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Chemistry Major (Comprehensive)
Chemistry Major (Forensic Chemistry concentration)
Chemistry Major Secondary Education

Chemistry Minor






Faculty and Academic Staff

James W. Lane, Professor

Christine N. Polkinghorne, Lecturer
Kate Swanson

Michael A. Waxman, Professor


The Department of Chemistry is approved by the American Chemical Society (ACS). Students may take sufficient additional chemistry courses to prepare for graduate school and to meet requirements of the American Chemical Society to have transcripts marked “ACS-certified Major (General Option).”


Chemistry Major


56 credits

All grades in required courses for the major must be C or higher, except that two grades of C- may be counted toward the major. No minor is required.


Required courses:

CHEM 105                                                                                                                  5 credits

CHEM 106                                                                                                                  4 credits

CHEM 205/206                                                                                                           5 credits

CHEM 320/322/327                                                                                                    6 credits

CHEM 321/323                                                                                                           5 credits

CHEM 345/347                                                                                                           5 credits

CHEM 365                                                                                                                  3 credits

CHEM 360 or 366                                                                                                       3 credits

CHEM 481 or 491 or 496                                                                                           1 credit

CHEM 497                                                                                                                  1 credit

MATH 240/241                                                                                                           8 credits

PHYS 201


PHYS 107/205 and PHYS 202


PHYS 108/206                                                                                                              10 credits

Total                                                                                                                              56 credits


Recommended: MATH 242



1. Secondary Education: Chemistry majors seeking certification to teach high school chemistry should choose CHEM 366. These students also must meet the Professional Education requirements, including a course in the history and philosophy of science (PHYS 300). See the Teacher Education section of this catalog, the Teacher Education handbook, and consult with your advisors in Chemistry and Teacher Education.


2. Professional Chemistry option: This option is recommended for students considering graduate school in chemistry or employment as a professional chemist. The additional coursework provides the student with a stronger theoretical and practical foundation. In addition to the core required courses for the comprehensive liberal arts degree, students must also complete:

a. CHEM 346/348                                                                                           5 credits

b. CHEM 375/376                                                                                           5 credits


3. American Chemical Society (ACS)-Certified option: This option is recommended especially for students who plan to attend graduate school in chemistry as well as for students desiring additional theoretical and laboratory training in specialized areas of chemistry. In addition to the core required courses for the comprehensive liberal arts degree, students also must complete:

a. CHEM 346/348                                                                                           5 credits

b. CHEM 375/376                                                                                           5 credits

c. CHEM 360 and 366 (3 additional credits)                                                     3 credits

d. CHEM 367                                                                                                  1 credit

e. A total of six credits of 400-level courses in Chemistry, excluding CHEM 497.

f. One additional laboratory credit, which also may count for item e. A student who maintains a cumulative GPA of 2.000 for the aforementioned coursework is eligible to have his or her transcript marked “ACS-certified (General Option)” and to receive a certificate from the American Chemical Society indicating receipt of an ACS-certified degree.


4. Biochemistry option: Chemistry majors interested in attending graduate school in biochemistry or pursuing a career in the field of biochemistry are advised to take CHEM 360, 462/465 as well as the following biology courses: BIOL 130, 132, 330, 355, 440. While this is not a formal biochemistry major, students choosing this option will have completed the topics recommended for a biochemistry major by the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Students who also choose BIOL 340 will complete a minor in biology.


Chemistry Major

Forensic Chemistry Concentration


63 credits

(Effective Fall 2009)


Forensic chemistry is increasingly used to solve crimes and provide evidence in court. The U.S. Department of Labor and the American Chemical Society are both optimistic about the job prospects for forensic chemists.


The Forensic Chemistry Concentration emphasizes analytical chemistry along with Criminal Justice courses dealing with handling evidence and other legal issues. The courses for this concentration satisfy the admission requirements for many forensic chemistry and forensic science graduate programs.


