How to Organize your Orgo Lecture Notebook


With the hope of sharing best-practices for success in introductory orgo lecture, I asked an undergrad in my department (John Ovian) what he recommended. He gave me a sheet that explained how he organized his notebook and how his notebook became a valuable tool for studying. Those notes, plus some design inspiration from the venerable Pee-Chee folder, motivated me to have this graphic built. A million thanks to Aneesa Bey in the UConn Chem front office for translating my scribbles on a sheet into what you see here.


Taking thorough, well-organized notes is key to understanding the course material and effectively and efficiently studying for exams. While the organization of your notebook is an individual process and no one way is perfect for everyone, this sheet provides some techniques that could be useful if adopted properly. The second semester of organic chemistry is highly reaction based (although there are plenty of reactions throughout) so keeping them organized negates the need resort to memorization of these transformations. Try breaking your notebook into these key sections: (1) Table of Contents; (2) Lecture Notes; (3) Mechanisms; (4) Reaction Summaries; (5) Practice Problems.

Text: John Ovian

Design: M.W. Peczuh & Aneesa Bey

Layout & Rendering: Aneesa Bey