• Foundational chemical principles in the major chemical disciplines: organic, inorganic, analytical, and physical chemistry and biochemistry
  • An appreciation of key concepts from specialized fields in chemistry, such as materials science, nanotechnology, environmental chemistry, computational chemistry, and climate science
  • How to connect chemistry to current, real-world problems in society and the environment
  • Laboratory methods to investigate chemical phenomena and synthesize compounds
  • How to use state-of-the-art analytical instruments for qualitative and quantitative analyses
  • How to use computers for data collection, analysis, modeling, and visualization of chemicals and chemical phenomena
  • Scientific communication and literacy, including scientific writing and presentation of research results and how to search for and read chemical literature



How does the microscopic behavior of atoms and molecules affect the macroscopic properties of materials? How does light interact with matter, and how can we use that interaction to probe the structure of molecules? What types of molecules are involved with global warming and how can we find methods to minimize their generation or remove them from the atmosphere?

The chemistry department offers foundational courses in the five core chemical subdisciplines: organic, physical, analytical, inorganic, and biochemistry. Additional elective courses explore a variety of topics, including atmospheric chemistry, computational chemistry, materials chemistry, food chemistry, environmental chemistry, and organic synthesis. Classes are small, with fewer than 40 students in lower-level chemistry lecture sections and capped at 18 for laboratory sections.


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Isabella Graves ’16

"My chemistry background equipped me with scientific knowledge and technical skills that I would continue to use throughout graduate school and into my career."