Chemistry

Juliane Fry

Atmospheric chemistry, urban air pollution, formation and composition of atmospheric aerosol, atmospheric reaction mechanisms and kinetics, chemistry-climate interactions.

Daniel P. Gerrity

Experimental physical chemistry, application of laser spectroscopy to the study of chemical dynamics and molecular electronic structure.

Margret J. Geselbracht

Inorganic chemistry, synthesis and characterization of solid state inorganic materials with applications for energy storage, structure-property relationships in mixed metal oxides, exploratory molten salt synthesis leading to new crystalline structures.

Arthur Glasfeld

Structural biochemistry and bioinorganic chemistry.

Ronald W. McClard

Biochemistry, bioorganophosphorus chemistry, design and synthesis of enzyme modifiers and prototypes of pharmaceutical agents, bioorganic mechanisms, metabolism, applications of NMR spectroscopy to biochemistry.

Patrick G. McDougal

Organic synthesis, bioorganic chemistry.

Alan J. Shusterman

Green chemistry, molecular modeling.

Courses in chemistry provide a comprehensive description of the interaction of matter and energy at the atomic level. Examples of chemical phenomena drawn from current research, together with modern theoretical principles, are used to examine a diverse set of subjects, including atomic and molecular structure, the energetics of physical and chemical processes, the dynamics and mechanisms of chemical reactions, the chemical principles underlying biological processes, and the synthesis of new organic, inorganic, and biochemical compounds and materials.

Coursework is integrated with appropriate laboratory work and is designed to teach the skills used by practicing chemical scientists. A large assortment of modern research-quality instruments is available for undergraduate use, including GC-MS, FT-IR, and FT-NMR spectrometers; an X-ray diffractometer; a 250-kilowatt research reactor (see “Campus Facilities”); and a computational chemistry laboratory.

Research investigations are used to refine and integrate skills and to introduce students to the daily activities of practicing scientists. The senior thesis provides an opportunity to focus on a single research topic for an extended period of time and is typically conducted as a collaboration between the student and one or more faculty members. Independent study, including research, is encouraged as a method for tailoring studies to the needs of the individual student. Several students are offered employment each summer as research assistants and are able to conduct original research. Much of this research is supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the American Chemical Society, and other sources.

Requirements for the Major


  1. Chemistry 101 and 102, 201 and 202, 212, 311, 316, 332, 333, 470.
  2. Physics 100.
  3. Mathematics 111, 112, 211. Physics 200 (lecture and lab in the fall; lecture in the spring) may be substituted for Mathematics 211.

If a student wishes to obtain certification of her or his program by the American Chemical Society, Chemistry 334 or 348 and one semester of biochemistry (either Chemistry 391 or 392) must be included. This certification is not required for graduation, but may prove useful for students seeking employment as chemists following graduation. Although there is no formal language requirement, the ability to read technical articles in a foreign language, especially German, is useful.

Students with special interests in physical and theoretical chemistry should take Mathematics 212, Physics 200, and Chemistry 324, and should consult with an adviser concerning more advanced courses in mathematics and physics. Students contemplating graduate work in biochemistry or related fields should take Chemistry 391, 392, and 394, and should consult with an adviser concerning additional courses in biology. Students should also examine the detailed descriptions of the interdisciplinary programs in chemistry and physics, and biochemistry and molecular biology, which are listed in another section of the catalog. Interdisciplinary programs linking chemistry to mathematics or other disciplines can also be arranged.

Chemistry Course Descriptions



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