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Course Report

40 Chemistry Courses to Expand Your Knowledge of the World

There are quite a number of high-quality courses you can take for free online to learn various aspects of beginning or advanced chemistry!

Photo by Louis Reed on Unsplash

Look at the world around you–what do you see? There is all this “stuff” that things are made of, and there is even more “stuff” that we can’t see (for example oxygen or microorganisms). This is why chemistry has been and always will be relevant. But chemistry is even more important in our modern technological age where we step on brakes with ceramic composite brake pads, look through lightweight glasses with polycarbonate lenses, play tennis with carbon-fiber racquets, and manufacturing biological protein-based medicines. We are even starting to create lab-grown meat! All this points to the foundational nature of chemistry, which covers the physical building blocks of “stuff”, whether it is inorganic or organic. So if you could benefit from learning about this further, or want improve your understanding of the world around us, check out this list of courses below–and get your chemistry on!

Quick note: While many of these courses do come with fees, all of them are available to audit in full or in part. If you’re new to MOOCs and want to learn more (including how fees work in these courses), check out our Beginner’s Guide to Massive Open Online Courses.  

Intro to Chemistry Courses
General Chemistry Courses
Biochemistry Courses
Organic Chemistry Courses
Atmospheric Chemistry Courses
Physical Chemistry Courses
Materials Chemistry Courses
Analytical Chemistry Courses
NMR Spectroscopy Courses
Medicinal Chemistry Courses
Food Chemistry Courses
Teaching Chemistry Courses

Intro to Chemistry Courses

Introduction to Chemistry: Structures and Solutions
Duke University via Coursera
This is an introductory course for students with limited background in chemistry; basic concepts such as atomic and molecular structure, solutions, phases of matter, and quantitative problem solving will be emphasized with the goal of preparing students for further study in chemistry.
★★★★★ (3 ratings)

Introduction to Solid State Chemistry
Massachusetts Institute of Technology via edX
Learn chemical principles by examining materials with examples from energy generation and storage to emerging technologies.
★★★★★ (3 ratings)

Introduction to Chemistry: Reactions and Ratios
Duke University via Coursera
This is an introductory course for students with limited background in chemistry; basic concepts involved in chemical reactions, stoichiometry, the periodic table, periodic trends, nomenclature, and chemical problem solving will be emphasized with the goal of preparing students for further study in chemistry as needed for many science, health, and policy professions..
★★★★★ (8 ratings)

Chemistry
Modern States via Independent
This course covers material that is usually taught in one-year college course in general chemistry.

General Chemistry Courses

Chemistry
University of Kentucky via Coursera
This course is designed to cover subjects in advanced high school chemistry courses, correlating to the standard topics as established by the American Chemical Society. This course is a precursor to the Advanced Chemistry Coursera course. Areas that are covered include atomic structure, periodic trends, compounds, reactions and stoichiometry, bonding, and thermochemistry.
★★★★★ (4 ratings)

Exploring Everyday Chemistry
University of York via FutureLearn
Explore the organic chemistry behind perfume, medicine, brewing and sport from one of the UK’s leading universities
★★★★★ (4 ratings)

General Chemistry: Concept Development and Application
Rice University via Coursera
This course will cover the topics of a full year, two semester General Chemistry course. We will use a free on-line textbook, Concept Development Studies in Chemistry, available via Rice’s Connexions project. The fundamental concepts in the course will be introduced via the Concept Development Approach developed at Rice University.
★★★★☆ (5 ratings)

Discovering Science: Chemical Products
University of Leeds via FutureLearn
With chemistry providing us an endless amount of possibilities, what would you choose to develop?
★★★★☆ (6 ratings)

Biochemistry Courses

Principles of Biochemistry
Harvard University via edX
This introduction to biochemistry explores the molecules of life, starting at simple building blocks and culminating in complex metabolism.
★★★★★ (7 ratings)

Biochemistry: the Molecules of Life
University of East Anglia via FutureLearn
Explore the impact of biochemistry on bioenergy and health, discovering why graduates are in demand; with the Biochemical Society.
★★★★★ (3 ratings)

Biochemistry: Biomolecules, Methods, and Mechanisms
Massachusetts Institute of Technology via edX
Enhance your scientific thinking and data analysis skills with this in-depth adventure through biochemistry.
★★★★☆ (22 ratings)

Chemical Biology
University of Geneva via Coursera
Here, we deconstruct chemical biology into its core components, and repackage the material. In the process we build up for each student a practical and theoretical knowledge bank that will set these students on their way to understanding and designing their own chemical biology experiments.

