REQUIRED COURSES

  • Introductory Level (a)
    • First Year:
      • Fall: 151, 153, or 155 Introductory Chemistry
      • Spring: 156 Organic Chemistry: Introductory Level
    • Second Year:
      • Fall: 151, 251 (or 255) Organic Chemistry: Intermediate Level
      • Spring: 256 Foundations of Modern Chemical Sciences

ELECTIVE COURSES

  • Advanced Level (e)
    • 319 Integrative Bioinformatics, Genomics, and Proteomics Lab
    • 321 Biochemistry I–Structure and Function of Biological Molecules
    • 322 Biochemistry II–Metabolism
    • 324 Enzyme Kinetics and Reaction Mechanisms
    • 335 Inorganic/Organometallic Chemistry
    • 336 Materials Chemistry
    • 341 Toxicology and Cancer
    • 342 Synthetic Organic Chemistry
    • 343 Medicinal Chemistry
    • 344T Physical Organic Chemistry
    • 348 Polymer Chemistry
    • 361 Physical Chemistry (e): Structure and Dynamics
    • 364 Instrumental Methods of Analysis
    • 366 Physical Chemistry: Thermodynamics
    • 367 Biophysical Chemistry (f)
    • 368T Quantum Chemistry and Molecular Spectroscopy
  • Independent Research Courses
    • 393, 394 Junior Research and Thesis
    • 397, 398 Independent Study, for juniors
    • 493-W031-494 Senior Research and Thesis
    • 497, 498 Independent Study, for seniors


For the purpose of assisting students in selecting a program consistent with their interests and possible continuation of their studies at the graduate level, the following groupings of electives and faculty advisors are suggested. However, a case can be made for selecting courses from the different groups.

Area Recommended Courses Faculty to Consult
Biochemistry
BiMo Homepage
Chemistry 321, Chemistry 322, Chemistry 324, Chemistry 341, Chemistry 364, Chemistry 367 Professors Gehring, Kaplan, or Lovett
Organic Chemistry Chemistry 341, Chemistry 342, Chemistry 344T, Chemistry 348, Chemistry 361, Chemistry 364, Chemistry 366 Professors S. Goh, Oyelaran, Richardson, or Smith
Physical and Inorganic Chemistry Chemistry 335, Chemistry 361, Chemistry 364, Chemistry 366, Chemistry 368T Physical Chemistry:Professors Bingemann, Peacock-Lopez, or Thoman
Inorganic Chemistry: Professors C. Goh or Park
Materials Science* Chemistry 336, Chemistry 335, Chemistry 364, Chemistry 366 Professors S. Goh or Park

* Students interested in Materials Science are encouraged to elect courses from the Materials Science cluster offered jointly with the Physics Department.


The Chemistry major provides excellent preparation for graduate study in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical engineering, environmental science, medicine, and the medical sciences. The major can also be useful to those whose later professional or business careers may be related to chemical materials or processes. While any accepted route through the major would permit a student to proceed to graduate study in chemistry, three electives should be considered a minimum, and the particular importance of Chemistry 321, 335, 361, 364, and 366 as preparation for advanced study should be noted. In addition, at least a semester of research and courses in computer science are strongly recommended.

Students with principal interests outside of the sciences may extend a secondary school foundation in chemistry by electing a basic two-semester introductory course of a general nature or they may elect semester courses designed for non-majors. All courses in chemistry satisfy the distribution requirement.

The Department is accredited by the American Chemical Society (A.C.S.), a professional body of academic, industrial, and research chemists. The A.C.S. suggests the following courses for someone considering graduate study or work in chemistry or a related area. Students completing these courses are designated Certified A.C.S. Majors: 151 (153 or 155), 156, 251 (255), 256, 335, 361, 364, 366, 493-494; and at least two courses from 321, 322, 342, 344T, 368T, BIMO 401.

BIOCHEMISTRY AND MOLECULAR BIOLOGY (BIMO)
Students interested in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology should consult withthe general statement under the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Program (BIMO)in the Courses of Instruction. Students interested in completing the BIMO program are also encouraged to complete the biochemistry courses within the chemistry majorby taking 321, 322, 324, and 367 in addition to the first and second year required courses.

BIOINFORMATICS, GENOMICS, AND PROTEOMICS (BiGP)
Students interested in Bioinformatics, Genomics, and Proteomics should consult the general statement under Bioinformatics, Genomics, and Proteomics in the Courses of Instruction. Students interested in these areas are also encouraged to complete the biochemistry courses within the chemistry major by taking 319, 321, 322, 324 and 367 in addition to the first and second year required courses.

MATERIALS SCIENCE
Students interested in Materials Science are encouraged to elect courses from theMaterials Science program offered jointly with the Physics Department, and should consult that listing.

The Degree with Honors in Chemistry

The Degree with Honors in Chemistry provides students with an opportunity to undertake an independent research project under the supervision of a faculty member, and to report on the nature of the work in two short oral presentations and in a written thesis.

Chemistry majors who are candidates for the Degree with Honors take the following in addition to a major listed above:

  • 493-W031-494: Senior Research and Thesis

The principal considerations in admitting a student to a program of independent research will be mastery of fundamental materials and skills, ability to pursue independent study successfully, and demonstrated student interest and motivation. In addition, to enroll in these courses leading to a Degree with Honors, a student must have a B- average in all chemistry courses or the permission of the chair. At the end of the first semester, the Department will review the student’s progress and determine whether the student is a candidate for a Degree with Honors. The designation of a Degree with Honors in Chemistry or a Degree with Highest Honors in Chemistry is based primarily on a departmental evaluation of the accomplishments in these courses and on the quality of the thesis. Completion of the research project in a satisfactory manner and preparation of a well-written thesis willusually result in a Degree with Honors. In cases where a student has demonstrated unusual commitment and initiative resulting in an outstanding thesis based on original experimental results, combined with a strong record in all of his or her chemistry courses, the Department will award a Degree with Highest Honors in Chemistry.

Exchange and Transfer Students

Students from other institutions wishing to register for courses in chemistry involving college level prerequisites should do so in person with a member of the Chemistry Department staff. Registration should take place by appointment during the spring semester prior to the academic year in which courses are to be taken. Students are requested to have with them transcripts of the relevant previous college work.

COURSES FOR NON-MAJORS WITH NO PREREQUISITES
Students with principal interests outside of the sciences may extend a secondary school foundation in chemistry by electing a basic two-semester introductory course of a general nature or they may elect semester courses designed for non-majors. All courses in chemistry satisfy the divisional distribution requirement.

STUDY ABROAD
Students who wish to complete a chemistry major (or chemistry requirements for pre-medical study) as well as to study abroad during their junior year are encouragedto begin taking chemistry in their first semester at Williams, and should consult withmembers of the department as early as possible.