This program is approved by the American Chemical Society. Upon completion, students who choose either the BS in Chemistry with no concentration or with the Analytical Chemistry concentration are certified to the society. Students that have a keen interest in sustainability should choose the Environmental Chemistry concentration. Students planning professional careers in chemistry should choose this degree.

Teacher Licensure

Students who wish to become teachers and plan to seek teacher licensure should consider the following options:

Interested students should attend an information session early in their undergraduate career. For more information, visit the Graduate School of Education's website.

Admissions

University-wide admissions policies can be found in the Undergraduate Admissions Policies section of this catalog.

To apply for this program, please complete the George Mason University Admissions Application.

Policies

Students must fulfill all Requirements for Bachelor's Degrees, including the Mason Core.

CHEM 336 Physical Chemistry Lab I or CHEM 465 Biochemistry Lab will fulfill the writing intensive requirement for students majoring in chemistry.

Termination from the Major

To ensure the academic integrity of the Chemistry and Biochemistry undergraduate major program, students are expected to maintain a satisfactory level of academic performance.

No chemistry, math, or science course that is required for the major may be attempted more than three times. Students who do not successfully complete such a course with a grade of C or better by the third attempt may be terminated from the major.

Students who have been terminated from the Chemistry major may not register for a chemistry course without the permission of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.

A student may not declare a major in chemistry if the student has previously met the termination criteria for the major at any time, regardless of what the student’s major was at the time the courses were taken.

Banner Code: SC-BS-CHEM

Degree Requirements

Total credits: minimum 120

Students should refer to the Admissions & Policies tab for specific policies related to this program.

Students majoring in chemistry must complete the chemistry program requirements with a minimum GPA of 2.30 and present no more than two courses with a grade of 'D' (1.00) in CHEM coursework at graduation.

BS without Concentration

Students who do not select an optional concentration complete the curriculum requirements listed below.

Chemistry Courses

CHEM 211General Chemistry I (Mason Core)3
CHEM 212General Chemistry II (Mason Core)3
CHEM 213General Chemistry Laboratory I (Mason Core)1
CHEM 214General Chemistry Laboratory II (Mason Core)1
CHEM 313Organic Chemistry I3
CHEM 314Organic Chemistry II3
CHEM 315Organic Chemistry Lab I2
CHEM 318Organic Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 321Quantitative Chemical Analysis4
CHEM 331Physical Chemistry I3
CHEM 332Physical Chemistry II3
CHEM 336Physical Chemistry Lab I 12
CHEM 337Physical Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 422Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis3
CHEM 423Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis Laboratory2
CHEM 441Properties and Bonding of Inorganic Compounds3
CHEM 445Inorganic Preparations and Techniques2
CHEM 463General Biochemistry I4
Select 3 credits of chemistry electives 23
In Depth Electives
Select one from the following:3
Synthetic and Mechanistic Organic Chemistry
Aquatic Environmental Chemistry
Atmospheric Chemistry
Chemical Oceanography
General Biochemistry II
The Chemistry of Enzyme-Catalyzed Reactions
Bioorganic Chemistry
Total Credits52

Mathematics Courses

MATH 113Analytic Geometry and Calculus I (Mason Core)4
MATH 114Analytic Geometry and Calculus II4
MATH 213Analytic Geometry and Calculus III3
Total Credits11

Physics Courses

PHYS 160University Physics I (Mason Core)3
PHYS 161University Physics I Laboratory (Mason Core)1
PHYS 260University Physics II (Mason Core)3
PHYS 261University Physics II Laboratory (Mason Core)1
Total Credits8

Concentration in Environmental Chemistry (EVCH)

Students who choose this concentration will have a broad knowledge of chemistry and a firm foundation in the environmental sciences covering atmospheric, aquatic, and soil. The major prepares students to work in the public or private sector as environmental chemists as well as to pursue an advanced degree.