Catalytic Conversions for Biobased Chemicals and Products
Wageningen University via edX
Design new (bio)catalytic conversion routes that allow you to use biobased feedstocks to their highest potential as building blocks for chemicals, materials and fuels.

Capstone Chemistry and Technology for Sustainability
Wageningen University via edX

This Capstone project is the final part of the MicroMasters programme in Chemistry and Technology for Sustainability. Design a sustainable biobased process and evaluate the technological, societal and economic impact to finish the MicroMasters program.

Organic Chemistry Courses

Organic Chemistry 1
Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi via Swayam
Here, Students will be trained to improve their factual, conceptual, procedural and metacognitive knowledge. The scientific explanation given in the video contents makes use of the following components: Presentations, chemical structures, figures, tables, images, 3D-animations, white board demonstration, use of molecular models, paper 3D-models, mirrors etc.
★★★★★ (8 ratings)

The Chemistry of Life
Kyoto University via edX
Learn how to generate ideas at the interface between chemistry and biology.
★☆☆☆☆ (1 rating)

Mechanisms in Organic Chemistry
Indian Institute of Technology Bombay via Swayam
The course can be broadly classified as a Physical Organic Chemistry course. Understanding organic reaction mechanisms are extremely useful in predicting the products and improving the reaction efficiency.

Introductory Organic Chemistry I
Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune via Swayam
This course focuses on organic chemistry, the chemistry of carbon. Carbon based compounds; the organic compounds are the building blocks of life on earth. This course highlights the fundamentals of organic chemistry.

Atmospheric Chemistry Courses

Atmospheric Chemistry: Planets and Life Beyond Earth
University of Leeds via FutureLearn
Learn about the atmospheric chemistry of planets and celestial bodies and explore the possibility of finding life beyond Earth.
★★★★★ (37 ratings)

Discovering Science: Atmospheric Chemistry
University of Leeds via FutureLearn
What can we learn about Earth, and other planets in and beyond our solar system, by studying their atmospheres?
★★★★★ (2 ratings)

Introduction to Geochemistry
Kyoto University via edX
The goal of the course is to apply chemical principles to understand the natural (non-living) world around us and appreciate its complexity.

Physical Chemistry Courses

Introduction to Physical Chemistry
University of Manchester via Coursera
The course covers the key concepts of three of the principal topics in first-year undergraduate physical chemistry: thermodynamics, kinetics and quantum mechanics. These three topics cover whether or not reactions occur, how fast they go and what is actually going on at the sub-atomic scale.
★★★★☆ (12 ratings)

Statistical Molecular Thermodynamics
University of Minnesota via Coursera
This introductory physical chemistry course examines the connections between molecular properties and the behavior of macroscopic chemical systems.
★★★★☆ (4 ratings)

Biophysical chemistry
Indian Institute of Technology Delhi via Swayam
This introductory course in biophysical chemistry touches on some of the fundamentals of this field. Starting from basic elements in protein structure, the course covers other aspects like forces involved in protein folding, protein folding energy landscape, mechanisms of protein folding, mixing and relaxation techniques commonly used to study fast protein folding, and finally winds up with discussion on some spectroscopic tools.

Materials Chemistry Courses

Science in Art: The Chemistry of Art Materials and Conservation
Trinity College via edX
Learn the chemistry behind the visual arts, and how an understanding of art’s material properties helps preserve our cultural heritage.
★★★★★ (1 rating)

Cement Chemistry and Sustainable Cementitious Materials
École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne via edX
Learn the basics of cement chemistry and laboratory best practices for assessment of its key properties.

