Neil K Garg
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
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4.0
Overall Rating
Based on 59 User s
Easiness 2.8 / 5 How easy the class is, 1 being extremely difficult and 5 being easy peasy.
Clarity 4.2 / 5 How clear the professor is, 1 being extremely unclear and 5 being very clear.
Workload 3.0 / 5 How light the workload is, 1 being extremely heavy and 5 being extremely light.
Helpfulness 3.7 / 5 How helpful the professor is, 1 being not helpful at all and 5 being extremely helpful.

TOP TAGS

  • Snazzy Dresser

GRADE DISTRIBUTIONS

15.0%
12.5%
10.0%
7.5%
5.0%
2.5%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

14.3%
11.9%
9.5%
7.1%
4.8%
2.4%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

14.4%
12.0%
9.6%
7.2%
4.8%
2.4%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

15.5%
12.9%
10.3%
7.8%
5.2%
2.6%
0.0%
A+
A
A-
B+
B
B-
C+
C
C-
D+
D
D-
F

Grade distributions are collected using data from the UCLA Registrar’s Office.

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Reviews (55)

2 of 6
2 of 6
Add your review...
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 20, 2013

Why would you disrespect Professor Garg like that? The definition of a good teacher is definitely relative to the individual but Garg is one of the best professors I have come across in my career as a student. He is truly passionate about what he teaches but tries so hard to level out with his students. I will admit his material was easier than Hardinger's exams but if you miss points they can add up really quick (i.e. miss one reagent in the retrosynth problem and that's 6 points...the difference between A+ and A...forget to label a carbocation? that's 93..an A-) You either know the material or you don't. He is not "easy" but if you study hard he is. He gives you EC to make up for it. If you don't like the way his class is structured...resign your A+ and GTFO... taking Garg for granted smh...

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Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 20, 2013

Neil is one of the nicest, most compassionate professors out there. He'll meet with you on your schedule, he'll stay late for office hours, he'll go out of his way to help you learn the material. He'll hold your hand all the way to an A+ if you let him. I mean, he makes you capes, who does that? It's like he wants you to get into an airplane turbine accident (jkjk).

That being said, while he is one of the nicest people around, as a teacher, I'd say he's average. He teaches very surface level organic chemistry. He'll teach the reaction, sometimes the mechanism, occasionally the reasoning behind certain things such as why things are directed meta/ortho/para for EAS reactions. I think that's why many people think he's a good teacher, because he simply does not teach all that much. Anyone can write the reactions on the board like he does. Of course, with that being said, the alternative at UCLA is Hardinger who, with no doubt, will give ample explanations behind why the mechanism is the way it is, but the down side is that this extra material is not just presented as supplementary material, but as things you have to know on the test. Neil > Hardinger 4ever.

In terms of difficulty, due to the structure of the class (I'd say 75% memorizing, 25% problem solving), if you memorize reactions and make a few connections with them/recognize patterns, you'll be fine (A+ fine). You also have extra credit constantly hurled at your face. All the time. ALL THE TIME.

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Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 19, 2013

This class is definitely one of the best classes I've taken at UCLA. I noticed some of the reviews say you don't learn much about organic chemistry, but you do. It is not difficult at all to get an A if you put time into the class. Sure, my name was one of the ~20 up there that had an A going into the final, but plenty of people who did not have their names up their also got an A.

There is PLENTY of extra credit for you to earn. Each test has ~5 points of extra credit. The ringtone is 5 points. And you can get 15 points of extra credit for making a video. That's already 35 points.... nearly 10% of your grade. So not only is it possible to get an A, an A+ is NOWHERE near "impossible." He says to spend your time wisely, but the extra credit was so worth it in my opinion (may be hindsight).

I got an A in Neil's class, and it was challenging, but very doable. Here are my "secrets" (as Neil called it) to getting an A+:

1. Make flash cards of all the reactions as he teaches them. Review them about 10 times a week (I suggest 5 times per night, 2 nights per week).

2. The first midterm is very easy. It speeds up so much after the first midterm, don't fall behind.

3. If you think he taught a lot between M1 and M2? M2 to the final is even worse. Study all the reactions.

4. Neil recommends to do problem sets right when they come out. I say try them but don't spend too much time. Wait for the solution manual and work alongside it. Learn from your mistakes don't grieve on them.

