Chemistry and Biochemistry



Biochemistry, B.S.

Chemistry, B.S.

Biochemistry, B.A.    

Chemistry, B.A.

Chemistry: Teaching, B.A.




(Click major/minor/certificate title to see typical courses for the program)

Students majoring in chemistry are not required to obtain a minor. However, many students in the chemistry program obtain minors, or in some cases double majors, in the related areas of biology, earth science, physics and mathematics.


Plan of Study

Discover the courses you'll take as a chemistry major in the Plan of Study.


University of Northern Iowa chemistry graduates have found employment in a variety of careers. More than 50 percent of the chemistry graduates go on to graduate school and professional schools including medical school. Many of these students have completed or are pursuing M.S., Ph.D. or M.D. degrees.

More than 30 percent of UNI chemistry graduates obtain technical jobs at the bachelor degree level without additional graduate school. A typical job in this case would be a bachelor-degree-level chemist with a chemical or pharmaceutical company. Approximately 10 percent find employment as high school science teachers with an emphasis on chemistry.

Examples of careers pursued by UNI Chemistry graduates include:
  • Research chemist

  • Analytical chemist

  • Quality control chemist

  • Biochemist

  • Synthetic chemist

  • Organic chemist

  • Environmental chemist

  • Pharmaceutical chemist

  • Materials chemist

  • Polymer chemist

  • University professor

  • Physician

  • Dentist

  • Attorney

  • High school teacher

  • Pharmaceutical sales

Unique Features: 
  • ChemistryThe most productive undergraduate program in the state of Iowa in terms of the numbers of majors that annually graduate with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry

  • The opportunity to work with enthusiastic faculty who enjoy teaching chemistry and who have won teaching awards at the college and university levels

  • Small classes that facilitate student-teacher dialogue and interactions

  • Undergraduate research projects with faculty that can result in papers at scientific meetings and publication in journals

  • Laboratory courses that are taught and supervised by faculty and not by graduate students

  • Laboratory assistant work under the direct supervision of faculty in chemistry courses

  • A summer undergraduate research program in which students receive a stipend and work closely with faculty on a wide range of interesting research projects

  • Excellent advising by qualified chemistry faculty on the chemistry program, course scheduling and post-graduate studies, and work after graduation

  • Students attend and participate in a chemistry seminar program which hosts prominent scientists from a variety of university and industrial laboratories.

  • Progress of each student is monitored through the development of a portfolio.

  • Housed in McCollum Science Hall featuring newly renovated laboratories for undergraduate chemistry and environmental science research

  • Wide variety of instrumentation and equipment available for undergraduate teaching and research which includes multi-nuclear NMR, GC-MS, FT-MS, TOF-MS, FT-IR, UV-Vis, fluorescence, Raman spectrometers, several GCs, HPLCs, scintillation counter, ultracentrifuge and electrochemical equipment

  • Newly renovated computer laboratory with a chemistry network based on Pentium IV, workstations and computational chemistry software


The UNI American Chemical Society Student Affiliate Group, which has been consistently recognized nationally as one of the outstanding or commendable chapters, hosts numerous social and educational activities.

Scholarships & Awards: 

Tuition scholarships are available to incoming freshmen from the Chemistry Department (Wilson and Kercheval scholarships) and the College of Natural Sciences (Science, Mathematics and Technology Symposium and McKay scholarships). The Chemistry Faculty Scholarship, the Wanda Wehner Scholarship and other scholarships are available to sophomores and above.

More information on department scholarships can found at Financial Aid.