BS in Chemistry

Chemistry involves the understanding of the structure and reactivity of matter from atomic- and molecular-level perspective.  Degrees in Chemistry involve training in analytical, inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry. Elective courses are also available allowing students to pursue interests in materials, biological, and other advanced areas of chemistry.

The Bachelor of Science degree is designed for students interested in an in-depth preparation, including advanced lab work.  This degree is an excellent preparation for students interested in pursuing Chemistry or Biochemistry as a career.  It also serves as excellent preparation for students applying to professional programs in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and other health allied fields.


See Admissions for information about entrance pathways and application instructions.

Degree Requirements

BS Chemistry Checklist (PDF)

*note clicking on a subject (EX. CHEM) will take you to the course catalog for that subject, hovering on a course number will tell you the title and clicking on a course number will take you to the MyPlan course description of the course, clicking on "choose one" will take you to the information about course sequences.

Mathematics (choose one sequence)

Additional Math - one approved 200 level or higher. Recommended: MATH 208 (3) or AMATH (352)

Students who have taken the Math Honors 134, 135, 136 sequence are exempt from this additional math requirement.

Physics (choose one sequence)

The calculus-based series is recommended. NOTE: One credit lab is included with each course in the calculus-based physics series.

One credit of laboratory:

General Chemistry (choose one sequence)

Inorganic Chemistry (choose one)

  • CHEM 312 Lecture (3) - for students who took 142-152-162
  • CHEM 416 Transition Metals Lecture (3) - for students who took 145-155-165

Organic Chemistry (choose one sequence)

Organic laboratory begins with the second lecture course.

Physical Chemistry

Chemistry Labs*

Science Electives* (11 credits)

  • 400 level CHEM/BIOC lecture or lab courses
  • Students who have a chemistry grade point average of 3.3 can apply up to six credits of CHEM CHEM 399 or 499 research
  • MATH 207 or AMATH 351 or STAT 311 also count as a science elective

*Note courses used to satisfy the lab requirement do not overlap with each other or with the Science Electives requirement (Ex. 461 cannot count towards the 2 out of 3 requirement and the additional lab requirement, etc.) 

This page outlines the degree requirements for the non-ACS certified chemistry degree. An ACS-Certified degree is described on a separate page. See BS in Chemistry - ACS Certified.

Sample Schedule

Year Autumn Courses Winter Courses Spring Courses
1st Year Chem 142 (5)
Math 124 (5)
English Composition (5)
Chem 152 (5)
Math 125 (5)
A&H "W" (5)*
Chem 162 (5)
Math 126 (5)
SSc (5)*
2nd Year Chem 237 (4)
Math 208 (3)
Phys 121 (5)
SSc (5)*
Chem 238 (4)
Chem 241 (3)
Phys 122 (5)
A&H (5)*
Chem 239 (4)
Chem 242 (3)
Phys 123 (5)
SSc (5)*
3rd Year Chem 455 (3)
Chem 321 (5)
Foreign Language 101 (5)
Chem 399/499 (3)**
Chem 456 (3)
Chem 312 (3)
Foreign Language 102 (5)
Chem 399/499 (3)**
Chem 457 (3)
Chem 317/461 (3)
Foreign Language 103 (5)
Chem 399/499 (3)**
4th Year Science Elective (3)
Science Elective (2)
A&H "W" (5)
Chem 399/499 (3)**
Science Elective (3)
Chem Lab (2-3)
SSc (5)*
Chem 399/499 (3)**
Science Elective (3)
Elective (5)
A&H (5)*
Chem 399/499 (3)**

* Arts and Humanities (A&H), Social Science (SSc). Students are expected to understand and complete all general education requirements as detailed in the General Catalog.

** All interested students are strongly encouraged to pursue undergraduate research. Student can count research credits as general elective credits needed for the degree. Chem 299W and 49W9 can also meet the Writing "W" requirements.

Undergraduate advisers can help set up individual schedules according to students’ needs and constraints.

Major Credit and Grade Point Checklist

  • Chemistry BS degree, non-ACS certified, requires a minimum of 180 credits. Depending on the courses chosen, the minimum total may increase.
  • A minimum grade of 2.0 is necessary for each required chemistry course.
  • An overall cumulative grade point average of 2.5 is required.
  • A “science” GPA of 2.5 is required. The “science" GPA is calculated from CHEM, MATH, PHYS and/or BIOC courses used to satisfy the non-ACS certified degree requirements.
    • Note: The Model Schedule plans for up to 17 credits per quarter, which is above the standard 15.
  • Each course can only be used to fulfill one requirement.

    Continuation Policy

    Beginning Spring quarter 2010, students enrolled in degree programs in biochemistry and chemistry must maintain both a cumulative GPA and individual-course grades consistent with requirements for their degree. Students pursuing B.S. degrees must maintain a minimum cumulative major GPA of 2.50 and minimum 2.0 for individual courses required for the major. Students pursuing a B.A. degree must maintain a minimum cumulative major GPA of 2.00 and minimum 1.7 for individual courses required for the major. Failure to maintain these GPA and grade standards results in the student being placed on departmental academic probation for one quarter, and dropped from the major if marked improvement in academic performance is not achieved. Students who experience extraordinary circumstances may petition for one or more additional probationary quarters.