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College of Natural Sciences

BS in Chemistry

Overview

The "right size" department: The official vision statement of the department is "to inspire and educate students, today and for the future, in the concepts and skills of chemistry and biochemistry; to prepare them to think about, to work with, and to enjoy the concepts of chemistry and biochemistry."

To accomplish these goals requires faculty, staff, equipment, buildings, and the commitments of everyone involved. If a chemistry department is small, it's hard to afford the equipment, staff, and expertise that it takes to teach a modern, technical subject like chemistry. When departments get large, there is lots of equipment and expertise, but often the commitment to students and the personal attention that education requires is lost.The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry is just the "right size". We are big enough to have faculty expertise (and staff support) in all of the major branches of chemistry: organic, inorganic, analytical, physical, chemical education, material science and biochemistry. We are well equipped for all of the typical analyses that chemists are called upon to perform. And yet we are small enough to allow for the individual attention and hands-on experiences that are required to learn the concepts and practices of chemistry and biochemistry. Small classes, especially in the upper-division, and individual research projects are the norm for the department. Our faculty are chosen for their expertise and their commitment to students. And our students go on to compete and succeed in the finest graduate programs, professional schools, and the full array of industrial and academic settings.

Mission

The Mission of the BS in Chemistry program is to provide a solid foundation in chemical theory, laboratory manipulations, data analysis and communication of results. Students will gain hands-on experience with state-of-the-art scientific instrumentation and computational chemistry software. It will also provide students with hands-on experience on cutting-edge research projects in a wide range of areas and prepare students for scientific careers in the pharmaceutical industry, research positions at national labs or academic positions at community colleges or universities. Many of these career areas will require postgraduate training.

Goals & Objectives

  • Achieve proficiency in the understanding of chemical theory
  • Achieve proficiency in laboratory manipulations
  • Achieve proficiency in quantitative analysis of experimental data
  • Achieve proficiency in written and oral communication

Learning Outcomes

  1. Achieve proficiency in the understanding of chemical theory
    1. Students will have a deep understanding of the basic theories of matter and be able to explain more complex phenomena using that knowledge.
    2. Students will have a good understanding of the theories of inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, physical chemistry, analytical chemistry, and biochemistry.
    3. Students will be able to apply advanced mathematical operations to problem solving as it relates to chemical concepts.
  2. Achieve proficiency in laboratory manipulations
    1. Students will be able to perform independent analysis of chemical compounds and mixtures using modern instrumentation.
    2. Students will have a working knowledge of the capabilities of modern instrumentation and be able to design and modify experiments to use the instruments effectively.
    3. Students will understand the hazards of various classes of chemicals and be able to perform experiments in a way to minimize safety risks to themselves and the environment.
  3. Achieve proficiency in quantitative analysis of experimental data
    1. Students will be able to solve chemical problems by analyzing experimental results and interpreting them based on chemical theory.
    2. Students will be able to perform quantitative analyses with good accuracy and precision.
    3. Students will be able to categorize data statistically using computer technology.
  4. Achieve proficiency in written and oral communication
    1. Students will be able to retrieve information from the chemical literature and incorporate it into written reports and new experiments of their own design.
    2. Students will be able to communicate their knowledge of chemistry and their experimental results to other students and other chemists through well-written reports.
    3. Students will be able to communicate their knowledge of chemistry and their experimental results to other students and other chemists through clear and concise oral presentations.