Chemistry Courses

CHEM 211General Chemistry I (Mason Core)3
CHEM 213General Chemistry Laboratory I (Mason Core)1
CHEM 212General Chemistry II (Mason Core)3
CHEM 214General Chemistry Laboratory II (Mason Core)1
CHEM 313Organic Chemistry I3
CHEM 314Organic Chemistry II3
CHEM 315Organic Chemistry Lab I2
CHEM 318Organic Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 321Quantitative Chemical Analysis4
CHEM 331Physical Chemistry I3
CHEM 332Physical Chemistry II3
CHEM 336Physical Chemistry Lab I 12
CHEM 337Physical Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 422Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis3
CHEM 423Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis Laboratory2
CHEM 427Aquatic Environmental Chemistry3
CHEM 438Atmospheric Chemistry3
CHEM 441Properties and Bonding of Inorganic Compounds3
or CHEM 446 Bioinorganic Chemistry
CHEM Elective (lecture or research course)3
Total Credits49

Physics Courses

Select one option:8
Option One:
University Physics I (Mason Core)
University Physics I Laboratory (Mason Core)
University Physics II (Mason Core)
University Physics II Laboratory (Mason Core)
Option Two:
College Physics I (Mason Core)
College Physics I Lab (Mason Core)
College Physics II (Mason Core)
College Physics II Lab (Mason Core)
Total Credits8

Mathematics Courses

MATH 113Analytic Geometry and Calculus I (Mason Core)4
MATH 114Analytic Geometry and Calculus II4
MATH 213Analytic Geometry and Calculus III3
or STAT 250 Introductory Statistics I (Mason Core)
Total Credits11

Science Core Courses

GEOL 101Introductory Geology I (Mason Core)4
GEOL 306Soil Science3
EVPP 210Environmental Biology: Molecules and Cells4
or BIOL 213 Cell Structure and Function (Mason Core)
Total Credits11

Supporting Science Electives 

Select two courses from the following: 16-8
Chemical Oceanography
Oceanography
Oceanography
Oceanography
Environmental Science: Biological Diversity and Ecosystems
Principles of Environmental Toxicology
Environmental Geology
Hydrogeology
Biology of Microorganisms
and Biology of Microorganisms Laboratory
Environmental Microbiology Essentials
and Environmental Microbiology Essentials Laboratory
Global Environmental Hazards
Total Credits6-8

The remaining credits are fulfilled by Mason Core requirements or general electives.

Concentration in Analytical Chemistry (ANAC)

The Analytical Chemistry concentration is designed to introduce and train students in modern aspects of analytical chemistry. Students who choose this program will be well prepared to run sophisticated analytical instruments in industry and research laboratories and to pursue an advanced degree specializing in analytical chemistry. 

Chemistry Courses

CHEM 211General Chemistry I (Mason Core)3
CHEM 213General Chemistry Laboratory I (Mason Core)1
CHEM 212General Chemistry II (Mason Core)3
CHEM 214General Chemistry Laboratory II (Mason Core)1
CHEM 313Organic Chemistry I3
CHEM 314Organic Chemistry II3
CHEM 315Organic Chemistry Lab I2
CHEM 318Organic Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 321Quantitative Chemical Analysis4
CHEM 331Physical Chemistry I3
CHEM 332Physical Chemistry II3
CHEM 336Physical Chemistry Lab I 12
CHEM 337Physical Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 422Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis3
CHEM 423Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis Laboratory2
CHEM 427Aquatic Environmental Chemistry3
or CHEM 355 Undergraduate Research
or CHEM 451 Special Projects in Chemistry
or CHEM 452 Special Projects in Chemistry
CHEM 463General Biochemistry I4
CHEM 441Properties and Bonding of Inorganic Compounds3
CHEM 465Biochemistry Lab2
or CHEM 445 Inorganic Preparations and Techniques
CHEM 424Principles of Chemical Separation3
or CHEM 425 Electroanalytical Chemistry
Total Credits52

