Master of Science in Chemistry Program Information


The Master of Science (M.S.) program is designed for the student who wishes to pursue a career as a professional chemist or a scientist in other allied disciplines. The program involves work in advanced courses with training in research techniques. An integral part of the program is the individual research project and thesis.

The M.S. program is organized along traditional lines, involving a combination of coursework, research and thesis. Prior to initial course registration in the M.S. program, the student must take entrance examinations in those areas of chemistry represented in the student’s previous coursework. Entrance exam requirements are the same as those for the Ph.D. program; any three of these examinations must be passed by the end of the first three academic terms of residence.

The candidate must complete a minimum of 45 credits in approved graduate courses. Of these, 6 credits of coursework must be outside of the major area of interest but within the Department of Chemistry. All students participate in a one-term course entitled Seminar Preparation as well as present to the department one seminar on an acceptable topic. 

Research & Thesis

Each candidate selects a research adviser, and completes a research project and thesis resulting in an original contribution to knowledge. A final oral examination covers the thesis as well as any aspect of chemistry or related fields. Research projects for the M.S. program cover the same broad range of topics as for the Ph.D. program. They usually center on one of the traditional areas of chemistry, but a student may elect to chose a project specifically related to the environment.

Each candidate for the M.S. degree in chemistry must complete a thesis. The thesis, an experimental or theoretical research project resulting in an original contribution to chemical knowledge, must be defended in an oral examination. The examination is not restricted to the thesis material alone but may cover any aspect of chemistry or related fields.

Completing the master's program typically requires two calendar years for those students holding teaching/and or research assistantships.