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Topic: Chemistry Olympiad  (Read 6009 times)

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Offline XGen

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Chemistry Olympiad
« on: January 09, 2012, 09:35:47 PM »
Currently I am a ninth grader and I am preparing for the chemistry olympiad local exam (portal.acs.org/portal/Navigate?nodeid=528 if you're unfamiliar).

In school, I have not yet taken any chemistry classes (such as honors chemistry, AP chemistry, etc), and I have been studying with the help of books suggested in the "Recommended Books for High School Students" section, specifically General Chemistry by Linus Pauling and some supplements. With these texts, I feel like I have a good understanding of all the concepts I might need for the test that is upcoming in March.

However, I have been taking practice tests and while my scores have been steadily increasing, they seem to have plateaued around 54 and 55 out of 60. While these scores might let me go take the nationals test in normal school districts, my school district is exceptionally competitive (last year the winner of international bio olympiad was from our school, and we had a person go to IPhO, and another make the chemistry summer camp), and so I am a bit worried because only two people are allowed to take the nationals test.

If anyone has any experience with any part of the chemistry olympiad and can offer me any advice, I would be happy to hear it. As of now, I have taken all but two of the local exams, all of the archived AP chemistry exams , and done a good deal of the problems in a book titled 3000 Solved Problems in Chemistry by Schaum's.

Thank you for your time!

Offline UG

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Re: Chemistry Olympiad
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2012, 05:33:20 PM »
It's great to see that you are working so hard :)
In addition to all of your theoretical work, I will add that you consider brushing up on your practical knowledge too (if you are not doing so already). You may not have done a lot of lab work yet (or perhaps you have, I don't know) but I expect they will want you to be familiar with a lot of common lab procedures. For example, a common titration, what goes into the flask and what goes into the burette, what you use to rinse the pipette, what is the end point, what is the equivalence point etc... these things need to be learnt. Also know the common laboratory equipment used for refluxing, distillation, TLC etc... The best place to learn your practical skills is of course in the lab, but if you do not have access, I have seen many good demonstrations on YouTube. A good working knowledge of qualitative analysis of inorganic and organic compounds will also be handy.

Offline XGen

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Re: Chemistry Olympiad
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2012, 06:59:23 PM »
It's great to see that you are working so hard :)
In addition to all of your theoretical work, I will add that you consider brushing up on your practical knowledge too (if you are not doing so already). You may not have done a lot of lab work yet (or perhaps you have, I don't know) but I expect they will want you to be familiar with a lot of common lab procedures. For example, a common titration, what goes into the flask and what goes into the burette, what you use to rinse the pipette, what is the end point, what is the equivalence point etc... these things need to be learnt. Also know the common laboratory equipment used for refluxing, distillation, TLC etc... The best place to learn your practical skills is of course in the lab, but if you do not have access, I have seen many good demonstrations on YouTube. A good working knowledge of qualitative analysis of inorganic and organic compounds will also be handy.

Thank you for your response :D

Yes, on the tests I have taken there is usually some sort of question about lab equipment or procedures that I nearly always don't know because I never was in a lab yet T-T

I will take your advice in going on youtube to look for demonstrations for now, as I will take chem next year and therefore have a chance to be in a lab :D

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