Module 12

Main Progression - Coordination Chemistry, Oxidation - Reduction, Oxidation - Reduction in Organic Chemistry, Electrochemistry, Bioenergetics and Cellular Respiration, Photosynthesis optional for MCAT, and Integration of Metabolism

Review & Preview - Continue preparing for the next practice test in Module 14. Aim for mastery of Organic Chemistry at the level of the basics during this module.

Knowledge Mapping - Applying the intuitive conceptual understanding of chemical change, based on common sense integration of fundamental principles in physics, chemistry, and organic chemistry, to the processes of respiration and oxidative metabolism.

Verbal Reasoning and Essay - Continuing the regimin of reading program, exercise, and writing assignment.

Main Progression

Videos

Assignments


Take about fifteen minutes to orient yourself to the terminology from Coordination Chemistry using the MCAT Primer, your basic terms Crossword Puzzle, Solution and online drill at the Question Server
A basic understanding of Coordination Chemistry is essential, but spending a great deal of time on advanced material in this topic may not be the best idea for MCAT study. However, take some time to look through the the Coordination Chemistry external resources in the Learning Center. The Chem1 Virtual Textbook is especially excellent for a general introduction to this topic. An orientation to the basic ideas will help you better understand important material in other areas, metalloenzymes, for example.

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Goals


Be prepared to define a coordination complex and describe its components.
Understand what distinguishes a coordinate covalent bond.
Be able to distinguish monodentate and polydentate ligands.
Be familiar with chelating agents and the process of chelation.
Have a basic sense of how the "inner-outer" hybrid model involving d orbital hybridization explaining coordination complex structure has been superseded by crystal field and ligand field theory.
Be able to account for d-orbital splitting in ligand field theory and explain why coordination complexes are often intensely colored.
Comprehend the importance of coordination chemistry to many biochemical processes.

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Videos

Assignments


Orient yourself by browsing the images and studying the Oxidation & Reduction vocabulary (at least through Level 3) in the MCAT Primer. Use the question mask for a final drill and then test yourself on the basic terms with the Crossword Puzzle. Here is the Solution. You can also work on the vocabulary online at the Question Server.
Read pp. 109-111 in Examkrackers Chemistry. Do the problems on p. 112.
Ensure mastery with the WikiPremed Redox & Electrochemistry Problem Set. (You might save this assignment for the next chapter, Electrochemistry) Here is the Solution.
Finish your Main Progression work on Oxidation & Reduction with a review tour of the Oxidation & Reduction external resources in the Learning Center.

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Goals


Understand how to distinguish oxidation-reduction reactions from metathesis reactions, and be able to identify the oxidizing agents and reducing agents within redox reactions.
Be well practiced in assigning oxidation numbers.
Gain an intuitive ability to predict the redox behavior of various substances from their chemical structure, whether they will tend to act as oxidizing or reducing agents.
Comprehend the application of chemical bonding and chemical thermodynamic principles to judging the spontaneity of redox reactions.
Be able to narrate the events that occur when a copper wire is suspended in a solution containing silver ions.
Understand what occurs within the various processes known as corrosion.
Have a basic familiarity with the methods for balancing redox reactions, the oxidation number method and the half-reaction method.
Be prepared to identify common oxidizing and reducing agents.

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Assignments


Browse the images and study the Oxidation & Reduction vocabulary (at least through Level 3) in the MCAT Primer. Use the question mask for a final drill and then test yourself on the basic terms with the Crossword Puzzle. Here is the Solution. You can also work on the vocabulary online at the Question Server.
Read the relevant subsections on p. 36, 48-49 in Examkrackers Organic Chemistry.
Study the set of reactions chosen from the WikiPremed Organic Mechanisms which are highlighted on the Oxidation-Reduction in Organic Chemistry Chapter Page.
Take a review tour of the Oxidation-Reduction in Organic Chemistry resources in the Learning Center.

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Goals


Be able to assign the oxidation number of carbon with fluent ease within the various organic functional groups.
Understand the sequence of alkanes, alcohols, aldehydes & ketones, and carboxylic acids as a series of oxidation states.
Recall the oxidizing and reducing agents employed in the organic chemistry laboratory and how they are used.
Be aware of special case redox reactions such as benzylic oxidation and other cases where oxidation may result in cleavage or decarboxylization.
Have familiarity with a few complex oxidation-reduction mechanisms such as the Wolff-Kishner reaction or Nitrile Reduction.

