Most students seem to agree that STEM classes are hard – at least harder than the rest. Certainly, chemistry is one of these classes that students complain about the most.
While the majority of the students that fall into this category may be known for wasting enormous mental energy trying to figure out why these classes are such a thorn in their side, it is definitely a better option to try and find out how to overcome the difficulty instead.
In case you don’t know it yet, one of the most effective options a student can use to overcome both the dread and the difficulty that often surrounds the learning of chemistry is to take advantage of websites that offer quality teaching and learning resources on the subject.
However, in trying to make your choices among these websites, you may be confronted with such an array of them that you don’t know which ones to pitch your tent with. This way, your initial problem might even get further compounded – that is, unless something is done to help with your decision-making.
In this article, we are reviewing more than 25 top websites that have what it takes to help you in learning chemistry better and possibly even find hidden fun doing so.
Depending on your exact need, my commentary on each of these websites will help you to have a good idea about what to expect when you finally click through.
At the end of the day, I will share with you what I consider the best of the best among the sampled websites and my reason for the pick – to ensure you focus all your study time and energy on your schoolwork only rather than in searching for where to get help with it.
So, are you ready for the ride? Let’s go!
As the official platform of the globally central authority in both academic and industrial chemistry, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry’s website publishes authoritative articles, events, news, updates, and more that are related to the body’s field of jurisdiction.
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As the name already suggests, ThoughtCo’s A to Z Chemistry Dictionary is an online resource that includes a list of important chemistry and chemical engineering words and their brief definitions and examples.
Each entry in the dictionary includes a link to a more detailed discussion of the terminology in question.
Affiliated to the University of Colorado, PhET is a platform dedicated to the provision of interactive simulations for the learning of STEM subjects.
The simulations can be run online or they can be downloaded locally all for free. Official information on the platform claims that it has up to 806 million of these simulations covering physics, math, earth science, biology, and chemistry.
The chemistry section can be accessed on the website.
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This YouTube channel with over 1.3 million subscribers covers tutorials in general chemistry, organic chemistry, and biochemistry besides biology, physics, math, and other subjects.
According to the host of the channel, his goal is to “provide the best resource for self-education in existence… my videos have just enough detail for high school and undergraduate students but virtually engaging and general enough for the common viewer that just wants to learn a few things”.
Although the channel covers many other school subjects as we have seen, it is obvious that it has a special focus on chemistry and chemistry-related subjects.
If students realized that everything they are, do, or are surrounded with might involve some chemistry, they would probably enjoy rather than endure every chemistry class.
Thus, Chemistry Now focuses on making the subject come alive in student’s daily lives by drawing from day-to-day examples such as running, eating, or getting cold.
A product of a partnership between the US National Science Foundation (NSF), NBC Learn, and the National Science Teachers Association, this service focuses on publishing video tutorials that dwell on such non-classroom-like topics as “The Chemistry of Fear and Fright”, “the Chemistry of Cheeseburger”, and “the Chemistry of Chocolate”.
These videos are published at the rate of one per week.
While Chemistry Now is especially recommended for middle school students, there is no doubt that high school and even college students are going to learn a lot from those fun chemistry topics to help them make a better sense of traditionally more abstract topics.
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Also known as ChemEd DL, this website is basically an online collaborative community of chemistry students and teachers from far and near.
Thus, here, you should expect to meet individuals involved in real-world chemistry research as they share the procedures and the results of their work.
Also to be expected are new resources concerning the subject that someone may have come across. But it seems that what students love the most about this platform is that they can get their tough questions answered by more knowledgeable members sooner than saying ‘COVID’. ChemEd DL is currently hosted by the Michigan-based Hope College Department of Chemistry.
The American Chemical Society (ACS) exists to support scientific inquiry in the area of chemistry by giving grants for lab equipment, promoting chemistry competitions and other activities (such as the US National Chemistry Olympiad), hosting conferences, and more.
One major way that the ACS carries on with their support for the learning of chemistry is through their ‘Chemistry For Life’ sub-site.
Chemistry For Life is a section of the society’s website where they provide teaching and learning resources for teachers and students respectively. These resources are categorized into those for high school students, those for undergraduates, as well as those for graduate and postgraduate students.
On Chemistry For Life, you can also find links to information about various chemistry-related activities (such as National Chemistry Week and fun chemistry-related activities for kids).
They also have a store where you can buy fun items that help the learning of the subject such as a periodic table or scroll pen.
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The popular topical question-and-answer platform, Stack Exchange, has a chemistry site among its many other boards.
Given its reputation-based self-moderating feature, the Stack Exchange Chemistry site is a choice place to connect with high-value chemistry coaches/mentors one on one, or to get tough questions answered by trusted minds without any hassles.
This platform combines a specialized search engine and directory that are built to link to top chemistry websites – that is, those with the richest content.
It spots a search bar where students can enter keywords and look up chemistry-themed websites. It is supposed that the richest of those pages appear at the top of the SERP list just as it is with Google – only now, it is just chemistry-related pages that are linked to.
The directory section of this site is arranged alphabetically and includes categories like analytical chemistry, biochemistry, chemical databases, chemical dictionaries, chemical encyclopedias, chemical software, general chemistry, history of chemistry, organic chemistry, polymer chemistry, and even jobs for chemists, and more.
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As the name implies, Chem4Kids is a site for basic chemistry.
Designed to ‘catch them young’ with chemistry knowledge, this site boasts such elementary topics as the definition of chemistry, states of matter, chemical reactions, the structure of atoms, as well as elements and the periodic table.
The site also spots fun activities and quizzes that help to drive the lessons home in a way kids can relate to.