5. Do the practice tests with other people and talk about the tests. You'll remember things better that way. Don't be stubborn.

6. Go to OH and chill.

7. Make an awesome music video with a bridge scene.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 18, 2013

Definitely my favorite professor at UCLA so far!! Very approachable and caring. He keeps lectures light with demos and videos, but there's still a lot of chemistry. All notes are from what he writes on the board. Be sure to keep up with lectures and do the problem sets!! The night before the final, I had to cram, because I didn't realize we had gone over SO many reactions in just two weeks. For the final, also look over mistakes you made during midterms, because he'll probably put it on the final (if a majority of people got it wrong).

I found discussion very helpful so I definitely recommend that! The TAs can give extra tips and go over concepts that Garg may not have focused on in lecture.

Extra credit is not hard to get. Just look over the random facts, dates, molecules he mentions in class. And do the ochem video (if you have time)!

Garg made 14D one of my favorite classes ever, and I wish I could take more classes with him! Definitely recommend him!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 17, 2013

As the reviews say, he is a marvelous professor. The only professor in my undergraduate career so far who has actually made attending lectures enjoyable and pleasurable for me.

However, if you truly seek more knowledge, take Hardinger instead. There were so many questions unanswered as he threw "facts" at us with no explanation that I was forced to read off of Hardinger's 14D powerpoints from his website.

Also, this is an extremely easy class for a B, but not for an A. There is no curve, and you need a solid 95.0 for an A. When the 2nd midterm scores were released, he also listed a couple of names who currently had that "solid" 95.0 or higher, and let me tell you that there was only about 20 names listed out of the 375 students in class. That means only about 5% of the students were maintaining A's because screwing up 1 question on a test that has over 30 questions will put you on the borderline.

However, that A is very easy to obtain for those who can cram every reaction because that is all there is to it for this class. Know your reagents and products and the arrow-pushing mechanism, and you are practically set for a good grade as there is no effort to learn anything else.

Overall, really, really good professor to take. But maybe not for those who wish to learn more about organic chemistry. But what can I say, it is the 14 series and a cop-out to learning chemistry. I think they should just force the 30 series upon the life science majors.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 17, 2013

Garg definitely makes a hard class like Chem14D much simpler and enjoyable. He does a good job identifying patterns and basic concepts to understand, making the reaction mechanisms that much easier to learn; otherwise, I would imagine straight up memorizing every reaction mechanism would have been overwhelming.
For tips on how to do well, definitely try to review the reactions every other day if not daily, and at the very least try to stay on track with the practice problems. The problems really help with learning the mechanisms, so even if they don't count for points, it's in your best interest to do them. If you have questions, you have a lot of resources: discussion sections, office hours, VOH. You get extra credit from attending discussion and participating in clicker quizzes, so going to class can only help you. What I also like about Garg's class is that even if you didn't do so well on a midterm, you can make up the points through an extra credit project--be warned, though, that unless you think you can make a quality project, you should probably put your time into studying instead.
Anyways, big thumbs up for Garg, and have fun with OChem!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 17, 2013

ABSOLUTELY 100% TAKE GARG FOR 14D

You will NOT regret it. 14D would have been hell for me if it weren't for Garg. I ended up with an A+ in the class thanks to him. He is seriously the BEST professor I have had so far at UCLA.

TO SUCCEED IN HIS CLASS:
1. Go to EVERY lecture. He is so funny and interesting that you will want to go anyway. DON'T BE LAZY.
2. Do the ringtone/music video extra credit projects!! They are super fun if you do them with friends and they help you remember chemistry for the exams. I was playing my ringtone and music video song in my head while I was taking the midterms and the final.
3. Make a study guide for synthesis problems! Make a "How to make a..." study guide and list all the different functional groups and how to make them. This study guide will save you! Synthesis problems are no joke.
4. Go to office hours! Even if you don't have a question, you should go anyway to get to know Garg. He is so chill and approachable, so take advantage of that.

Pretty sure Garg only teaches in the Spring, so WAIT FOR HIM. He is amazing, and if he taught biochem I would take him again without a doubt.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 16, 2013

Neil is the best professor I have had in my 2 years at UCLA. To be successful in his class, it is essential to stay on top of the material. Make sure to read through his lecture notes daily. Also, condensing his lecture notes is greatly helpful. The problem sets that he provides are awesome. I would recommend reading the lecture notes and attempting to understand all of the concepts and reaction mechanisms before beginning the problem sets, and then approaching the problem sets like they are practice exams. It is crucial to memorize all reaction conditions in order to be successful in 14D.

