Students can become certified by the ACS (American Chemical Society) if they have completed the curriculum approved by the ACS Committee on Professional Training (CPT). For more information on CPT, visit their website.
Why get a certified degree?
A certified degree in chemistry is a valuable personal credential which serves as national-level recognition for successfully completing a rigorous academic chemistry curriculum in an ACS-approved department. The extra rigor and additional requirements of the certified degree are valued by potential employers and graduate schools alike.
- Employers realize that graduates of approved programs have better preparation for technical employment.
- Although graduate school admissions committees are unlikely to consider overtly whether or not a graduate holds a certified degree, admissions committees will be impressed by the stronger preparation required for a certified degree and by a student being a graduate of an approved department.
Required Courses for the Certified Major
- CHEM 111 Principles of Chemistry
- CHEM 221 Organic Chemistry I
- CHEM 321 Organic Chemistry II
- CHEM 331 Equilibrium and Analysis
- CHEM 341 Thermodynamics and Kinetics
- CHEM 361 Inorganic Chemistry
- CHEM 351 Biochemistry
- CHEM 431 Advanced Analytical Chemistry
- CHEM 441 Quantum Chemistry
- CHEM 480 Senior Seminar
- One course from the following electives:
- CHEM 371 Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology
- CHEM 421 Advanced Organic Chemistry
- CHEM 482 Special Topics
- Two semesters of calculus (MATH 180 and MATH 280)
- Two semesters of physics (either PHYS 125 and PHYS 235 - recommended; or PHYS 120 and PHYS 230)
- Comprehensive Examination
- A collaborative research project is also required. This may be accomplished through a summer (or May term) research experience on or off campus, an approved Ford/Knight or Student Research Project (CHEM 486, minimum of 3 credits) in Chemistry, or a semester off-campus program such as the Oak Ridge program. Careful early planning with your advisor should be done to determine the best option for the research experience.