To the courses of the Core Option, the Chemical Biology Option adds

  • at least 4 credits of senior-level research; 6 credits are recommended
  • one or two courses related to biochemistry
  • one advanced course in chemistry, possibly a second biochemistry course.

An “advanced course” is a chemistry or chemistry-related course that is not part of the core, but has a major element of the core curriculum as a pre-requisite, either the second semester of organic chemistry or the second semester of physical chemistry. An advanced course will typically have a 400 number assigned to it in the Undergraduate Catalog.

The Chemical Biology Option leads to certification by the American Chemical Society, a credential that is valued by some employers.

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Chemical Biology Option and Typical Schedule
Fall Spring
General Chemistry Lecture (4.0 cr)1
 01:160:161 OR
General Chemistry Lecture (4.0 cr)
 01:160:162 OR

General Chemistry Laboratory (1.0 cr)
01:160:171 Either fall or spring
Calculus I (4.0 cr)
Calculus II (4.0 cr)
Fall Spring

Organic Chemistry Lecture (4.0 cr)
 01:160:307 OR
 01:160:3152 (by invitation)


Analytical Chemistry (3.0 cr)


General Physics (3.0 cr)


General Physics Lab (1.0 cr)


Multivariable Calculus (4.0 cr)


Organic Chemistry Lecture (4.0 cr)
 01:160:308 OR


Organic Chemistry Laboratory3  (2.5 cr)


General Physics (3.0 cr)


General Physics Lab (1.0 cr)


Linear Algebra (3.0 cr)
 01:640:250 OR
Elementary Differential Equations (3.0 cr)

Fall Spring


Physical Chemistry Lecture (3.0 cr)

 01:160:327 OR 01:160:3414 

Organic Chemistry Laboratory2 (2.5 cr)

Inorganic Chemistry (3.0 cr)

 Instrumental Analysis (3.0 cr)

Physical Chemistry Lecture (3.0 cr) 

01:160:328 OR 01:160:342

 Experimental Physical Chemistry (2.5 cr)

 Inorganic Chemistry (1.5 cr)
 01:160:352 OR 01:160:3536

Fall Spring

Seminar (1.0 cr)


Research (≥2 cr)
 01:160:495 Independent Study OR
 01:160:497 Honors Research7 

Biochemistry8 (3 cr)
 01:160:437 Biophysical Chemistry I
 01:694:407 Molecular Biology and Biochem
 11:115:403 General Biochemistry (3)

Seminar (1.0 cr)


Research (≥2 cr)
 01:160:496 Independent Study OR
 01:160:498 Honors Research

Biochemistry (3 cr)
 01:160:438 (3 cr) Biophysical Chemistry I
 Course selected from list9 below.


Chemical Biology Option: Course and Scheduling Notes

Detailed schedules for the third and the fourth years may vary. Some students defer Chemical Bonding, Inorganic Chemistry, and Instrumental Analysis to the senior year.
1 Pre-calculus prerequisite
2 Chem 309 is offered in the spring only; Chem 310 is offered only in the fall only.
3 By invitation only.
4 Chemistry 327 and 341 have Math 251 as a pre-requisite, not as a co-requisite.
  Chemistry 327-328 is acceptable for all Chemistry majors and is required for the Chemical Physics Option.
  Chemistry 341-342 is recommended for students oriented toward the life sciences, and for students taking the Chemical Biology option.
5 Chem 348 is offered in the fall only and has Chem 251 as a pre-requisite. Chem 251 is offered both fall and spring.
6 351 and 352 and 353 may be deferred for either one or two semesters, if desired. Chem 351 is offered in the Fall and Spring. Chem 352 is offered in the Spring only. Chem 353 is offered in the Fall only. Chem 352 and Chem 353 have Chem 351 and Chem 308 or 316 as well as Calc II as pre-requisites.
7 Permission of department. Open only to senior honors students. For a complete description of the requirements for Honors in Chemistry, see Honors.
8 The biochemistry courses listed are offered only in the fall. The two-semester sequence 01:160:437 -438 is preferred.
9 Students may choose any of the courses from the list below.

  • 01:160:418 Bioorganic Mechanisms (3) or 11:115:412 Protein & Enzyme Chemistry (3)
  • 11:115:410 Physical Biochemistry (3)
  • 01:160:476 Bioinorganic Chemistry (3)
  • 01:694:408 Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (3) or 11:115:404 General Biochemistry (3)
  • 30:715:451 Advanced Medicinal Chemistry (3)


Undergraduate Vice Chair
Ralf Warmuth

Undergraduate Coordinator
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