Many students struggle with the synthesis problems. In order to solve these, you must be greatly familiar with all of the reactions.

Thinking about each reaction in the context below should help a lot w/ synthesis
(To make ______ start with ______ and use _____)

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 15, 2013

Neil Garg is easily one of the best professors at UCLA. Everything you hear about him-to how friendly he is, how great of a teacher he is, and how fun his class is- is true. There's a reason people wait to take him in the Spring. I took his class this past Spring and it was one of the best classes I have taken at UCLA. On the last day of lecture he got a standing ovation, which he definitely deserved. Neil challenges you; however his class is doable and getting an A is definitely possible. He doesn't care how you did in the past chemistry series, and every person has a chance to get an A. Additionally, he offers numerous opportunities to get extra credit (including music videos, going to discussion or making a ringtone) and those extra credit opportunities really help. He also is very approachable and if you introduce yourself he'll remember you for life. If you take him make sure to also take the honors course-it's a super lowkey way to learn more and get to know Neil better. Overall if you have the chance take Chem 14D with Neil-you won't regret it. Also shout out to his amazing TA's-if Mike is a TA next spring then definitely take his section. Seriously best class and teacher at UCLA.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 15, 2013

This was one of the best classes I took at UCLA. The professor and TAs are fantastic. No matter who your TA is, he/she will undoubtedly be great. The class covers material that is very challenging, but that does not mean that the class itself is impossible. Chem14D is a lot of work, but Garg teaches you to think in a different way. Not only do you have to memorize many different reactions, you have to be able to problem solve, recognize patterns, think forward and backward, and be creative. Garg and this class both teaches and forces you to have a deeper understanding of the material. That being said, do not be scared away by Ochem. This is the best class you could ever want from Ochem. The reactions, though tricky at first, become secondary to being able to problem solve. Some tips for success are to stay on top of the problem sets and lectures. It is easy to fall behind and muddle everything together. Memorize everything, and do it a couple of days before the test. Finally, think about the reactions. This will help you on the exams. After you've memorized everything, synthesize all you know together. Make patterns, find similarities and differences, and understand why. If you do that, you'll come out with a fantastic grade and a deep satisfaction knowing you can solve any o chem problem puzzle thrown your way!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 20, 2013

Why would you disrespect Professor Garg like that? The definition of a good teacher is definitely relative to the individual but Garg is one of the best professors I have come across in my career as a student. He is truly passionate about what he teaches but tries so hard to level out with his students. I will admit his material was easier than Hardinger's exams but if you miss points they can add up really quick (i.e. miss one reagent in the retrosynth problem and that's 6 points...the difference between A+ and A...forget to label a carbocation? that's 93..an A-) You either know the material or you don't. He is not "easy" but if you study hard he is. He gives you EC to make up for it. If you don't like the way his class is structured...resign your A+ and GTFO... taking Garg for granted smh...

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 20, 2013

Neil is one of the nicest, most compassionate professors out there. He'll meet with you on your schedule, he'll stay late for office hours, he'll go out of his way to help you learn the material. He'll hold your hand all the way to an A+ if you let him. I mean, he makes you capes, who does that? It's like he wants you to get into an airplane turbine accident (jkjk).

That being said, while he is one of the nicest people around, as a teacher, I'd say he's average. He teaches very surface level organic chemistry. He'll teach the reaction, sometimes the mechanism, occasionally the reasoning behind certain things such as why things are directed meta/ortho/para for EAS reactions. I think that's why many people think he's a good teacher, because he simply does not teach all that much. Anyone can write the reactions on the board like he does. Of course, with that being said, the alternative at UCLA is Hardinger who, with no doubt, will give ample explanations behind why the mechanism is the way it is, but the down side is that this extra material is not just presented as supplementary material, but as things you have to know on the test. Neil > Hardinger 4ever.

In terms of difficulty, due to the structure of the class (I'd say 75% memorizing, 25% problem solving), if you memorize reactions and make a few connections with them/recognize patterns, you'll be fine (A+ fine). You also have extra credit constantly hurled at your face. All the time. ALL THE TIME.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 19, 2013

This class is definitely one of the best classes I've taken at UCLA. I noticed some of the reviews say you don't learn much about organic chemistry, but you do. It is not difficult at all to get an A if you put time into the class. Sure, my name was one of the ~20 up there that had an A going into the final, but plenty of people who did not have their names up their also got an A.

