A classic definition of chemistry is "the branch of science concerned with the properties and transformations of matter." Chemistry is sometimes called the "central science" because of its importance in other fields such as materials, biology, agriculture, medicine, geology, nutrition, law enforcement and engineering. Without knowledge of chemistry, humans could not develop advanced technology, grow enough food, combat disease, drink clean water, make clothing, create artwork, or clean up the environment. Understanding chemistry helps humans appreciate the beauty and complexity of the natural world.
The Chemistry Department offers these programs:
The chemistry major provides a foundation in the sub-disciplines of organic, analytical, physical, and inorganic chemistry. Students may earn either a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) or Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree.
A B.A. in Chemistry with Middle and Secondary Education is also available.
Students apply for admission to the chemistry or biochemistry major in the spring semester of their second year or after they have completed:
|CHM 1110||General Chemistry I||4|
|CHM 1120||General Chemistry II||4|
|CHM 2200||Organic Chemistry I||4|
|CHM 2210||Organic Chemistry II||4|
|CHM 3000||Analytical Chemistry||4|
A completed application to major form is submitted to the department chair. Application to the minor may be made to the department chair after completing CHM 1110 General Chemistry I, CHM 1120 General Chemistry II, and CHM 2200 Organic Chemistry I.
Students admitted to the major must have an overall 2.0 grade point average and a minimum of grade of C- in all required courses. A minimum grade of C- is required in all courses in the minor.
Students must earn a minimum of C- in all courses required for the major and remain in good academic standing with the college to maintain status as a chemistry or biochemistry major. Beyond the minimum grade performance, students are expected to be involved in the community life of the department through attendance at its seminars, involvement in chemistry volunteer and outreach activities, participation in social functions, cooperation with program assessment activities, and if qualified, by serving as a teaching or research assistant.
Course description Introduces basic concepts of chemistry and their relationship or application to sustainability and social issues.
Provides an opportunity to explore and understand the complex chemical components and reactions involved in growing, processing, consuming and digesting food. Students will read research articles involving food chemistry, watch current videos and presentations on food science and conduct their own research on food-related chemical reactions. Class discussions will involve student presentations, summaries and thoughtful interactions regarding course materials. The culminating project will involve crafting a research summary on a topic of choice and presenting it to the class.
Introduces concepts of general, organic, and biochemistry in an integrated rather than a sequential order. Topics include the structure and function of atoms, ions and compounds, the periodic table, organic functional groups, biological macromolecules, and an introduction to metabolism. This course is required for Nursing majors and can be applied to the Exercise Physiology major.
Introduces atomic and molecular structure, bonding, stoichiometry, gas laws, chemical periodicity, and chemical reactions.
Studies solutions, equilibria, coordination chemistry, thermodynamics, electrochemistry, kinetics, nuclear chemistry, and qualitative analysis.
Introduces structure, properties, and reactions of alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, alcohols, alkyl halides, and ethers.
Introduces the structure, properties, and reactions of aldehydes and ketones, carboxylic acids and their derivatives, aromatic compounds, amines, phenols, carbohydrates, amino acids as well as infrared and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy techniques.
Courses not part of the regular curriculum offered as need and interest arises.
Topics in Chemistry.
Analytical Chemistry is a branch of chemistry that aims to identify the components of a mixture (qualitative analysis) and/or determine the amount of one or more components (quantitative analysis). This course will explore the theory and practice of classical analytical methods and instrumentation with emphasis on solution equilibria, electrochemistry, spectroscopy, and chromatography and their relevance to modern chemical analysis. Application of computers and statistics to analytical problems will be a constant theme throughout the course.
Studies modern infrared, nuclear magnetic resonance, and mass spectroscopy; molecular orbital theory applied to bonding and pericyclic reactions; organic synthesis; and topic areas including medicinal, bio-organic, or polymer chemistry.
Studies the structure and role of proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, and nucleic acids in metabolism. Emphasizes protein structure and function, enzyme operation, metabolic pathways and their cellular role and regulation.
Reviews aspects of modern biochemistry as reflected in current research literature. Topics vary but aspects of protein structure, enzyme function and mechanism, signal transduction, metabolism concepts applied to nutrition and metabolic disorders, gene function and regulation are typically presented.
Applies techniques including UV-Vis and fluorescence spectroscopy, protein purification, chromatographic separations, electrophoresis, enzyme kinetics, immunoassays, and antioxidant assays.
Covers postulates of quantum mechanics, particle in a box, harmonic oscillator, rigid rotor, and hydrogen atom with application to electronic structure of atoms and molecules and to atomic and molecular spectroscopy.
