Top 10 Reasons Why Students Fail in Chemistry

Chemistry is an analytical science, and it requires analytical and critical thinking. Through it, you develop practical skills, such as evaluating data, investigating and solving problems, and evaluating your work.

Students struggle a lot in the subject of chemistry, which is not surprising considering that it is a subject that deals with a lot of things. It is the study of chemical elements, compounds, elements, their reactions, properties, and structure. Chemistry is broad and complex, and students must have a solid foundation to understand the subject.

Concepts are difficult to understand

Chemistry is one of those subjects that seems impossible to learn, like math. The concepts behind them are so abstract that they can feel overwhelming, and the textbooks seem difficult to comprehend. If this sounds like you, you might be relieved to learn that there are actually thousands of students from all over the world who struggle. 

Bad math skills

Chemistry is a science built upon math, in this case, the mathematics of chemistry. People who study chemistry begin by taking a few introductory chemistry courses where they learn the periodic table and atomic structure. From there, they work their way through the four fundamental laws of chemistry, also known as the law of conservation of mass, the law of conservation of energy, the law of conservation of momentum, and the law of chemical combination.

As chemistry students, we’re constantly learning new formulas and equations. However, not all of them will be immediately useful in our daily life. For example, if asked, “What is the volume of a 1.5-liter flask?” you might not be too sure how to answer that question. But it all starts with simple arithmetic.

Not enough effort

Chemistry class can be one of the most dreaded subjects for many students. For many, it’s simply an overwhelming science that doesn’t seem to make sense at all. However, the rewards of learning chemistry go far beyond achieving good grades. 

Bad attitude

Attitude determines your success or failure in the chemistry classroom. The better your attitude, the better your study habits. When you are upbeat and motivated, your study habits will follow suit. You are more likely to pay attention in class, ask questions, and stay organized, all of which lead to better grades and, ultimately, a successful chemistry education. Knowing your attitude and what kind of person you are can help you determine the best study habits for you.


Procrastination is a problem that is felt by all and is an issue that can hinder your overall academic success in chemistry classes. If you are a student who is having a hard time completing the assigned work or falling behind on assignments, take a look at the list below and consider whether one of these reasons may be holding you back from being successful.

Not being prepared

Chemistry class can be one of the most dreaded subjects for many students. For many, it’s simply an overwhelming science that doesn’t seem to make sense at all. However, the rewards of learning chemistry go far beyond achieving good grades. Understanding the basic concepts of chemistry can significantly expand your understanding of the world around you. One day, it will even help you when it’s time to take chemistry exams.


Laziness is the main reason why students fail chemistry. Most students do not want to understand chemistry, and thus, they don’t work hard enough to get the results they earn. This reason and others like laziness, poor time management, and lack of proper facilities make chemistry a difficult subject. 

Lack of reading 

Why is it that students studying chemistry often fail when they are supposed to score high marks in the subject? The answer is very straightforward: they lack reading abilities. Although students complete many other courses during their academic career, chemistry is one of the most challenging subjects. Students find it boring, and it is all about chemistry with good reason.

No textbooks

One way to help students learn chemistry better, faster, and more efficiently is using their textbooks. Unfortunately, some students don’t find textbooks helpful. This is one of the reasons why 52% of college students report they did not succeed in chemistry.


Students fail chemistry for many reasons, but one of the biggest reasons students fail chemistry is cheating on quizzes and exams. Many professors, especially at the college level, use online quizzes or exams to gauge how well their students understand the material. For any student to ace a quiz or exam, the student must have a good understanding of the material. Still, the student must also understand the material well enough to explain it to someone else. The best way to tackle this problem is always to write out explanations for everything you do not understand, not just during lectures but also during practice problems.