Chemistry as a Major

The Chemistry Major
The Rutgers Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology offers a major in chemistry in both the School of Arts and Science (SAS) and the School of Environmental and Biological Science (SEBS). This comprehensive program consists of a core set of classes, as well as six different options in order to allow students to better suit their interests. The core set contains both standard lecture and laboratory courses in areas including organic chemistry, physical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, and analytical chemistry. In addition, other courses outside of the chemistry field are required regardless of the option chosen. Declaration of the chemistry major is done after successful completion (a grade of “C” or better) of both semesters of General Chemistry. For additional information about this department, you may visit the main website.

Directory
Core Chemistry Classes
Required Non-Chemistry Courses
Suggested Sequence of Courses
Chemistry Major Options
          • Core Option
          • General ACS Option
          • Chemical Biology Option
          • Environmental Option
          • Business/Law Options
          • Chemical Physics Option

Core Chemistry Courses
The following courses are required of a chemistry major:

  • Two semesters of General Chemistry
  • One semester General Chemistry Lab
  • Two semesters of Organic Chemistry
  • Two semesters of Organic Chemistry Lab
  • Two semesters of Physical Chemistry
  • One semester of Physical Chemistry Lab
  • Two semesters of Analytical and Instrumental Chemistry
  • One semester of Inorganic Chemistry
  • Two semesters of a Chemistry Seminar

For more details, including prerequisites, registration numbers, and detailed course descriptions, please click here.

back to top

Required Non-Chemistry Courses
In order to ensure a broader background and prepare students for some of the chemistry classes, the following courses in the Physics Department and the Mathematics Department are required.

  • General Physics I with laboratory (01:750:203 AND 01:750:205 OR 01:750:201)
  • General Physics II with laboratory (01:750:204 AND 01:750:206 OR 01:750:202)
  • Calculus I for the Mathematical and Physical Sciences (01:640:151)
  • Calculus II for the Mathematical and Physical Sciences (01:640:152)
  • Multivariable Calculus (01:640:251)
  • Introduction to Linear Algebra (01:640:250)

For more details about these courses, visit the Physics and the Mathematics Department websites.

back to top

Core Course Sequence
The following table gives a suggested sequence for all of the core courses. Some classes may be swapped, but be sure to check if the course is offered that semester and that you will have the necessary prerequisites.

Suggested Course Sequence

Freshman – Fall

Freshman – Spring

Gen Chem I (4)
01:160:161/163

Gen Chem II (4)
01:160:161/164

Intro to Experimentation (1)
01:160:171

Intro to Experimentation alternative (1)
01:160:171

Calc I (4)
01:640:151

Calc II (4)
01:640:152

Sophomore – Fall

Sophomore – Spring

Organic Chem I (4)
01:160:307/315

Organic Chem II (4)
01:160:308/316

Analytical Chemistry (3)
01:160:251

Organic Chem Lab I (2.5)
01:160:309

Gen Physics I (3)
01:750:203

Gen Physics II (3)
01:750:204

Gen Physics I Lab (1)
01:750:205

Gen Physics Lab II (1)
01:750:206

Multivariable Calc (4)
01:640:251

Intro to Linear Algebra (3)
01:640:250

Junior – Fall

Junior – Spring

Physical Chem I (4)
01:160:327

Physical Chem II (4)
01:160:328

Instrumental Analysis (3)
01:160:348

Experimental Physical Chem (2.5)
01:160:329

Organic Chem Lab II (2.5)
01:160:310

Inorganic Chemistry (3)
01:160:371

Chemical Bonding (1.5)
01:160:361

Senior – Fall

Senior – Spring

Seminar (1)
01:160:491

Seminar (1)
01:160:492

back to top

Chemistry Major Options
There are six options that a chemistry major may choose. Five options require course work in addition to the core and required non-major courses.