This site is managed under the ACS Chemistry for Life project. But unlike the main site, this is specifically devoted to materials that are suitable for middle school chemistry students.
Here, you can find both teaching and learning materials like lesson plans, multimedia, workshops, activities, and recent webinars.
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Study.com’s rich collection of chemistry courses are available to both high school and college students absolutely free of charge.
They include textual as well as video lessons that are geared towards making the learning of the subject fun. Some of the course sections available on this website include Chemistry 101: General Chemistry, High School Chemistry: Help and Review, Science Experiments and Projects, College Chemistry: Tutoring Solutions, GED Science: Life, Physical and Chemical, and many more.
There is no doubt that calculations top the list of what makes chemistry to be so difficult. To help in this regard, Stanford University created a site devoted to engines that help to make these calculations much easier.
For instance, with one of these engines called Molar Conversions, users can calculate molar masses faster and without difficulties by simply inputting figures and clicking ‘convert’ just like what obtains in currency conversion pages. This way, a user can easily convert from say moles to particles or grams to moles.
Another engine available on this site is an interactive periodic table where all you need to do is place a cursor over the name of an element to view a repertoire of information about it. There are more like this.
However, as of May 2021, this site is still under construction. So, it is available only to the users of Internet Explorer 4.0 or later.
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High School chemistry can hardly get easier than with ThinkQuest’s ‘CheMystery’ library. It is basically an interactive tool that presents high school chemistry materials in a fun style and includes measurements, formulae, analyses, models, and more.
If you are both a chemistry student as well as a fan of comic books, this is for you.
This site, managed by the Chemistry Department of the University of Kentucky, makes the periodic table fun to understand by having a collection of comic books related to each element.
A colorful periodic table feature is presented. If you click on an element, a list of comic books related to that element pops out. Reading those comic books, the understanding of the element in question supposedly turns from drudgery to fun.
The ‘Delights of Chemistry’ Library, on the University of Leeds website, consists of photo libraries, GIFs, animations, videos, experiments, and demonstrations meant to help students and teachers in high school with the teaching and learning of the subject.
This site is managed by the School of Chemistry at Leeds University in the UK.
The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) may be considered as the UK equivalent of the American Chemical Society (ACS).
The aim of the RSC is to encourage collaboration between scientists working on chemistry-related projects while also giving the public access to the resources and materials issued from those projects.
RSC has a website where they publish the results of new research while recognizing and celebrating the professionals behind that research.
This way, not only do they give the larger society access to fresh information in the field of chemistry, but they also spark new ideas challenging the younger generations to a greater vision in the field.
Khan Academy is a free online classroom service for students. The platform boasts many sections built for students, tutors, and parents.
It includes practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard that enables users to study at their own pace.
The platform offers one of the best available online sources for the teaching and learning of organic chemistry.
The instructors try using the idea of physical construction to show the students how carbon forms covalent bonds with itself and other elements resulting in a huge array of organic compounds and living things.
This is a portal that connects users to free chemistry courses from some of the most respected institutions across the world.
These courses span quantum mechanics, chemical equations, chemical equilibrium, atomic structure, tips for learning chemistry, and more.
Some of the free courses that you can access through this website include a Harvard University item entitled ‘University Chemistry: Molecular Foundations and Global Frontiers’, a University of Tokyo course entitled ‘Basic Analytical Chemistry’, and another from Davidson Medical Centre entitled ‘Drug Discovery and Medical Chemistry’. There are more courses like that linked to this website.
This website publishes huge caches of information about elements, chemicals, and chemistry in general. For instance, all the elements of the periodic table are arranged in alphabetical order in a tabular format that includes their symbols, names, and atomic weight.
They also offer tools like a chemical equation balancer as well as calculators for molar mass, empirical formulas, Sig Figs, and more.
This is a rich repository of chemistry information for college and high school students.
The site includes categories like pharmaceutical intermediates, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemical engineering, dyes and pigments, chemical reagents, and more.
Based in Germany, this site is offered in both German and English. It is devoted to publishing news that has to do with chemicals and findings in chemistry as well as products, and more.
This site has a lot of information related to the study of chemistry for students. You can search for any keyword as well as look up a great number of sections.
Some of these sections are devoted to chemistry students between the ages of 14 and 16, CIE (Cambridge International) A-Level students, atomic structure and bonding, inorganic chemistry, physical chemistry, instrumental analysis, the properties of organic compounds, chemistry calculations, textbook suggestions, download links for chemistry syllabuses, and more.
This site is devoted to both teachers and students of chemistry. It includes teaching and learning resources so huge they are spread across 18,000 pages that include texts, multimedia, exercises, and tools.
A section of the site tagged ‘Chemistry In Our Time’ is targeted at making chemistry knowledge relevant in the students’ everyday life.
This is a free and unique database for chemical structures. It mainly links users to data sources via a search tool and categorized sections. You can search for these structures by chemical names or by chemical structures.
This site, owned and managed by the Royal Society of Chemistry, claims to have up to 103 million of these chemical structures from 276 data sources as of May 2021.
Another property of the Royal Society of Chemistry, this site publishes news and articles related to discoveries, history, current affairs, and more that are related to chemicals and chemistry.
I have done my bit to present these websites to you. They are all great learning repositories for the learning of chemistry. However, as hinted earlier, the choice you make among them will certainly depend on your level and your particular need.
In any case, after considering the entire list, my number one pick turns out to be the IUPAC Website. But why?
The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry is, by far, the most recognized global authority focused on the advancement of chemistry and the determination of chemical standards.
There is no student of chemistry or chemical industrialist anywhere on Earth that can afford not to be conversant with the IUPAC official website since it is where one can get the most authoritative and current information related to the subject no matter one’s location across the world.
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