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  • Policy Number: SP.04.019
  • Version: Original
  • Drafted By: Philip D. Hampton, PhD; Simone Aloisio, PhD
  • Approved By: Richard R. Rush
  • Approval Date:
  • Effective Date:
  • Supersedes:


  1.  provide students with a strong undergraduate educational preparation in Chemistry and Biochemistry that is founded on the “Big Ideas” in Chemistry.
  2. To enhance students’ problem-solving, analytical, oral communication, and written communication skills across the Chemistry curriculum.
  3. To encourage team problem-solving and collaboration
  4. To develop students’ ability to read and understand primary literature
  5. To provide students with hands-on exposure to laboratory research through internships and independent research.
  6. To prepare students for further study in graduate or professional schools, or for employment in a variety of public and private organizations.

Through this degree program students will be able to:

  1. Explain the “Big Ideas” of Chemistry and discriminate when they can be applied to problems in Chemistry.
  2. Evaluate and propose explanations for symbolic, microscopic, and macroscopic (real-life) representations of concepts including their relationship to the “Big Ideas” of Chemistry:
  3. Formulate hypotheses and devise and perform experiments to test a hypothesis as individuals and in a team.
  4. Explain key concepts in Chemistry effectively through oral and written communication.
  5. Interpret, evaluate and criticize the chemical literature.





Academic Affairs/Multiple Programs




  1. Geometric Structure- The three dimensional arrangement of atoms in a molecule results in a unique shape which can affect the properties, reactivity, and stability of a molecule, as well as its ability to interact with or bind to another molecule.
  2. Electronic Structure- The energies and extent of filling of atomic orbitals and molecular orbitals in an atom or molecule affects the properties, reactivity and stability of an atom/molecule.  Electronic structure includes the nature of bonds between atoms and the interaction between orbitals on neighboring or remote atoms.
  3. Forces between Molecules- Interactions between groups in a molecule or between molecules can occur over a distance through dispersion forces, dipole-dipole interactions, hydrogen bonding, and crystal packing forces.
  4. Thermodynamics- The stability of an atom/molecule influences its reactivity and determines whether an atom/molecule will react with another atom/molecule.
  5. Kinetics- The rate at which one atom/molecule reacts with another atom/molecule is influenced greatly by the concentrations of the individual species undergoing the reaction, the rate of collisions between molecules, and by the energy needed for atoms/molecules to react individually or with one another.
  6. Reactions -There are four basic ways that molecules react:  (1) Electron-transfer (redox reactions); (2) Lone electron sharing (radical reactions); (3) Electron pair sharing (i.e., acid-base reactions, electrophilic/ nucleophilic reactions); and (4) Concerted Reactions (i.e., pericyclic reactions).


Please see attached document.



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