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Videos

Assignments


Browse the images and study the Electrochemistry vocabulary (at least through Level 3) in the MCAT Primer. Use the question mask for a final drill and then test yourself on the basic terms with the Crossword Puzzle. Here is the Solution. You can also work on the vocabulary online at the Question Server.
Read pp. 113-118 in Examkrackers Chemistry. Perform the problems on p 119. Read pp 120-121 and do the problems on pp 122-123. .
If you have not done so yet, perform the WikiPremed Redox & Electrochemistry Problem Set. Here is the Solution.
Finish your Main Progression work on Electrochemistry with a review tour of the Electrochemistry external resources in the Learning Center.

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Goals


Be able to articulate the importance of the electroneutrality principle in governing electrochemical processes.
Understand what is meant by an electrode process.
Be able to name the components of a typical galvanic cell and describe its manner of operation.
Be able to describe the difference between a galvanic and electrolytic cell.
Be prepared to relate the current in an electrochemical cell to stoichiometrical quantities.
Comprehend the purpose of the salt bridge in an electrochemical cell.
Know what the difference is between the anode and the cathode and understand what their respective potentials will be in a galvanic or electrolytic cell.
Be able to conceptualize cell potentials and understand the electromotive or activity series of the metals.
Comprehend the meaning of a standard reduction potential.
Understand the relationship of cell potential and free energy change.
Understand the Nernst equation and how to work with it.
Be able to describe how the oxidation or reduction of water can be a competing process when an aqueous solution is subjected to electrolysis.

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Assignments


Orient yourself to the basic terminology and conceptual space of Bioenergetics and Cellular Respiration before proceeding with the rest of your assignments. Browse the terminology and images within the Bioenergetics and Respiration Chapter of the MCAT Primer. Try to get the point where you can narrate the major biochemical pathways. Complete the basic terms Crossword Puzzle (Solution) and perform an online drill at the Question Server.
Read pp. 17-22 in Examkrackers Biology. Perform the questions on p. 23.
Take a review tour of the Bioenergetics resources in the Learning Center. Try to get one step past Biology 101 with a familiarity approaching Biochemistry level understanding.

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Goals


Be able to narrate an overview of respiration and oxidative metabolism from glycolysis, mobilization of pyruvate, citric acid cycle, to the electron transport system and be prepared to designate their locations in the eukaryotic cell.
Understand the bioenergetic roles of glucose, ATP, NADH and other prominent substances in respiration and metabolism.
Be able to describe the basic steps of glycolysis, account for the ATP and NADH created, and be able to describe the role of phosphofructokinase in controlling the rate of glycolysis.
Understand the purpose of fermentation and describe the specific fates of pyruvic acid in yeast and active muscles respectively.
Comprehend the process of pyruvate decarboxylization.
Be able to describe the basic steps of the citric acid cycle, account for the NADH, FADH2, and GTP created.
Understand how the structure of a mitochondrion supports its role in oxidative metabolism.
Be prepared to describe in general terms the roles of the protein complexes involved in oxidative phosphorylation utilizing the electron transport chain in the mitochondrion.

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Photosynthesis

Photosynthesis is an optional topic for the MCAT, although it can be useful to study for your general intuition about biochemistry. For MCAT Preparation, Photosynthesis can be seen as a relief zone for pure biochemistry reading comprehension and because photosynthesis is a field where a lot of more fundamental sciences comes into play, so it gives you an area to think about things like pigments, or internal energy change, or coordination complexes, or bioenergetics without any pressure to memorize everything.

Assignments


Basically, Photosynthesis is just for reading comprehension for the MCAT. To give yourself a head-start, browse the terminology and images within the Photosynthesis Chapter of the MCAT Primer. If you feel like it, complete the basic terms Crossword Puzzle (Solution) and perform an online drill at the Question Server.
Read through selected materials in the Learning Center on the Photosynthesis starting HERE. Practice applying a framework of fundamental science concepts to what you are reading. This is an essential skill for the MCAT.

