Meet the Faculty

Kalju Kahn

Dr. Kahn obtained his Diploma (Cum Laude) in Chemistry from the University of Tartu in 1992. He continued his research at the same institution in the laboratory of Professor Mati Karelson and received M.S. in Chemistry in 1994. After serving as a mentor for the 26th International Chemistry Olympiad, he joined the Ph.D. program at the University of Missouri-Columbia working with Dr. Peter Tipton on the mechanism of urate oxidase. He was awarded Ph.D. degree in Biochemistry in 1998. Dr. Kahn joined the research group of Professor Thomas C. Bruice in 1998. His post-doctoral research focused on application of computational techniques to better understand enzyme catalysis.


Created by Kalju Kahn & Morgan Gainer


Spring Quarter 2018
4 quarter units / 2.67 semester units

Structure, reactivity and synthesis of organic molecules including nomenclature, reaction mechanisms, and stereochemistry. Topics include organometallics, polymers, carbohydrates, amino acids, proteins, nucleic acids, coenzymes and their mechanisms.

The course utilizes standard technologies present in most modern operating systems and browsers. For the best on-line experience, you want: 

• A modern desktop or high-end laptop computer running a recent version of Windows, MacOS, or Linux. Computers in campus computer labs are well suited for this class. Many course components can be also accessed from tablet computers. 

• A display of least 1280×1024 (SXGA) to avoid horizontal scrolling. I strongly recommend a display at least 1920 pixels wide (FHD) to allows simultaneous views of the discussion window and the course website. Dual-monitor setup is ideal for students participating in the interactive track. Please note that your experience on many smaller netbooks will be sub-optimal. 

• Working speakers, a microphone, and a high-definition (at least 1280×720) webcam. An HD camcorder, connected via the appropriate port, may also work as a webcam. Unless you are taking all the exams at UCSB campus, you also need a cell phone or a tablet with a capability to record video at 720p (HD). 

• GPU-accelerated VP9 and Flash video decoding. For smooth video playback, I recommend that your video card is NVIDIA GeForce 700-series “Maxwell” or newer, or AMD Radeon RX 400-series “Polaris” or newer, or Intel HD 5X0 “Skylake” or higher. 

• A modern up-to-date Firefox, Chrome, Opera, or Samsung browser (for Safari and IE11, you need to install the WebM codec). Depending on your system, you may need to ensure that a recent version of Adobe Flash is installed and enabled. 

• Reliable high-bandwidth internet connection. Computers with wired connection to the campus network, a residential fiber optic network, or to a cable internet modem will be ideal. If you rely on Wi-Fi at home, please consider a dual-band router to relieve bandwidth congestion. While many course activities can be accessed via LTE mobile connections, mobile connections are not well-suited for watching high-resolution course videos and participating in course discussions.

Relevant website.

Exam Info

• Two 50-minute mid-terms will be given to all students. Both mid-term exams are open-book tests that you take at a common time online. The exams will be proctored (either physically by course TAs or remotely via your webcam) to ensure that you answer your questions without help from other people. Bring your photo-ID to the exam. If you take the remotely proctored exam, you will need a working microphone, a working webcam, a well-charged cell-phone or a tablet, and a stable internet connection. The two mid-terms mainly test your knowledge of topics covered prior to exam. If you are following a non-interactive track, you will also take a comprehensive 50-minute third exam that is similarly proctored. • There is a large 3-hour written final exam at the end of the course. The closed-book final exam will cover all the topics that were taught in this course and also test your ability to understand the material. Exam questions will be largely based on the material covered in the recorded lectures, on-line lessons, quizzes, and discussions. You can take the final on campus or at a remote proctoring center.

Important dates: 

Registration opens: Nov 23, 2018
Registration ends: Jan 6, 2019

First day of instruction: Jan 7, 2019
Last day of instruction: Mar 22, 2019


Please click here to download a syllabus for this course.

Course meeting requirements: 
This course has a synchronous on-line discussion component. There are also regular graded on-line assignments; it is not a "go at my own pace" course.
Chemistry 109B or 109BH with a minimum grade of C-.

Kalju Kahn