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Students who complete the major in chemistry are expected to achieve an understanding of the basic principles of chemistry and master problem-solving skills, chemical literature skills, laboratory safety skills, communication skills, team skills, and ethics. These program learning outcomes are in line with the guidelines for bachelor’s degree programs in chemistry set forth by the American Chemical Society.
Students are expected to be able to do the following:
- Demonstrate factual and theoretical knowledge of our present understanding of the physical world and the atoms and molecules that comprise it, including an understanding of the fundamental concepts underpinning organic, inorganic, physical, analytical, and biochemistry;
- Understand the important role of chemistry as the central science and the integration of chemistry with the physical sciences, the life sciences, mathematics, and engineering;
- Conduct laboratory experiments effectively and safely by understanding and applying the concepts of safe laboratory practices, including responsible disposal techniques, use of material safety data sheets (MSDS), recognizing and minimizing potential hazards, and handling emergencies effectively;
- Solve problems through defining a problem clearly, forming testable hypotheses, designing and executing experiments, analyzing data, and drawing appropriate conclusions;
- Search and use the peer-reviewed scientific literature effectively and evaluate papers and other media critically;
- Demonstrate effective communication in oral and written form and be able to present information in a clear and organized manner, write concise reports, and use technology, such as presentation, word processing, and structure-drawing software;
- Work effectively in a multidisciplinary team to solve scientific problems; and
- Practice ethics and conduct themselves responsibly with an awareness of the role of chemistry in contemporary social and global issues.