          A. Core Option

1. All core courses shown above, plus required math and physics

2. Does not lead to certification by American Chemical Society (ACS)

          B. General ACS Option

1. All core courses shown above, plus required math and physics

2. 4 credits of senior-level research

3. ONE of the following upper-level biochemistry course

a. Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (01:694:407)

b. General Biochemistry 11:115:403)

4. A 400-level chemistry course not part of the core (i.e. Advanced Organic Chemistry, Organic Synthesis, Advanced Organometallic Chemistry, Advanced Inorganic Chemistry, Thermodynamics, etc; check the course catalog each semester for more)

5. Leads to certification by ACS

          C. Chemical Biology Option

1. All core courses shown above, plus required math and physics

a. Physical Chemistry of Biological Systems I and II (01:160:341-342) is substituted for the core physical chemistry requirement

2. 4 credits of senior-level research

3. ONE of the following upper-level biochemistry course

a. Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (01:694:407)

b. General Biochemistry 11:115:403)

c. Biophysical Chemistry I (01:160:437)

4. A second upper-level biochemistry-related course:

a. Physical Chemistry of Biological Systems I or II (01:160:437-438)*

b. Molecular Biology and Biochemistry II (01:694:408)

c. General Biochemistry II (11:115:404)

d. Advanced Medicinal Chemistry (30:715:450)

e. Drugs: Structure and Function (30:715:451)

Note that availability of these classes changes each semester. Please plan accordingly.Substitutions may be made only by permission of the chemistry adviser.

5. Leads to certification by ACS

          D. Environmental Option

1. All core courses shown above, plus required math and physics

2. 4 credits of senior-level research

3. Two of the following courses:

a. Theory and Interpretation of Organic Spectra (01:160:415)

b. Analytical Spectroscopy (01:160:451)

c. Introduction to Geochemistry (01:460:401)

d. Environmental Geochemistry (01:460:417)

e. Air Sampling and Analysis (11:375: 422)

f. Water Chemistry (11:375:444)

g. Chemical Oceanography (11:628:472)

Note that availability of these classes changes each semester. Please plan accordingly.

4. If a biochemistry course (Molecular Biology and Biochemistry I 01:694:407 OR General Biochemistry I 11:115:403) is taken, leads to ACS certification

          E. Business/Law Option

1. Substitute Multivariable Calculus (01:640:251) and Organic Chemistry Lab II (01:160:310) for three business- or law-related courses, one of which must be from the following three courses:

a. Introduction to Financial Accounting (33:010:272)

b. Scientific and Technical Writing (01:355:302)

c. Organizational and Personnel Psychology (01:830:373)

The remaining two courses must be chosen after consultation with the Undergraduate Executive Officer. Courses should be in areas concerning accounting, communication, finance, economics, marketing, or management. Check course catalog for availability of desired courses.

2. Does not lead to certification by the ACS.

          F. Chemical Physics Option

1. Substitute General Physics (01:750:203-204) for ONE set of the following:

a. Analytical Physics (01:750:123-124 AND 01:750:227-228)

b. Honors Physics (01:750:271, 272, AND 273)

2. Substitute General Physics Laboratory (01:750:205-206) for ONE set of the following:

a. Analytical Physics Laboratory (01:750:229-230)

b. Classical Physics Laboratory (01:750:275-276)

3. Substitute Organic Chemistry Lab II (01:160:310) and Instrumental Analysis (01:160:348) for the ALL three following classes:

a. Elementary Differential Equations (01:640:252)

b. Mechanics (01:750:381)

c. Electromagnetism (01:750:385)

4. Two of the following advanced courses:

a. Atomic and Molecular Structure (01:160:421)

b. Thermodynamics I (01:160:425)

c. Kinetics (01:160:434)

d. Introductory Solid State Physics (01:750:406)

e. Intermediate Quantum Mechanics (01:750:417)

5. Two semesters of senior-level research for 3 or more credits may substitute ONE advanced course from Requirement 4 above.

6. Does not lead to certification by the ACS.

Notes:
*A recommended track for the Chemical Biology option is for students to take the course sequence 01:160:341-342 to satisfy their core physical chemistry requirement and the 2-course sequence 01:160:437-438 to satisfy their biochemistry and elective requirements.
back to top