A major in Chemistry (.pdf) provides students with sound training for a professional career in chemistry and in related areas of science and the medical professions. The minimum major consists of ten courses in the department, as well as physics and mathematics courses.
In their junior year, all majors begin the independent study process with a one semester course that introduces them to chemical structure and bonding through the chemical literature. They learn how to locate it, using on-line data base searching, and how to read and write about it. In the senior year, students begin two semesters of Independent Study (I.S.). Students investigate an original research problem, present two research seminars on their progress, describe their work in a thesis, and give an oral defense of the thesis. During the year, the initial advisee-adviser relationship usually becomes one of scientific colleagues interested in a common goal.
Chemical physics provides an interdisciplinary approach to the fields of chemistry and physics using mathematical techniques. The major allows students to explore the interface between chemistry and physics by studying structure, surfaces, bonding, atoms and molecules. By combining the methodologies and knowledge of physics and chemistry, many intriguing scientific questions can be addressed by a student with a strong predilection for mathematics and the physical sciences.
Students may not double major in Chemical Physics and in any of the participating departments of Chemistry, Physics, or Mathematics. No minor is offered in Chemical Physics. Any student who anticipates attending graduate school in chemistry of physics should also take additional courses in those disciplines.
Interested students should discuss their plans with the chairperson of the Department of Chemistry or Physics.