CHEM S-17 Principles of Organic Chemistry

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7-week session | CRN 33668

This course is a one-semester (4-credit) introduction to organic chemistry, with an emphasis on structure and bonding, reaction mechanisms, and chemical reactivity. It covers all of the important functional groups and reactivity needed for applications in medicine and biochemistry, including aldehydes, ketones, carboxylic acids, esters, and amides. Students who succeed in in this course are well prepared for the organic chemistry portion of medical school entrance exams and other similar exams. Students who need a full year of organic chemistry (8 credits) should take CHEM S-20ab, which goes into greater depth with extensive coverage of laboratory organic synthesis, spectroscopy, and other topics needed for more advanced study of the subject.

Course information
Class meetings

Tuesdays, Thursdays, 8:30-11:30 am
Science Center 302

Required laboratory sections meet roughly twice per week for 5 hours each, either 1-6 pm or 6-11 pm. Optional discussion sections to be announced.

Start date

Tuesday, June 26


4 credits

Course tuition


Enrollment status

  • Limited to 75 students
    Registration Closed
  • Prerequisites

    One year of general chemistry (equivalent to CHEM S-1ab) with a grade of C or better, or equivalent preparation (for example, an AP Chemistry course).


    Open to admitted Secondary School Program students by petition. Harvard College students see additional information.



    Logan S. McCarty, PhD.

    Lecturer on Physics and Lecturer on Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University