Physics Courses

PHYS 160University Physics I (Mason Core)3
PHYS 161University Physics I Laboratory (Mason Core)1
PHYS 260University Physics II (Mason Core)3
PHYS 261University Physics II Laboratory (Mason Core)1
Total Credits8

Mathematics Courses

MATH 113Analytic Geometry and Calculus I (Mason Core)4
MATH 114Analytic Geometry and Calculus II4
MATH 213Analytic Geometry and Calculus III3
Total Credits11

Supporting Science Electives 

Select 6 credits from the following:6
Introduction to Bioengineering
Introductory Statistics I (Mason Core)
Introduction to Electrical and Computer Engineering
Modern Instrumentation
Total Credits6

The remaining hours are used to fulfill the Mason Core requirements and general elective courses.

CDS 130 Computing for Scientists is required to fulfill the Mason Core IT requirement.

Concentration in Biochemistry (BC)

Students planning professional careers in biochemistry, the pharmaceutical industry, medicine, biotechnology, or related fields with a chemistry emphasis should choose this program instead of the Chemistry, BS without a concentration. This concentration provides students with a focus on biochemistry while retaining a strong chemistry foundation. Students are allowed to tailor the concentration to their interests with 9 credits of biology or chemistry elective credits.

Chemistry Courses

CHEM 211General Chemistry I (Mason Core)3
CHEM 213General Chemistry Laboratory I (Mason Core)1
CHEM 212General Chemistry II (Mason Core)3
CHEM 214General Chemistry Laboratory II (Mason Core)1
CHEM 313Organic Chemistry I3
CHEM 314Organic Chemistry II3
CHEM 315Organic Chemistry Lab I2
CHEM 318Organic Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 321Quantitative Chemical Analysis4
CHEM 331Physical Chemistry I3
CHEM 336Physical Chemistry Lab I 12
CHEM 446Bioinorganic Chemistry3
CHEM 463General Biochemistry I4
CHEM 464General Biochemistry II3
CHEM 465Biochemistry Lab 12
Total Credits39

Mathematics Courses

MATH 113Analytic Geometry and Calculus I (Mason Core)4
MATH 114Analytic Geometry and Calculus II4
Total Credits8

Physics Courses

Select one option:8
Option One:
College Physics I (Mason Core)
College Physics I Lab (Mason Core)
College Physics II (Mason Core)
College Physics II Lab (Mason Core)
Option Two:
University Physics I (Mason Core)
University Physics I Laboratory (Mason Core)
University Physics II (Mason Core)
University Physics II Laboratory (Mason Core)
Total Credits8

Biology Courses

BIOL 213Cell Structure and Function (Mason Core)4
BIOL 305Biology of Microorganisms3
BIOL 306Biology of Microorganisms Laboratory1
Total Credits8

Approved Science Electives

Select 9 credits of approved science electives chosen from CHEM or BIOL courses numbered 302-499 19
Total Credits9

 Concentration in Materials Chemistry (MATC)

Students in the Materials Chemistry concentration explore nanostructures and how they relate to the macroscale physical and chemical properties of a material. Students interested in a career specializing in the synthesis and characterization of materials, as well as applied areas of materials chemistry, obtain a firm foundation in this subfield of chemistry.  

Chemistry Courses

CHEM 211General Chemistry I (Mason Core)3
CHEM 213General Chemistry Laboratory I (Mason Core)1
CHEM 212General Chemistry II (Mason Core)3
CHEM 214General Chemistry Laboratory II (Mason Core)1
CHEM 313Organic Chemistry I3
CHEM 314Organic Chemistry II3
CHEM 315Organic Chemistry Lab I2
CHEM 318Organic Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 321Quantitative Chemical Analysis4
CHEM 331Physical Chemistry I3
CHEM 332Physical Chemistry II3
CHEM 336Physical Chemistry Lab I 12
CHEM 337Physical Chemistry Lab II2
CHEM 441Properties and Bonding of Inorganic Compounds3
CHEM 445Inorganic Preparations and Techniques2
CHEM 472Modern Polymer Chemistry3
Total Credits40

