UC Davis Study Abroad, Pharmaceutical Chemistry in Taipei Program, Header Image

Quarter Abroad Taiwan - Courses

Pharmaceutical Chemistry in Taiwan

On this Quarter Abroad program, you can:

  • Earn 13-18 spring quarter units
  • Enroll in UC Davis courses to fulfill degree, major, minor, or GE requirements
  • Experience academic coursework enriched by both the program’s location(s) and activities

Note to Non-UC Davis Students:

Students from other UC campuses should consult with their home campus to determine whether courses may be used to fulfill their specific academic requirements.

Host Institution 

Academia Sinica is a modern research institution with a worldwide reputation and a proud tradition.  Academia Sinica aims to: engage the entire academic and research community in Taiwan in a modern and forward-looking collective academic vision; to cultivate an intellectual environment that is conducive to the nurturing of young scholars and the recognition of outstanding scholarship in Taiwan; and to promote international cooperation and scholarly exchanges that will accelerate the overall development of academic research at Academia Sinica.

Earn GE credit! Some courses on this program offer GE credit. Expand the sections below to view course descriptions and type of credit offered.

Courses (13-18 units) Subject to change for Spring Quarter 2023

You will enroll in the course set below. Auditing is not an option. UC Davis programs are academic programs so participants should expect a substantial amount of course work.

  • Chemistry (CHE) 130A. Pharmaceutical Chemistry Part A (3 units)*
  • This course will provide an introduction to the chemical principles behind the design and production of pharmaceutical agents. Focus will be on explaining and predicting how small organic molecules bind to biological receptors, inhibit enzymes and get metabolized. This course will draw on and expand upon material covered in introductory organic chemistry such as proposing reasonable arrow-pushing mechanisms for organic reactions and predicting the reactivity of organic molecules with particular reagents.
  • Chemistry (CHE) 130B. Pharmaceutical Chemistry Part B (3 units)*
  • This course will provide hands-on experience with modern computational methods used in the drug design process. A variety of different computational methods—pharmacophore modeling, automated molecular docking, etc.—will be described and applied using real-life drugs and related molecules.
  • Chemistry (CHE) 130C. Case Studies in Pharmaceutical Chemistry (1 unit, Pass/No Pass)*
  • Seminar. Exploration of medicinal and pharmaceutical chemistry topics through seminars presented by professional chemists (and allied professionals). Designed to highlight career opportunities for students with a degree in pharmaceutical chemistry
  • Chemistry (CHE) 150. Natural Products Chemistry (3 units)*
  • Chemistry of terpenes, steroids, acetogenins, and alkaloids: isolation, structure determination, biosynthesis, chemical transformations, and total synthesis. GE credit: SE.

  • Chemistry (CHE) 198. Chemistry & Culture (3 units, Pass/No Pass)
  • In this course, students will be exposed to chemical and biochemical research in Taiwan and associated aspects of local culture through attending scientific seminars and field trips in Taipei. To earn a passing grade, students will be expected to attend a certain number of events and write brief descriptions of what they learned from them. This course includes participation on excursions and tours and attendance to guest lectures. Students are often asked to write reflective pieces. Assignment topics vary by program.

  • Chemistry (CHE) 199. Special Study/Research Internship (1-5 units, Pass/No Pass, optional)
  • Research Internships are completed by almost all of the students and is a highlight of the program. In order to maximize student success, research projects will be designed and planned in joint collaboration between AST and UC Davis faculty prior to departure. During winter quarter, UC Davis students interested in participating in the optional research internships in Taiwan will enroll in a winter quarter CHE 198 class that meets weekly to discuss the following topics: Culture of Taiwan, Finding a research director, Developing a research project, Writing a research plan and Safety Training. Class will meet once a week during winter quarter. If you are a non-UCD student or you have another class at this time, please contact program instructor Jacquelyn Gervay-Hague. 

Details about the CHE 199 course:

Each student researcher will have dual faculty mentors, one from AST and one from UC Davis.

Each participant will also be assigned to a researcher from AST to help oversee their research project and provide on-going on-site support and direction.

Faculty mentors will ideally be approving the research plan on or before March 1.

Participating students will apply to receive Transcript Notation (TN) for both winter and spring research activities, acknowledging successful research including project planning in addition to implementation.


Along with the general eligibility requirements, Study Abroad will be enforcing the completion of the following prerequisites:

CHE 118C or 128C (or equivalent for non-UC students)

  • Prerequisite Equivalents for Students from Other UC's
  • UC Berkeley: CHEM 112B (Organic Chemistry)
    UC Irvine: Chemistry 51C and 51LC (Organic Chemistry and Lab)
    UCLA: Chemistry 30C and 30CL (Organic Chemistry III and Lab)
    UC Merced: Chemistry 100 and 100L (Organic Synthesis and Mechanism & Organic Chemistry Lab)
    UC Riverside: CHEM 112C (Organic Chemistry)
    UC Santa Barbara: CHEM 109C and 6L (Organic Chemistry and Organic Chemistry Labs)
    UC Santa Cruz: CHEM 110L (Intermediate Organic Chemistry Lab)
    UC San Diego: Chemistry 140C and 143C (Organic Chemistry III and Organic Chemistry Lab)

Why should chemistry students study abroad?  

According to the American Chemical Society:

  • Studying abroad can make you more attractive to graduate schools, particularly if you conduct research or learn another language while overseas.
  • Conducting research in a new environment will enhance your laboratory skills and allow you to learn the chemical sciences from an international perspective.
  • Science and technology are becoming increasingly global, and there is a growing demand for scientists and engineers who can work effectively in an international setting.