Analytical Chemistry Courses

Basic Analytical Chemistry
The University of Tokyo via edX
Gain a physical understanding of the principles of analytical chemistry and their application in scientific research.

Analytical Chemistry
Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur via Swayam
It will give the opportunity to study and use specialized instruments and specific methods to separate, identify, and quantify the unknown substance. Spectroscopic technique will consist of applications of atomic absorption spectroscopy, atomic emission spectroscopy, ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy, X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy and Mössbauer spectroscopy.

NMR Spectroscopy Courses

Introduction to Molecular Spectroscopy
University of Manchester via Coursera
The course introduces the three key spectroscopic methods used by chemists and biochemists to analyse the molecular and electronic structure of atoms and molecules. These are UV/Visible , Infra-red (IR) and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopies. The content is presented using short focussed and interactive screencast presentations accompanied by formative quizzes to probe understanding of the key concepts presented.
★★★★☆ (5 ratings)

Basic Steps in Magnetic Resonance
École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne via edX
A MOOC to discover basic concepts and a wide range of intriguing applications of magnetic resonance to physics, chemistry, and biology

Medicinal Chemistry Courses

Discovering Science: Medicinal Chemistry
University of Leeds via FutureLearn
What role does chemistry play in healthcare and our ability to diagnose and treat patients?
★★★★★ (8 ratings)

The Science of Medicines
Monash University via FutureLearn
Learn the science behind how and why medicines work, and what can improve patient’s treatment, with this free online course.
★★★★★ (7 ratings)

Industrial Pharmacy I
H.N.B Garhwal University (A Central University) Srinagar Garhwal via Swayam
The course is one of the papers of Fifth semester of B. Pharmacy syllabi approved by Pharmacy Council of India (PCI) and is adopted uniformly by all the pharmacy institutions and Universities throughout the country. All other learners who want to learn the basics of industrial pharmacy can get the vital benefit out of this course.
★★★★☆ (9 ratings)

Medicinal Chemistry: The Molecular Basis of Drug Discovery
Davidson College via edX
Gain a better understanding of the drug discovery process to learn how safe, effective drugs are developed and optimized.
★★★★★ (5 ratings)

Introduction to Stewart’s Model of Physiological Acid-Base Chemistry.
University of the Witwatersrand via edX
Aimed at physicians, ICU nurses and others working in acute care, this course provides an introduction to Peter Stewart’s model of clinical acid-base chemistry.

Drug Discovery & Medicinal Chemistry
Davidson College via edX
Learn how scientists in drug development modify and test molecules to improve potency and reduce toxicity. Discover the criteria that regulatory agencies use to approve molecules that are shown to be both safe and effective as pharmaceuticals for the treatment and prevention of diseases.

Food Chemistry Courses

Science & Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to Soft Matter Science (chemistry)
Harvard University via edX
Top chefs and Harvard researchers explore how everyday cooking and haute cuisine can illuminate basic principles in physics and engineering.
★★★★★ (11 ratings)

The Science of Gastronomy
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology via Coursera
This course introduces a number of basic scientific principles underpinning the methodology of cooking, food preparation and the enjoyment of food. All topics covered have a strong basis in biology, chemistry, and physics application.
★★★★☆ (68 ratings)

Teaching Chemistry Courses

Teaching Practical Science: Chemistry
National STEM Learning Centre via FutureLearn
Discover approaches to engage 14-16 year old students through practical lessons in chemistry with this CPD for science teachers.

Teaching Primary Science: Chemistry
National STEM Learning Centre via FutureLearn
Develop your knowledge of chemistry to support your pupils’ learning as part of the primary science curriculum.

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Bobby Brady

Bobby has successfully utilized MOOCs in his professional career twice, transitioning from the service industry to IT support and then again to Development. He now works full time as an edtech consultant and contractor helping students from all over the world learn React and JavaScript.

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