Mathematics Courses

MATH 113Analytic Geometry and Calculus I (Mason Core)4
MATH 114Analytic Geometry and Calculus II4
MATH 213Analytic Geometry and Calculus III3
Total Credits11

Physics Courses

PHYS 160University Physics I (Mason Core)3
PHYS 161University Physics I Laboratory (Mason Core)1
PHYS 260University Physics II (Mason Core)3
PHYS 261University Physics II Laboratory (Mason Core)1
Total Credits8

Additional Science Courses

Choose 12 credits from the following:12
Undergraduate Research
Synthetic and Mechanistic Organic Chemistry
Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis
Instrumental Methods of Chemical Analysis Laboratory
Special Projects in Chemistry
General Biochemistry I
Biochemistry Lab
Solid State Chemistry
Fundamentals of Nanoscience and Nanomaterials
Biomaterials
Material Science
Total Credits12

Mason Core and Elective Credits

In order to meet a minimum of 120 credits, this degree requires additional credits (specific credit counts by concentration are shown below), which may be applied toward any remaining Mason Core requirements (outlined below), Requirements for Bachelor's Degrees, and electives. Students are strongly encouraged to consult with their advisors to ensure that they fulfill all requirements.

  • Without concentration: 49 credits
  • Environmental concentration: 33-35 credits
  • Analytical concentration: 43 credits
  • Biochemistry concentration: 48 credits
  • Materials Chemistry concentration: 49 credits

Mason Core

Some Mason Core requirements may already be fulfilled by the major requirements listed above. Students are strongly encouraged to consult their advisors to ensure they fulfill all remaining Mason Core requirements.

Foundation Requirements
Written Communication (ENGH 101)3
Oral Communication3
Quantitative Reasoning3
Information Technology and Computing3
Exploration Requirements
Arts3
Global Understanding3
Literature3
Natural Science7
Social and Behavioral Sciences3
Western Civilization/World History3
Integration Requirements
Written Communications (ENGH 302)3
Writing-Intensive 13
Synthesis/Capstone 23
Total Credits40

Honors in the Major

Chemistry majors who have completed prerequisites for CHEM 455 Honors Research in Chemistry and CHEM 456 Honors Research in Chemistry and have maintained an overall GPA of at least 3.00 in mathematics and science courses are eligible to enter the departmental honors program. To graduate with honors in chemistry, a student is required to maintain a minimum GPA of 3.00 in mathematics and science courses and successfully complete the two semesters of CHEM 455 Honors Research in Chemistry and CHEM 456 Honors Research in Chemistry with a minimum GPA of 3.50.

In order to apply for Chemistry Honors, please complete the application and submit it to the undergraduate coordinator.

Chemistry, BA or BS/Curriculum and Instruction, Accelerated MEd (Secondary Education Chemistry Concentration) 

Overview

Highly-qualified undergraduates may be admitted to the bachelor's/accelerated master's option and obtain a BA or BS in Chemistry (degree without concentration) and an MEd in Curriculum and Instruction (Secondary Education Chemistry concentration) in an accelerated time-frame after satisfactory completion of a minimum of 143 credits. 

See AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degree for policies related to this program.

This accelerated option is offered jointly by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and the School of Education.

Students in an accelerated degree program must fulfill all university requirements for the master's degree. For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies.

BAM Pathway Admission Requirements

Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for graduate study as specified in Graduate Admissions Policies and Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degree policies. For information specific to this accelerated master's program, see Application Requirements and Deadlines.

Students will be considered for admission into the BAM Pathway after completion of a minimum of 60 credits, and additional unit-specific criteria.