There is PLENTY of extra credit for you to earn. Each test has ~5 points of extra credit. The ringtone is 5 points. And you can get 15 points of extra credit for making a video. That's already 35 points.... nearly 10% of your grade. So not only is it possible to get an A, an A+ is NOWHERE near "impossible." He says to spend your time wisely, but the extra credit was so worth it in my opinion (may be hindsight).

I got an A in Neil's class, and it was challenging, but very doable. Here are my "secrets" (as Neil called it) to getting an A+:

1. Make flash cards of all the reactions as he teaches them. Review them about 10 times a week (I suggest 5 times per night, 2 nights per week).

2. The first midterm is very easy. It speeds up so much after the first midterm, don't fall behind.

3. If you think he taught a lot between M1 and M2? M2 to the final is even worse. Study all the reactions.

4. Neil recommends to do problem sets right when they come out. I say try them but don't spend too much time. Wait for the solution manual and work alongside it. Learn from your mistakes don't grieve on them.

5. Do the practice tests with other people and talk about the tests. You'll remember things better that way. Don't be stubborn.

6. Go to OH and chill.

7. Make an awesome music video with a bridge scene.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 18, 2013

Definitely my favorite professor at UCLA so far!! Very approachable and caring. He keeps lectures light with demos and videos, but there's still a lot of chemistry. All notes are from what he writes on the board. Be sure to keep up with lectures and do the problem sets!! The night before the final, I had to cram, because I didn't realize we had gone over SO many reactions in just two weeks. For the final, also look over mistakes you made during midterms, because he'll probably put it on the final (if a majority of people got it wrong).

I found discussion very helpful so I definitely recommend that! The TAs can give extra tips and go over concepts that Garg may not have focused on in lecture.

Extra credit is not hard to get. Just look over the random facts, dates, molecules he mentions in class. And do the ochem video (if you have time)!

Garg made 14D one of my favorite classes ever, and I wish I could take more classes with him! Definitely recommend him!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 17, 2013

As the reviews say, he is a marvelous professor. The only professor in my undergraduate career so far who has actually made attending lectures enjoyable and pleasurable for me.

However, if you truly seek more knowledge, take Hardinger instead. There were so many questions unanswered as he threw "facts" at us with no explanation that I was forced to read off of Hardinger's 14D powerpoints from his website.

Also, this is an extremely easy class for a B, but not for an A. There is no curve, and you need a solid 95.0 for an A. When the 2nd midterm scores were released, he also listed a couple of names who currently had that "solid" 95.0 or higher, and let me tell you that there was only about 20 names listed out of the 375 students in class. That means only about 5% of the students were maintaining A's because screwing up 1 question on a test that has over 30 questions will put you on the borderline.

However, that A is very easy to obtain for those who can cram every reaction because that is all there is to it for this class. Know your reagents and products and the arrow-pushing mechanism, and you are practically set for a good grade as there is no effort to learn anything else.

Overall, really, really good professor to take. But maybe not for those who wish to learn more about organic chemistry. But what can I say, it is the 14 series and a cop-out to learning chemistry. I think they should just force the 30 series upon the life science majors.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 17, 2013

Garg definitely makes a hard class like Chem14D much simpler and enjoyable. He does a good job identifying patterns and basic concepts to understand, making the reaction mechanisms that much easier to learn; otherwise, I would imagine straight up memorizing every reaction mechanism would have been overwhelming.
For tips on how to do well, definitely try to review the reactions every other day if not daily, and at the very least try to stay on track with the practice problems. The problems really help with learning the mechanisms, so even if they don't count for points, it's in your best interest to do them. If you have questions, you have a lot of resources: discussion sections, office hours, VOH. You get extra credit from attending discussion and participating in clicker quizzes, so going to class can only help you. What I also like about Garg's class is that even if you didn't do so well on a midterm, you can make up the points through an extra credit project--be warned, though, that unless you think you can make a quality project, you should probably put your time into studying instead.
Anyways, big thumbs up for Garg, and have fun with OChem!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 17, 2013

ABSOLUTELY 100% TAKE GARG FOR 14D

You will NOT regret it. 14D would have been hell for me if it weren't for Garg. I ended up with an A+ in the class thanks to him. He is seriously the BEST professor I have had so far at UCLA.

