Chemistry Major

The curriculum of our chemistry program approved by the American Chemical Society (ACS) provides both a broad background in the five traditional subdisciplines of chemistry (analytical, biochemistry, inorganic, organic, and physical) and an in-depth study of chemistry that builds upon these foundational areas. Because chemistry is an experimental science, substantial laboratory work and research experiences are part of the curriculum. The standard chemistry program defined below is a comprehensive, rigorous curriculum to prepare students for professions in both traditional chemistry areas as well as cutting-edge interdisciplinary fields.

Harvey Mudd students also have the opportunity to pursue a specialized program of study within the chemistry major, known as a chemistry “emphasis,” that tailors the required coursework to satisfy particular career objectives. Current emphases include Applied Chemistry (for those interested in careers in Chemical Engineering), Computational Chemistry, Environmental Chemistry, Materials Chemistry, and Geochemistry. Courses for these options are indicated in the table below.

Students may alternatively choose to design their own major emphasis (e.g., Physical Chemistry, Synthetic Chemistry, etc.). Coursework must satisfy the requirements of an ACS-approved and HMC-certified degree as outlined below. A curriculum committee composed of Chemistry faculty members will work individually with majors to assist them in designing an appropriate set of courses for their chosen interest. Students should first consult with their adviser or the department chair to discuss their options.

Standard Program

Chemistry 51, 52, 53, 56, 58, 103, 104, 105, 109, 110, 111, 112, 114, four to six credit hours of Chemistry 151–152, Chemistry 182 and four semesters of Chemistry 199. The requirement for one semester of Chemistry 199 can be waived for students studying abroad in their junior or senior years.