Bachelor of Science
College of Arts and Sciences
Chemistry is the study of how substances behave and how their properties are changed. Understanding chemistry is essential to many other fields of science such as biology, geology and medicine. The chemistry field includes many subspecializations including analytical chemistry, biochemistry, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry and physical chemistry. Other more specialized areas are spectroscopy, photochemistry and biomedical aspects of biochemistry.
Careers in chemistry are numerous and varied. Graduates have exciting employment opportunities at many different levels. Chemists work on environmental problems; develop new processes, products and materials; develop new drugs and therapies; study biochemical processes in living systems; and discover the molecular basis for diseases such as cancer.
They also assist law enforcement agencies through analysis of DNA, blood, fibers and other materials. Some chemists study air pollution and reactions in the upper atmosphere. Others teach at the high school and college level. There is a continuous need for chemistry graduates.
At BGSU the chemistry faculty prepares students to be professional chemists and biochemists. Chemistry is an essential science in the health professions, and students who wish to enroll in medical or dental school need a minimum of two years of chemistry, preferably including biochemistry. Though the job market for bachelor’s degree chemists is strong, most graduates pursue advanced degrees in chemistry, biochemistry or in the health professions.
The chemistry major requires courses in general, analytical, organic and physical chemistry, as well as inorganic and biochemistry electives. Chemistry students have a choice of several programs of study depending on their career goals. Students planning professional science careers may choose a rigorous program leading to certification by the American Chemical Society. Students choosing to study chemistry or a related science further may seek a less demanding program which adequately prepares them for graduate work.
A specialization in biochemistry provides a unique and popular program which integrates chemistry, biochemistry and biology to open numerous career choices. Alternate programs are designed for pre-health professionals and students interested in careers other than research. A program leading to teacher certification is also available. Departmental advisors assist students in careful planning of the courses suited to individual career goals.
At BGSU, undergraduate chemistry students are encouraged to assist faculty members and graduate students by working in the laboratory on specific chemistry research problems. This work often leads to publications in professional journals and presentations at regional or national meetings. Students have opportunities to work with highly sophisticated equipment such as NMR spectrometers, mass spectrometers, gas and liquid chromatographs, ultracentrifuges, computer assisted instrumentation and laser equipment. With a photochemical sciences emphasis at the graduate level, undergraduates also have the opportunity for training in this area.
A combined baccalaureate-master’s program allows highly motivated students to complete both the bachelor and master of science degrees in four years, including summers, rather than the typical five or six years.
Students planning to study chemistry or biochemistry should have taken a year of high school chemistry. They should also have a strong background in mathematics, including a year of calculus if possible. Courses in biology, physics, a foreign language and English composition are also valuable. Students who are not able to obtain this preparation through high school courses may take courses at BGSU that prepare them for advanced chemistry courses.
Completing the requirements for high school graduation is necessary for admission to BGSU, but only finishing the minimum coursework will leave you unprepared for college. Consider taking four years of mathematics instead of the three that are required. Two, three or even four years of the same foreign language is excellent for preparation for college. You will also benefit from competency in computer use. Courses that provide exposure to or training in the visual and performing arts are excellent choices.
BGSU's website for future students contains University highlights, admissions procedures, financial aid information and many department profiles. It can be accessed at www.bgsu.edu.
Bowling Green State University is a vibrant university that engages, challenges and prepares students for meaningful futures. At BGSU, students enjoy an education that integrates personal growth, academic excellence and an environment that expands their thinking and potential. A mid-size residential university, BGSU has an enrollment of approximately 20,000 and a full-time faculty of more than 900 on its main campus. More than 200 undergraduate majors and programs are offered as well as master's and doctoral level programs.
NOTE: Information in this guide is subject to change without notice. To learn more about the official program of study for Chemistry, please check the undergraduate catalog online at www.bgsu.edu/catalog/A_S/A_S40.html.