Free Online Chemistry Classes with Course Descriptions

Free online chemistry classes are offered by a variety of colleges and universities throughout the U.S. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Carnegie Mellon University are two such schools.

Online Chemistry Courses for Credit

There are a number of free chemistry courses available online. These courses may help you avoid paying costly tuition fees, but they don't offer the opportunity of receiving credit. Here at, you'll find inexpensive online resources that can help you easily gain chemistry credit. Our animated video lessons teach chemistry topics at a far lower cost than at a traditional college. You can even review the video transcripts free of charge!

Check out Chemistry 101: General Chemistry, which goes into chemical experimenting, the periodic table, chemical reactions, and more. Some of the chapters in this course include:

  • Chemical Bonding - Topics covered include the Octet Rule, polyatomic ions, covalent compounds, molecular orbit theory, and more.
  • Stoichiometry - Explore the science behind chemical reactions, mole-to-mole ratios, limiting reactants, empirical formulas and hydrates.
  • Chemical Reactions - Examine principles and properties of decomposition, acid-base reactions, the pH scale, redox reactions and combustion reactions.
  • Kinetics - A few of the subjects discussed here include rate constants, activation energy and catalysts, reaction mechanisms and factors that affect chemical reactions.

Where Can I Find Free Online Chemistry Classes?

Many schools offer free online chemistry courses, including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Carnegie Mellon University. While none of these courses confer academic credit, students interested in learning at their own pace can access these materials without registering or enrolling and may view coursework at any time.

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology

MIT offers free online chemistry classes through its OpenCourseWare (OCW) program. OCW provides access to web-based video lectures, class notes and exams used in undergraduate and graduate courses offered during previous semesters. Some of the free online chemistry classes offered at MIT include:

  • Principles of Chemical Science presents an introduction to the chemistry of inorganic, organic and biological molecules. Topics of study include molecular and atomic structures, chemical kinetics, thermodynamics and acid-base equilibrium.
  • Organic Chemistry emphasizes the structure of organic molecules. Students also study the chemistry of substitution and elimination reactions.

Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University's Open Learning Initiative (OLI) offers free online coursework that includes tutoring systems, virtual labs and simulations. The initiative is designed to help students provide feedback about courses so they can be improved. Scientists and faculty develop the coursework, while software engineers help provide user-friendly online learning environments. Free online chemistry classes offered at Carnegie Mellon include:

  • Biochemistry examines such topics as proteins, carbohydrates, nucleic acids and membranes to understand how cell structure affects function. In addition to current versions of Java and Flash, students will need to download MathML to provide accurate notations for chemical equations.
  • Introduction to Chemistry introduces students to the stoichiometry used to measure chemical reactions. Class instruction is provided through videos showing stoichiometry calculations, as well as homework assignments, virtual lab experiments and activities. Students receive an introduction in empirical formulas, limiting reagents, mixture reactions and dimensional analysis.

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