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Goals


Although these learning goals are optional for the MCAT, you should be able to describe the main processes involved in the light and dark reactions in photosynthesis.
Understand the shifts in redox potential through the intermediate steps as electrons pass from P680 to NADP+
Be able to comprehend a narration of the Calvin cycle.

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Integration of Metabolism

Detailed factual knowledge of biochemical pathways beyond glycolysis and the citric acid cycle is not a prerequisite for the MCAT. While it is more test relevant than Photosynthesis, don't take a month out of your study time to memorize everything unless you feel like it (wait until Med School!).

Assignments


Browse the terminology and images within the Integration of Metabolism Chapter of the MCAT Primer. Definitely do complete the basic terms Crossword Puzzle (Solution) and perform an online drill at the Question Server.
Read through selected materials in the Learning Center on the Integration of Metabolism starting HERE. Practice applying a framework of fundamental science concepts to what you are reading. Having a good feel for this material is a definite benefit for the MCAT, but there will not be detail oriented questions.

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Goals


Have a good overview of the basic nomenclature and principles of regulation of metabolic pathways.
Be able to describe in general terms the integration of the major bioenergetic pathways glycolysis and the citric acid cycle with other major pathways such as gluconeogenesis, the pentose phosphate pathway, or porphyrin synthesis.
Be able to talk with at least some familiarity about protein, carbohydrate, nucleic acid, and lipid biosynthesis.

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Review & Preview

Assignments


In module 12 we continue preparing for the next practice test in module 14 with in depth comprehensive study cycles. We are imagining that you have put off studying for the MCAT and you need to cram. Even though you have more time, if you can convince yourself that the test is imminent, you can give your mind the impetus to hold itself responsible for the entire knowledge base. In module 14, we'll have another practice test to see how things are coming. As with last week, take at least a third of your study time for preparing for this exam. This cycle, a major goal is that you really want to break through with your ExamKrackers study package in Organic Chemistry. Work for that feeling you have when you are well studied and you know how every page looks. You need to get the baseline MCAT knowledge mastered early enough before the exam. Study every conceptual chapter in Organic Chemistry this module and complete every 30 minute in-class exam in the book as you go. As with last module, this is a heck of lot of work, but make yourself suffer now and you won't have to later.

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Goals


Hold yourself responsible for solid mastery of the fundamentals in Organic Chemistry.
Be able to describe the physical properties, ionizability, and reactivity of each of the functional groups.
Reflect on which areas of organic chemistry seem foggiest, making sure you could draw out the activated complexes of the dozen or so most important reactions.

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Knowledge Mapping

Assignments


Read the Coaching Discussions associated with the Main Sequence topics of the Second Law of Thermodynamics, Chemical Thermodynamics and the Equilibrium State, the States of Matter, the Physical Properties of Organic Compounds, and Chemical Kinetics. These discussions are somewhat difficult. Don't be afraid to read some of them several times. Start HERE and proceed by clicking 'Next Discussion'.

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Goals


Be able to narrate the Carnot Cycle in terms of the concepts of Heat & Temperature, Ideal Gas & Kinetic Theory, The First Law of Thermodynamics, and the Second Law of Thermodynamics.
Pull together concepts of Work & Energy, the Electric Force, Heat & Temperature, Thermochemistry and the Second Law of Thermodynamics to develop a concrete, intuitive sense of the Gibbs free energy.
Apply the concepts of Thermochemistry and Chemical Thermodynamics to understand equilibrium in important examples such as phase change, dissolving an electrolyte in water, autoprotolysis of an acid, and oxidation-reduction.
Be prepared to distinguish reasoning based on the concepts of Chemical Thermodynamics from propositions based on Chemical Kinetics.

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Verbal Reasoning

Assignments


Revisit the WikiPremed treatment of Verbal Reasoning on the MCAT.
Perform Passages 21-30 in Examkrackers MCAT101 Passages in MCAT Verbal Reasoning.
Go through the test you completed. Label every question by type in the margin: Main Idea, Author's Tone, Thematic Extension, Specific Inference, or Facts & Information. Which types seem to be giving the most problems? In the ones you missed, how do your chosen answers differ from the correct answers?