Students who are accepted into the BAM Pathway will be allowed to register for graduate level courses after successful completion of a minimum of 75 undergraduate credits and course-specific pre-requisites.

Accelerated Master’s Admission Requirements

Students already admitted in the BAM Pathway will be admitted to the MEd program, if they have met the following criteria, as verified on the Bachelor’s/Accelerated Master’s Transition form:

  • 3.0 overall GPA                                                      
  • Completion of specific undergraduate coursework          
  • Successfully meeting Mason’s requirements for undergraduate degree conferral (graduation) and completing the application for graduation. 

Accelerated Pathway Requirements

To maintain the integrity and quality of both the undergraduate and graduate degree programs, undergraduate students interested in taking graduate courses must choose from the following which can be taken as Advanced Standing or Reserve Graduate credit (to be determined by the student and their advisor):

EDRD 619Literacy in the Content Areas3
EDUC 547Scientific Inquiry and the Nature of Science3
SEED 522Foundations of Secondary Education3
SEED 540Human Development and Learning: Secondary Education3
SEED 573Teaching Science in the Secondary School3
SEED 673Advanced Methods of Teaching Science in the Secondary School3
SEED approved elective

For more detailed information on coursework and timeline requirements, see AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degree policies. 

Chemistry, BS/Chemistry, Accelerated MS

Overview

This bachelor's/accelerated master's degree program allows academically strong undergraduates with a commitment to advance their education to obtain both the Chemistry, BS and the Chemistry, MS degrees within an accelerated timeframe. Upon completion of this 138 credit accelerated program, students will be exceptionally well prepared for entry into their careers or into a doctoral program in the field or in a related discipline.

Students are eligible to apply for this accelerated program once they have earned at least 60 undergraduate credits. They will be able to enroll in up to 18 credits of graduate coursework after successfully completing 75 undergraduate credits. This flexibility makes it possible for students to complete a bachelor's and a master's in five years.

For more detailed information, see AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees. For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies. For more information on undergraduates enrolling in graduate courses, see AP.1.4.4 Graduate Course Enrollment by Undergraduates.

Application Requirements

Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for graduate study as specified in the Graduate Admission Policies section of this catalog.

Important application information and processes for this accelerated master's program can be found here.

Students should seek out the graduate program's advisor who will aid in choosing the appropriate graduate courses and help prepare the student for graduate studies.

Successful applicants will have earned 60 undergraduate credits and have an overall GPA of at least 3.00. Additionally, they will have completed 36 credits of CHEM courses with a GPA of at least 3.00.

Accelerated Option Requirements

After the completion of 75 undergraduate credits, students may complete 3 to 12 credits of graduate coursework that can apply to both the undergraduate and graduate degrees.

In addition to applying to graduate from the undergraduate program, students in the accelerated program must submit a bachelor's/accelerated master's transition form (available from the Office of the University Registrar) to the College of Science's Office of Academic and Student Affairs by the last day to add classes of their final undergraduate semester. Students should enroll for courses in the master's program in the fall or spring semester immediately following conferral of the bachelor's degree, but should contact an advisor if they would like to defer up to one semester.

Students must maintain an overall GPA of 3.00 or higher in all graduate coursework and should consult with their faculty advisor to coordinate their academic goals.

Reserve Graduate Credit

Accelerated master's students may also take up to 6 graduate credits as reserve graduate credits. These credits do not apply to the undergraduate degree, but will reduce the master's degree by up to 6 credits. With 12 graduate credits counted toward the undergraduate degree plus the maximum 6 reserve graduate credits, the credits necessary for the graduate degree can be reduced by up to 18.

Graduate Course Suggestions

The following list of suggested courses is provided for general reference. To ensure an efficient route to graduation and post-graduation readiness, students are strongly encouraged to meet with an advisor before registering for graduate-level courses.

