The Chemistry Department offers diverse choices for study:
- Bachelor of Arts
- Bachelor of Science
- Master of Arts
- Master of Science
- Bachelor of Science/Master of Science Program
- Chemistry Minors
- Teacher Certification
Students interested in biochemistry should consider either the bachelor of science chemistry curriculum with biochemistry or biology electives or the bachelor of science program in cell biology/biochemistry offered jointly by the chemistry and biology departments.
The department emphasizes the importance of the research experience in a modern chemical education. The opportunity to engage in an original experimental investigation in collaboration with a faculty member is an important and distinctive aspect of this program.
Bachelor of Science graduates will not automatically achieve the American Chemical Society's certification. To fulfill these requirements, B.S. chemistry students should take the equivalent of at least two additional laboratory or research courses, and biochemistry CHEM 351.
A bachelor of arts major in chemistry consists of eight courses in chemistry numbered 211 or above, five of which are required: Organic Chemistry I (CHEM 211), Organic Chemistry II (212), Inorganic Chemistry (221), Analytical Chemistry (231), and Biophysical Chemstry (340) or Physical Chemistry (341). In addition, one semester each of calculus (MATH 201) and modern physics (PHYS 211) are required. Calculus II (MATH 202) and the second semester of Classical and Modern Physics (PHYS 212) are strongly recommended.
A bachelor of science major in chemistry consists of 10 courses in chemistry, eight of which are required: Organic Chemistry I (CHEM 211), Organic Chemistry II (212), Inorganic Chemistry (221), Analytical Chemistry (231), Physical Chemistry (341), Inorganic II (322), Analytical Chemistry II (332), and Physical Chemistry II (342). Also required are three courses in mathematics, Calculus I, II, and III, (MATH 201, 202, and 211), three courses in physics, Classical and Modern Physics I and II, and Applied Electronics (PHYS 211, 212, and 235), and one science elective.
The M.A. degree program in the Chemistry department is for high school teachers of chemistry and enriches their training through research and courses. It is designed to allow high school teachers to experience chemistry as it is actually practiced. A goal of the program is to help teachers see themselves as chemists as well as teachers.
The Master of Science program in Chemistry at Bucknell University is designed to provide students with a basic foundation in their field through both research and courses and to prepare them, should they desire, to continue their graduate education in a specialized area of chemistry at any other institution. In some instances, students unsure of their background training or of their desire to pursue graduate work leading to the doctorate at a large university have elected to study for the MS degree at Bucknell. Many graduates of this program have continued their studies and earned the doctorate from leading universities throughout the country. In other cases, students have obtained attractive employment in industry, government and teaching.
A combined B.S./M.S. degree program is available for students who know at an early stage that they want a career in chemical research. Selected during their sophomore year, students spend three 10-week summer sessions gathering the experimental results which form the basis for their master's thesis. Their courses satisfy the requirements for the B.S. degree at the end of their senior year and their M.S. degree requirements by the end of that summer. In this way, students are able to accelerate their chemistry education while still obtaining a liberal foundation in the humanities and social sciences.
Two minors are available in the department of chemistry:
- The minor in chemistry requires six chemistry courses. One of the courses may be CHEM 201 or 202. The other five must be at the 200 level or above and may include a maximum of one semester of Undergraduate Research (CHEM 375, 376) or a Research Capstone (CHEM 475, 476).
- The chemistry (biochemistry) minor requires six chemistry courses at the 200 level or above, including Biochemistry I and II (CHEM 351, 352) and may include a maximum of one semester of CHEM 375, CHEM 376, CHEM 475, or CHEM 476.
Students interested in coordinating graduate with undergraduate work should consult the department chair before the end of the sophomore year. An honors program is available.
Students seeking certification to teach at the secondary level are required to take one course in English Literature in addition to the university writing requirement (AP credit does not count) and two courses in mathematics (AP credit does count). A 3.0 gpa is required for admission to the teacher certification program (PreCIP) and for certification. Additional requirements for students seeking to teach Chemistry are provided at the Education Department web site.)