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Goals


Remember the five main types of Verbal Reasoning questions.

Main Idea

Author's Tone

Thematic Extension

Specific Inference

Facts & Information

Verbal Reasoning Tip of the Week
Watch out for wrong answers designed to entice you to answer what your own opinion is instead of the author's. The question prompt will not say, 'according to you'. It will say, 'according to the author'.

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Essay

Assignments


Read the WikiPremed guide to Writing the MCAT Essay.
Arrange an undisturbed half hour to write an essay. Click Here for your essay topic for module seveb. Don't advance to page 2 until you are ready to begin writing.

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Goals


Focus on how to lean a bit towards either the first or the second essay task to give your essay dynamism and unity.

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MECHANICS & WAVES
MCAT course 
syllabus module 1
Kinematics
Newton's Laws
Work, Energy, & Power
Momentum & Impulse
MCAT course syllabus module 2
Rotation  
Harmonic Motion
Elastic Properties of Solids
Fluid Mechanics
Waves
FUNDAMENTAL FORCES
MCAT course syllabus module 3
Gravitation
Electricity
THE STRUCTURE OF MATTER
MCAT course 
syllabus module 4
Atomic Theory
Periodic Properties
The Chemical Bond
Intermolecular Forces
MCAT course syllabus module 5
Functional Groups
Stereochemistry
THERMODYNAMICS & KINETICS
MCAT course syllabus module 6
Temperature & Heat Flow
Ideal Gas & Kinetic Theory
1st Law of Thermodynamics
Stoichiometry
Thermochemistry
MCAT course syllabus module 7
2nd Law & Heat Engines
Chemical Thermodynamics
The States of Matter
Orgo Physical Properties
Chemical Kinetics
AQUEOUS SYSTEMS
MCAT course syllabus module 8
Water
Solutions
Acids & Bases
Organic Acids & Bases
ORGANIC REACTION CHEMISTRY
MCAT course syllabus module 9
Nucleophiles & Electrophiles
Rearrangements
Radical Intermediates
Conjugation & Aromaticity
Alkanes
Alkenes  optional
Alkynes  optional
Alkyl Halides
Allylic Conjugation
Aromatic Compounds  optional
Alcohols & Ethers
Aldehydes & Ketones
Carboxylic Acids
Amines
Phosphorus Compounds
Sulfur Compounds
MCAT course 
syllabus module 10Overall Review
BIOMOLECULES
MCAT course syllabus module 11
Proteins
Carbohydrates
Nucleic Acids
Lipids
THE CELL
Biological Membranes
The Prokaryotic Cell
The Eukaryotic Cell
BIOENERGETICS & BIOSYNTHESIS
MCAT course syllabus module 12
Coordination Chemistry
Oxidation/Reduction
Redox in Organic Chemistry
Electrochemistry
Cellular Respiration
Photosynthesis  optional
Integration of Metabolism
GENETICS & REPRODUCTION
MCAT course syllabus module 13
Gene Expression
Cellular Reproduction
Mendelian Genetics
Recombination & Mutation
Molecular Biology Lab
Human Genetics
DIVERSITY OF LIFE
MCAT course syllabus module 14
Viruses
Bacteria & Archaea
Protista  taxonomy optional
Fungi
Plants  optional
Animals  taxonomy optional
Embryology
MCAT course 
syllabus module 15
Tissues & Histology
HUMAN PHYSIOLOGY
Nervous System
Sensory Systems
Endocrine System
Musculoskeletal System
Cardiovascular System
Blood
Respiratory System
Lymphatic System & Immunity
Urinary System
Digestive System
Reproductive System
POPULATION BIOLOGY
MCAT course syllabus module 16
Evolution
Ecology
ELECTROMAGNETISM, LIGHT, & MODERN PHYSICS
MCAT course syllabus module 17
Electricity
DC Current
Magnetism
Electomagnetic Induction
AC Current
MCAT course syllabus module 18
Properties of Light
Geometric Optics
Wave Optics
MCAT course syllabus module 19
Modern Physics  relativity optional
Molecular Spectroscopy
Nuclear Physics
MCAT course 
syllabus module 20Overall Review
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