A study of the major aspects of polymer chemistry including the history, synthesis, structure, characterization, and properties of synthetic polymers and other macromolecules.
Courses not part of the regular curriculum offered as need and interest arises.
Assesses Chemistry and Biochemistry majors’ knowledge and understanding of major-related topics in a standardized exam during their senior year as part of the Department’s assessment program.
Prepares teaching assistants in areas of classroom management, departmental policies, safety procedures, handling of hazardous materials and waste disposal. One day-long workshop and several follow up sessions for a total of 12-13 hours.
Considers acid-base concepts, bonding, ligand field theory, molecular orbital and symmetry principles, reactions, energetics, coordination compounds, organometallic and bioinorganic chemistry. Laboratory focuses on synthesis and reactions of a broad range of inorganic and organometallic compounds.
Introduces students to original laboratory research in collaboration with a faculty member; requires literature searching, experimental planning, a minimum of 8 hours laboratory work a week, a final written report and an oral presentation of the work.
Studies instrumentation for chemical analysis and method selection. Topics covered include ultraviolet- visible spectroscopy, atomic absorption and emission, polarography and voltammetry, thermal analysis, and chromatography.
Specialized or personalized instruction under the guidance of a faculty member. Requires a written plan of the work to be undertaken and consent of instructor and department chair.
An in-depth survey of different bonding models, including molecular orbital theory, band theory, and non-covalent interactions. The course will then focus on how those theories apply to advanced materials such as porous solids, photovoltaics, and nanoparticles.
An array of thermodynamic concepts will be implemented to solve current challenges in research, environmental chemistry, and industry. Examine the mathematical framework, theory and applications. Construct solutions of relevant thermodynamic questions such as energy efficiency and environmental stewardship.
Survey of analytical spectroscopy including fundamental physical principles, signal generation, data acquisition, and interpretation. The course will progress through the measurement of electronic transitions (atomic and molecular), vibrational molecular transitions, molecular scattering, mass (atomic and molecular), and molecular nuclear magnetic resonance.
Designed to prepare graduate chemistry students to communicate proficiently. The focus is on strategies for reading critically, organizing and summarizing scientific ideas, drawing chemical structures, and communicating to diverse audiences about the field of chemistry. Ethics related to scientific communication will be discussed. Projects may include writing abstracts, literature reviews, grant proposal outlines, eposters, and oral presentations.
Acquire a molecular understanding of the fundamental theories underlying chemical reaction as well its implementation. The fundamentals of reaction rates, collision theory, activated complex and transport properties will be applied to a current kinetic problem. In addition, the kinetics framework will be compared to several practical cases and discussed.
Biochemically distinguish protein structure and function in relation to selected human diseases. Describe the biochemical consequences underlying disease such as sickle cell anemia, diabetes, Alzheimer's and cancer. Recognize that biochemistry integrates knowledge of the chemical processes in living cells with strategies to understand disease and identify potential therapies.
The goal of the course is to deepen student knowledge in the field of bioanalytical chemistry through the identification of complex bioanalytical challenges facing modern scientists and proposal of novel methodologies to solve them. To accomplish this goal, the course will explore the history of bioanalytical measurements, current bioanalytical assays, and emerging bioanalytical techniques and methodologies. Students will develop the skills to: i) critically evaluate the primary literature to identify current bioanalytical challenges, ii) think creatively to propose novel methods or techniques to overcome a challenge in their chosen sub-field (e.g. genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, lipidomics, bioinformatics, or single-cell analysis), and iii) clearly and persuasively communicate their ideas to the scientific community in written and oral formats.
Provides students with the background and knowledge to apply the most current teaching theories and tactics in the chemistry classroom. Students will gain experience and confidence in utilizing multiple educational approaches to teach chemistry. Best practices for teaching will be explored and discussed, including an emphasis on inclusive and adaptive strategies for every classroom. Students will leave with practical and applicable resources, instructional methods, and hands-on approaches to sharing their knowledge of chemistry with others.
Tackle global and societal challenges of providing the world’s energy needs while minimizing environmental damage. The scope is intentionally broad and recognizes the complexity of issues and competing challenges relating to renewable energy production and storage, emerging technologies, and land use.
Discover the important role that chemists contribute to the research and development of pharmaceuticals. Students will investigate drug discovery by integrating knowledge from organic, analytical and medicinal chemistry.
An in-depth look at the elements that make up our universe, including their nucleosynthesis, classification, periodic trends, isolation, and chemical reactivity.
An overview of organometallic structure and mechanisms with an emphasis on organo-transition metal chemistry. The course will address structure and bonding of different ligand types and in different geometries. Elementary reactions will be used to build models of catalytic cycles for new reactions based on precedent.
Topics in Chemistry.