Chemistry, BA

The different disciplines of modern physical and biological sciences have much to offer each other through advances in technology. Aside from basic research, society continually generates fundamental scientific and technological challenges such as the need for new sources of energy, new synthetic and biotechnologies; new materials exhibiting unusual catalytic, metallic, or electrolytic properties; and developments in laser, computer, and communications technology. We consider these within the province of a unified field of molecular sciences, in which chemistry plays the central role.

Chemistry is concerned with the study of matter and the changes matter can undergo. The chemistry program provides a basic foundation for career opportunities in chemical research and teaching, in scientific communication and information transfer, and in the health professions. Students who want to prepare for advanced study in chemistry or allied fields where research experience is advantageous should complete the chemistry honors program.

The minimum total course units for graduation in this major is 36. Double majors may entail more course units.

Those considering the Chemistry major should consult with the undergraduate chairman as soon as possible, preferably in the freshman year, especially if you have AP credit in Science and Mathematics from high school.

For information about the General Education requirements, please visit the College of Arts & Sciences Curriculum page.

College General Education Requirements and Free Electives
Foundational Approaches + Sectors1 + Free Electives19
Major Requirements
Introductory Sequences 2
General Chemistry:
CHEM 101General Chemistry I1
or CHEM 115 Honors Chemistry I: Theoretical Perspectives
CHEM 102General Chemistry II1
or CHEM 116 Honors Chemistry II
General Chemistry Laboratories:
CHEM 053
CHEM 054
General Chemistry Laboratory I
and General Chemistry Laboratory II
Organic Chemistry and Laboratories:
CHEM 241Principles of Organic Chemistry1
CHEM 242Principles of Organic Chemistry II1
or CHEM 243 Organic Chemistry II: Principles of Organic Chemistry with applications in Chemical Biology
CHEM 245Experimental Organic Chemistry1
MATH 104Calculus, Part I1
MATH 114Calculus, Part II1
or MATH 116 Honors Calculus
PHYS 150Principles of Physics I: Mechanics and Wave Motion1.5
PHYS 151Principles of Physics II: Electromagnetism and Radiation1.5
Additional Chemistry Requirements
Physical Chemistry and Laboratories:
CHEM 221Physical Chemistry I 31
CHEM 222Physical Chemistry II 41
CHEM 223Experimental Physical Chemistry I 41
Biological Chemistry:
CHEM 251Principles of Biological Chemistry 51
Inorganic Chemistry:
CHEM 261Inorganic Chemistry I 31
One Advanced Laboratory:
CHEM 246Advanced Synthesis and Spectroscopy Laboratory 61
Total Course Units36

You may count no more than one course toward both a Major and a Sector requirement. For Exceptions, check the Policy Statement.


Majors should complete by the end of the sophomore year.


Offered Fall only.


Offered Spring only.


Must be taken after CHEM 241 Principles of Organic Chemistry.


offered Fall only and must be taken concurrently with or after CHEM 261 Inorganic Chemistry I.


Applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 in all Math and Science courses.

Advanced (400 level or above)1
CHEM 399Independent Research1
CHEM 399Independent Research1

The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2017 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.