taken these courses fill you with anxiety and leave you fearing the unknown. I'm not going to sugar coat it: organic chemistry is difficult but not impossible. As long as you devote enough time to study for the exams and figure out an effective study system (I used flashcards), you will be fine when it's all said and done. If you have ever taken an organic chemistry class or if you are currently taking one now, you know that there are feelings and experiences that only a past, or current, organic chemistry student understands.

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Tags: chemistry

How to Draft a College Personal Statement in 4 Easy Steps

Posted by Martha C. on 10/25/17 5:00 PM

There is no use beating around the bush: drafting your personal statement is one of the most challenging components of the college application.  Even the most confident writers struggle to distill their identity within the bounds of a word count. The personal statement requires serious introspection about your life and long term goals, and thus can be extremely hard to write.  The key to writing a good personal statement is to structure your brainstorming time.  

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Golden Rules to Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR) Analysis: Part 2

Posted by Madalee on 10/23/17 6:38 PM

If you haven't read Part 1 of this blog, please do so now.

How to Solve an 1H NMR Spectrum

1. Calculate the degrees of unsaturation (DOU).

Calculate the DOU from the molecular formula, or the number of double bonds or rings. In order to solve an NMR spectrum, a molecular formula must be provided. If not, only generalities can be determined about the structure.

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Golden Rules to Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR) Analysis: Part 1

Posted by Madalee on 10/21/17 11:37 AM

Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, or NMR, is a fundamental analytical technique used by chemists to determine the structure of organic compounds. Unlike other analytical techniques, such as infrared spectroscopy or mass spectroscopy, NMR allows for the complete interpretation of molecular structure and can be quantitative.

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Five Reasons You Shouldn’t Stress About LSAT Logic Games (Especially After Your First Diagnostic)

Posted by Alexander on 10/18/17 6:28 PM

I still remember the exact order of the sections in my first LSAT diagnostic. First was critical reading; great, something that was familiar from the SAT. Then came two logical reasoning sections; hard, but at least I had a general idea of what to do.

Little did I know that the fourth section was logic games. After a crushing thirty-five minutes with the section, I came away shaken and defeated. I had no idea how to approach the problems systematically, had struggled with timing (to the point where I guessed on most of the problems), and was furious that law schools would take my ability to order people on buses or group clothing items into different sets as an indicator of my quality as an applicant.

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