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MAKING ORGANIC CHEMISTRY FUN

Compiled/partly written by Melvin Durai Email Compiled/partly written by Melvin Durai
December 2016
MAKING ORGANIC CHEMISTRY FUN

Many a student struggling with math or science has turned to an online Khan Academy tutorial. Founded by Louisiana native Salman Khan, Khan Academy has produced more than 6,500 videos that have been viewed almost a billion times.

Now another educator of South Asian origin hopes to get students interested in organic chemistry through online videos.

“The field of organic chemistry has made a tremendous mistake in not showing students and the general public its importance and why they should love it—or at the very least, appreciate it,” said Neil Garg, professor and vice chair for education in UCLA’s department of chemistry and biochemistry.

Garg, who was named California Professor of the Year in 2015, has worked with his students to develop BACON (Biology and Chemistry Online Notes), a set of online tutorials that show the connection between organic chemistry and topics such as sports, health, genetics, and even TV shows.

“I enjoy thinking about how to teach students the relevance of organic chemistry in an engaging way,” Garg said. “So many students don’t appreciate organic chemistry and the important impact it makes on our lives. It’s a teaching challenge to help change students’ perceptions about organic chemistry, and I welcome the challenge.”


Compiled and partly written by Indian humorist MELVIN DURAI, author of the novel Bala Takes the Plunge.

[Comments? Contributions? We would love to hear from you about Chai Time. If you have contributions, please email us at melvin@melvindurai.com. We welcome jokes, quotes, online clips, and more.]



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