DNA and Atoms: The Secret of Life

Learn about DNA structure, how atoms are bonded to make DNA molecules and the periodic table, through Nobel lectures and key scientific papers.

DNA and Atoms: The Secret of Life
This course is archived
Estimated 4 weeks
4–5 hours per week
Self-paced
Progress at your own speed

About this course

Skip About this course

In this chemistry course, you will learn about “Life in the Universe." We will explore DNA as genetic material and atoms as the building blocks of life. We will discuss the discovery and key features of the double helical structure of DNA and the chemical principles behind the sugar-phosphate backbone and hydrogen bonding in the base pairs will be emphasized. We will also discuss identification DNA as genetic material.

At the end of the course, you will learn how and why atoms are bonded to make molecules such as DNA and the discovery of argon will be used to explain the valency and reactivity of different elements based on the periodic table.

To help learners better understand the material, we will be referencing Nobel lectures and scientific papers such as:

  • Watson and Crick’s 1953 paper in Nature
  • Rayleigh’s 1904 Nobel Lecture on the discovery of argon
  • The 1944 paper in J. Experimental Medicine by Avery, MacLeod, and McCarty
  • Perrin’s 1928 Nobel Lecture

At a glance

  • Institution: SNUx
  • Subject: Physics
  • Level: Introductory
  • Prerequisites:

    None

  • Language: English

What you'll learn

Skip What you'll learn
  • The key secret of life in the universe
  • DNA Structure
  • How atoms combine to make molecules
  • How great scientific discoveries are made

Week 1: Structure of DNA
Week 2: Genetic Material
Week 3: Atomic Theory
Week 4: Periodic Table

About the instructors