Leonard C. Nelson College of Engineering & Sciences


Hasan El-Rifai
Chair and Associate Professor
Fax: 304.442.1046

Zeljko “Z” Torbica
Dean and Professor
Fax: 304.442.1006

Paul O. Steranka, Jr.
Associate Dean and Professor
Fax: 304.442.1006


Chemistry is the study of the composition, structure and properties of matter. Chemists work in the growing fields of biotechnology, environmental science, catalysis, materials science, information and computer technologies, and many others. The study of chemistry is excellent preparation for medical, pharmacy, dental, and veterinary schools. Chemistry is also an excellent field of study to prepare for many other professional careers like patent law, chemical sales, and technical writing.

A total of 128 hours minimum is required for the Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. The following courses are required by the Chemistry Department: CHEM-115, 116, and 215 or CHEM-117 and 118; CHEM-233, 234, 235, 236, 310, 313, 422, 423, 346, 347, 348, 349, 494; 4 hours of CHEM-497 and/or 490; MATH-155, 156, 251, 261; PHYS-111, 112; ENGL-305; 9 hours of 400-level chemistry electives; and 24 hours of restricted electives. The 24 hours of restricted electives are chosen from a list approved by the Chemistry Department. Courses required by the Chemistry Department account for 103 to 104 of the hours required for the Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. The core curriculum requirements account for 25 hours. Students must pass an assessment exam in inorganic chemistry, chemical analysis and instrumental methods of chemical analysis, organic and bioorganic chemistry, and calculusbased physical chemistry during their seventh and/or eighth semester.

In addition to the general education learning outcomes listed elsewhere in the catalog, the Chemistry Department’s Bachelor of Science program is designed to meet broad educational objectives and learning outcomes, which prepare:

  1. Students to apply fundamental chemical concepts and relationships in the solution of diverse scientific problems.
  2. Students with knowledge and application of chemical analytical instrumentation, experimental design, and scientific data collection and interpretation.
  3. Students with diverse laboratory skills and techniques.
  4. Students with knowledge and application of good laboratory safety practices and environmental responsibility.
  5. Students with the ability to effectively communicate technical information through writing and speaking.
  6. Students for professional employment in the various scientific fields or to continue with advanced study, which may include graduate work in business, the sciences, health professions or law.