Department of Chemistry

Approved by the American Chemical Society

About | Academic Programs | Highlights | Career Opportunities | Student Organizations and Activities | Internships | Scholarships | Courses 


Richard (Rick) E. Norman

Benny Arney, Tom Chasteen, Mary Lynn DeShazo, Dustin GrossDonovan Haines, Paul Loeffler, Rick Norman, Ilona Petrikovics, David Thompson, Rick White, Darren Williams

The Department of Chemistry is committed to providing an educational environment conducive to scholarship, intellectual development, and the acquisition of a foundation of knowledge and techniques required of professional chemists. This goal requires the effective representation of the fundamental areas of chemistry, a dedicated and creative faculty, and support for the many functions of the department.

Contact Information


Academic Programs

Chemistry, MS

Master of Education in Secondary Education: This degree plan is designed primarily for the secondary teacher. All such degrees originate in the College of Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and require the completion of a minimum of thirty hours of graduate credit. Twelve to twenty-four hours of professional education coursework are required (twelve hours minimum for minor and 6 hours minimum for a second minor). A comprehensive examination is required. Based on review of a student’s undergraduate transcript, the Department of Chemistry may require completion of undergraduate stem courses. The degree requires 30 hours of graduate credit as described below:

12-24   semester hours of graduate credit in Chemistry

12-24   semester hours of professional education courses

Other information

Advisory Committee: For students completing a thesis, a thesis research project will begin in the second semester of graduate work. The student and the thesis director, with approval from the chair, will select two additional faculty members to serve as the thesis committee. Once enrolled in a thesis class, a student must be continually enrolled until graduation.

Period of Study: Students taking 9 semester hours of coursework each long semester and 3 semester hours each summer session will be expected to finish their graduate program within two years. A minimum of three long semesters and two summer sessions is required.

Comprehensive exam and oral thesis defense: All graduate students are required to pass a comprehensive exam based on their coursework. The nature of this exam, which may be written and/or oral, will be determined by the faculty in consultation with the student’s thesis director. MS students will be tested on three of five areas (Analytical Chemistry, Physical Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry, and Biochemistry). Students must be enrolled the semester that they take comprehensive examinations. An oral presentation of the thesis to the faculty in a seminar format is required, and the thesis must be defended before the student’s thesis committee.

Senior Courses Open to Graduate Students

CHEM 4440 <CHM 440>   Instrumental Analytical Chemistry (Credit 4)          
CHEM 4442 <CHM 442>   Air Quality (Credit 4)
CHEM 4443 <CHM 443>    Structural Spectroscopic Methods (Credit 4)
CHEM 4448 <CHM 448>   Physical Chemistry I (Credit 4)
CHEM 4367 <CHM 467>   Advanced Inorganic Chemistry (Credit 3)
CHEM 4449 <CHM 449>   Physical Chemistry II (Credit 4)

A maximum of six hours of 400-level courses may be taken toward the completion of the master’s degree. Course requirements in 400-level courses will be appropriately modified for graduate credit.


  • The Department of Chemistry moved into an impressive new facility (the Chemistry/ Forensic Science Building) during the Fall semester of 2005 greatly expanding and improving the laboratory facilities.

Career Opportunities

Everything around you is composed of chemicals. We live in a world of chemicals and life would not be possible without them. An understanding of the fundamentals of chemistry is important for everyone in today’s society. Professional chemists are working to enhance our quality of life by improvements in food, medicine, clothing, building supplies, products for recreation, and a whole range of consumer products.

Virtually every industry or business that makes or sells a product is involved in chemistry. It is no wonder that the various areas of chemical and biochemical technology offer the largest field of employment in the physical sciences. Chemists are employed in fields such as:

  • environmental analysis
  • agriculture
  • biotechnology
  • pharmaceutical research
  • waste management
  • energy production
  • forensic science
  • petrochemical industry

Chemistry graduates will find many applications for their training in the fields of education, business, industry, law, government, and medicine.

Student Organizations and Activities

Chemistry Club - The Chemistry Club is an active organization which encourages student interactions in a social atmosphere and which supports student travel to professional meetings.


Scholarships are available from the Department in Chemistry and from the University to support students’ studies. For further information, contact the Chair, Department of Chemistry or visit the Department of Chemistry Home Page. Information on University scholarships may be obtained from the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships website at or telephone (936) 294-1672.


Chemistry (CHEM)

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