Weizman, Haim
Chemical education, Bioorganic chemistry

Contact Information
Teaching Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Office: Urey Hall 2232
Phone: 858-534-2963
Email: hweizman@ucsd.edu
Group: View group members
Research Interests
Chemical education

Our research and development in chemical education is geared towards improving organic chemistry instruction at a college level. Many undergraduate students face major difficulties learning organic chemistry; in fact, these courses are among the classes (together with calculus and physics) that were recognized as the main reason contributing to undergraduates leaving the natural sciences. Therefore, we are aiming to understand the cognitive processes associated with comprehending organic chemistry. In addition, we are currently developing various internet-based interactive learning tools as teaching aids for instructors and students.

Another goal of our program is to develop comprehensive labs that can better train chemistry majors. The philosophy behind these labs is that modern organic chemistry demands efficient synthesis to minimize costs and protect the environment (Green Chemistry). Efficient synthesis originates from understanding the fundamental physical-organic principals of reactions. Besides chemistry, the labs are designed to expose students to other important sides of working in a dynamic research environment.

Bioorganic chemistry

Our research in bioorganic chemistry is focused on using organic chemistry as a tool for exploring biological systems. Working on cutting-edge research projects in bioorganic chemistry enables us to incorporate these novel and current examples into our chemical education programs.

At this time, our focus is on three major projects: design and synthesis of fluorescent nucleotide analogs, synthesis of RNA binders as potential therapeutics, and biomimetic photoreactive siderophores.
Primary Research Area
Chemical Education
Interdisciplinary interests

Outreach Activities
Developing educational chemistry programs (BioBridge) to enhance science education at schools with high percentage of students from underrepresented groups.
Image Gallery

Using tablet PC technology to enhance chemistry teaching

Fluorescent nucleoside analog

Producing instructional videos

Selected Publications