Chemical Thermodynamics and Kinetics 1
For Students Interested in the Environmental Sciences
Aquatic Environmental Chemistry
Environmental Chemistry of Organic Substances
For Students Interested in Biochemistry
The Chemistry of Enzyme-Catalyzed Reactions
Protein Biochemistry
For Students Interested in Organic Chemistry
Bioorganic Chemistry
Modern Polymer Chemistry
Physical Organic Chemistry
For Students Interested in Inorganic Chemistry
Solid State Chemistry
Bioinorganic Chemistry
For Students Interested in Analytical Chemistry
Principles of Chemical Separation
Electroanalytical Chemistry
For Students Interested in Materials Science
Fundamentals of Nanoscience and Nanomaterials

Bachelor's Degree (selected), Bioinformatics Management, Accelerated PSM

Overview

This bachelor's/accelerated master's degree program allows academically strong undergraduates with a commitment to advance their education to obtain both the Biology, BS, or the Chemistry, BS, or the Computational and Data Sciences, BS, or the Physics, BS, or the Neuroscience, BS and the Bioinformatics Management, PSM degrees within an accelerated timeframe. Upon completion of this 138 credit accelerated program, students will be exceptionally well prepared for entry into their careers or into a doctoral program in the field or in a related discipline.

Students are eligible to apply for this accelerated program once they have earned at least 60 undergraduate credits and can enroll in up to 18 credits of graduate coursework after successfully completing 75 undergraduate credits. This flexibility makes it possible for students to complete a bachelor's and a master's in five years.

For more detailed information, see AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees. For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies. For more information on undergraduates enrolling in graduate courses, see AP.1.4.4 Graduate Course Enrollment by Undergraduates.

Application Requirements

Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for graduate study as specified in the Graduate Admission Policies section of this catalog.

Important application information and processes for this accelerated master's program can be found here.

Students in the Biology, BS; Chemistry, BS; Computational and Data Sciences, BS; Neuroscience, BS; or Physics, BS with an overall GPA of at least 3.00 in their last 60 credits are welcome to apply to the Bioinformatics Management, PSM accelerated master's program. Applicants to this accelerated master's should have previously taken courses in molecular biology, computer science, calculus, physical chemistry, and statistics. Students with deficiencies in one or more of these areas may be required to take additional courses from the undergraduate curriculum.

The GRE requirement is waived for students accepted into this accelerated program.

Students should seek out the graduate program's advisor who will aid in choosing the appropriate graduate courses and help prepare the student for graduate studies.

Accelerated Option Requirements

After the completion of 75 undergraduate credits, students may complete 3 to 12 credits of graduate coursework that can apply to both the undergraduate and graduate degrees.

In addition to applying to graduate from the undergraduate program, students in the accelerated program must submit a bachelor's/accelerated master's transition form (available from the Office of the University Registrar) to the College of Science's Office of Academic and Student Affairs by the last day to add classes of their final undergraduate semester. Students should enroll for courses in the master's program in the fall or spring semester immediately following conferral of the bachelor's degree, but should contact an advisor if they would like to defer up to one semester.

Students must maintain an overall GPA of 3.00 or higher in all graduate coursework and should consult with their faculty advisor to coordinate their academic goals.

Reserve Graduate Credits

Accelerated master's students may also take up to 6 graduate credits as reserve graduate credits. These credits do not apply to the undergraduate degree, but will reduce the master's degree by up to 6 credits. With 12 graduate credits counted toward the undergraduate degree plus the maximum 6 reserve graduate credits, the credits necessary for the graduate degree can be reduced by up to 18.

Graduate Course Suggestions

The following list of suggested courses is provided for general reference. To ensure an efficient route to graduation and post-graduation readiness, students are strongly encouraged to meet with an advisor before registering for graduate-level courses.

BINF 630Bioinformatics Methods3
BINF 631Molecular Cell Biology for Bioinformatics3
BINF 702Biological Data Analysis3
GBUS 738Data Mining for Business Analytics3
or MBA 738 Data Mining for Business Analytics