Those interested in attending graduate school in forensic chemistry or forensic science or pursuing a career in the field of forensics are required to take the following courses specifically tailored to the needs of this field.



Required courses:

CHEM 105 General Chemistry I                                           5 credits

CHEM 106 General Chemistry II                                          4 credits

CHEM 205 Quantitative Analysis Lecture                             3 credits

CHEM 206 Quantitative Analysis Laboratory                        2 credits

CHEM 320 Organic Chemistry Lecture I                              3 credits

CHEM 321 Organic Chemistry Lecture II                             3 credits

CHEM 322 Organic Chemistry Laboratory I                         2 credits

CHEM 323 Organic Chemistry Laboratory II                        2 credits

CHEM 327 Molecular Spectroscopy I                                  1 credit

CHEM 360 Introduction to Biochemistry                               3 credits

CHEM 375 Instrumental Analysis Lecture                             3 credits

CHEM 376 Instrumental Analysis Laboratory                       2 credits

CHEM 381 Intermediate Topics *                                        3 credits


BIOL/CHEM 465 Laboratory Techniques in Biochemistry and Cell/Molecular Biology     2 credits

BIOL/CHEM 481 Special Topics (internship)                                                                  2 credits

BIOL 492/CHEM 497 Senior Seminar                                                                            1 credit


BIOL 330 Genetics **                                                                                                    4 credits

CJUS 210 Criminal Procedure and Evidence                                                                    3 credits

CJUS 212 Managing Criminal Investigations                                                                     3 credits

MATH 240 Calculus and Analytic Geometry I                                                                  4 credits

PHYS 107 General Physics I (non-calculus based)                                                           4 credits

PHYS 108 General Physics II (non-calculus based)                                                          4 credits  



* CHEM 381 -- Topic: Introduction to Physical Chemistry
** A year of high school biology or BIOL 130 Principles of Biology is recommended.


Chemistry Major

Secondary Education

A severe shortage exists of secondary education teachers in chemistry. Many high schools must hire students with only a minor in chemistry. Students with this major will be very competitive in the secondary education job market, especially if they have a secondary education major in biology or mathematics.


Required courses:        

Graduates may obtain this major only if they complete all requirements for secondary education certification.

CHEM 105 General Chemistry I                                                                       5 credits

CHEM 106 General Chemistry II                                                                     4 credits

CHEM 205 Quantitative Analysis Lecture                                                         3 credits

CHEM 206 Quantitative Analysis Laboratory                                                   2 credits

CHEM 312 Organic Chemistry--A Short Course                                              3 credits

CHEM 313 Introduction to Organic Chemistry Laboratory                               2 credits

CHEM 381 Introduction to Physical Chemistry                                                 3 credits

MATH 115 Precalculus                                                                                    5 credits

PHYS 107 General Physics I (non-calculus based)                                            4 credits

PHYS 108 General Physics II (non-calculus based)                                          4 credits


 1. Students may substitute CHEM 320-323, 327 for CHEM 312/313.


2. Students may substitute CHEM 345 for CHEM 341.


3. Students may substitute PHYS 201 for PHYS 107 and PHYS 202 for PHYS 108.


4. Students must satisfactorily complete all DPI and UW-Superior requirements for secondary education certification, including PHYS 300 History and Philosophy of Science and BIOL 339 or CHEM 339 or PHYS 339 Teaching Science in the Secondary School.



Chemistry Minor

A minimum of 22 credits of Chemistry, including: CHEM 105, CHEM 106.


Remaining credits must be obtained by completing one of the following sequences:


CHEM 205, 206, 312, 313, and either 300 or 360 or 345/347 (total 22-24)


CHEM 320-323, 327, and either 205/206 or 300 or 360 or 365 or 381* (total 23-25)


* CHEM 381 Introduction to Physical Chemistry (3 credits)



See Course Descriptions for more information on required courses.