TO SUCCEED IN HIS CLASS:
1. Go to EVERY lecture. He is so funny and interesting that you will want to go anyway. DON'T BE LAZY.
2. Do the ringtone/music video extra credit projects!! They are super fun if you do them with friends and they help you remember chemistry for the exams. I was playing my ringtone and music video song in my head while I was taking the midterms and the final.
3. Make a study guide for synthesis problems! Make a "How to make a..." study guide and list all the different functional groups and how to make them. This study guide will save you! Synthesis problems are no joke.
4. Go to office hours! Even if you don't have a question, you should go anyway to get to know Garg. He is so chill and approachable, so take advantage of that.

Pretty sure Garg only teaches in the Spring, so WAIT FOR HIM. He is amazing, and if he taught biochem I would take him again without a doubt.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 16, 2013

Neil is the best professor I have had in my 2 years at UCLA. To be successful in his class, it is essential to stay on top of the material. Make sure to read through his lecture notes daily. Also, condensing his lecture notes is greatly helpful. The problem sets that he provides are awesome. I would recommend reading the lecture notes and attempting to understand all of the concepts and reaction mechanisms before beginning the problem sets, and then approaching the problem sets like they are practice exams. It is crucial to memorize all reaction conditions in order to be successful in 14D.

Many students struggle with the synthesis problems. In order to solve these, you must be greatly familiar with all of the reactions.

Thinking about each reaction in the context below should help a lot w/ synthesis
(To make ______ start with ______ and use _____)

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 15, 2013

Neil Garg is easily one of the best professors at UCLA. Everything you hear about him-to how friendly he is, how great of a teacher he is, and how fun his class is- is true. There's a reason people wait to take him in the Spring. I took his class this past Spring and it was one of the best classes I have taken at UCLA. On the last day of lecture he got a standing ovation, which he definitely deserved. Neil challenges you; however his class is doable and getting an A is definitely possible. He doesn't care how you did in the past chemistry series, and every person has a chance to get an A. Additionally, he offers numerous opportunities to get extra credit (including music videos, going to discussion or making a ringtone) and those extra credit opportunities really help. He also is very approachable and if you introduce yourself he'll remember you for life. If you take him make sure to also take the honors course-it's a super lowkey way to learn more and get to know Neil better. Overall if you have the chance take Chem 14D with Neil-you won't regret it. Also shout out to his amazing TA's-if Mike is a TA next spring then definitely take his section. Seriously best class and teacher at UCLA.

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
Quarter: N/A
Grade: N/A
June 15, 2013

This was one of the best classes I took at UCLA. The professor and TAs are fantastic. No matter who your TA is, he/she will undoubtedly be great. The class covers material that is very challenging, but that does not mean that the class itself is impossible. Chem14D is a lot of work, but Garg teaches you to think in a different way. Not only do you have to memorize many different reactions, you have to be able to problem solve, recognize patterns, think forward and backward, and be creative. Garg and this class both teaches and forces you to have a deeper understanding of the material. That being said, do not be scared away by Ochem. This is the best class you could ever want from Ochem. The reactions, though tricky at first, become secondary to being able to problem solve. Some tips for success are to stay on top of the problem sets and lectures. It is easy to fall behind and muddle everything together. Memorize everything, and do it a couple of days before the test. Finally, think about the reactions. This will help you on the exams. After you've memorized everything, synthesize all you know together. Make patterns, find similarities and differences, and understand why. If you do that, you'll come out with a fantastic grade and a deep satisfaction knowing you can solve any o chem problem puzzle thrown your way!

Helpful?

0 0 Please log in to provide feedback.
2 of 6
4.0
Overall Rating
Based on 59 Users
Easiness 2.8 / 5 How easy the class is, 1 being extremely difficult and 5 being easy peasy.
Clarity 4.2 / 5 How clear the professor is, 1 being extremely unclear and 5 being very clear.
Workload 3.0 / 5 How light the workload is, 1 being extremely heavy and 5 being extremely light.
Helpfulness 3.7 / 5 How helpful the professor is, 1 being not helpful at all and 5 being extremely helpful.

TOP TAGS

  • Snazzy Dresser
    (2)
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