Major Requirements

Chemistry Major Requirements

General 

The department offers programs leading to the BA and BS degrees in chemistry. The BS degrees are certified by the American Chemical Society. A minimum GPA of 2.0 in the first two years of chemistry is required of students who elect to major in the department. Admission to any class is contingent upon satisfactory grades in prerequisite courses, and registration for advanced courses must be approved by the department. Candidates for either the BA or BS degree with a major in chemistry must have a minimum GPA of 2.0 in their chemistry courses numbered 200 or above. Unless otherwise stated, all chemistry courses are open to chemistry majors and minors on a letter-grade basis only (even those courses not required for the major or minor). Majors are required to complete on a letter-grade basis the required physics, biology, and mathematics courses. The BS programs are designed for those students who plan a career in chemistry at the bachelor or advanced degree level. The BA program is designed for those students who do not plan to do graduate work in the physical sciences but desire a stronger background in chemistry than is provided by the chemistry minor program.

The department will accept transfer courses completed at four-year colleges and universities but will not award transfer credit towards the chemistry major and minor except from schools offering a major in chemistry. These courses must be equivalent in content and level to courses offered at Wake Forest (as judged by the department). Transfer credit will not be awarded for online lab classes nor for online lecture courses that have co-requisite labs on our campus. Courses taken in summer school elsewhere, or in study abroad programs, must meet these same criteria and receive pre-approval. Advanced courses, 300-level and above, are typically not transferable. Students enrolled at Wake Forest may not take courses in chemistry at other institutions to satisfy divisional requirements.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry 

The bachelor of science degree in chemistry requires 43-45 hours in chemistry and must include the following courses: 111, 111L, 122 or 123,122L or 123L, 223, 223L, 280, 280L, 334, 334L, 341, 341L, 342, 342L, 361, 361L, 370, 370L or 371L, 381, 382; also 390 or no fewer than 1.5h for 391 and/or 392; two of the following courses: 351, 364, 366, 373, or any chemistry graduate class (POI); also PHY 111 or 113, and 114; MTH 111, 112, 205 (or MTH 113 and 121 in place of MTH 205).

For the BS major, the following schedule of chemistry and related courses is typical:

First Year: CHM 111, 111L, 122, 122L (or 123, 123L); MTH 111, 112

Sophomore: CHM 223, 223L, 280, 280L; PHY 111 or 113, 114; MTH 205 (or MTH 113 and 121 in place of MTH 205).

Junior: CHM 341, 341L, 342, 342L, 381, 382, 391 (or 392 or 390), upper-level CHM elective

Senior: CHM 334, 334L, 361, 361L, 370, 370L or 371L, upper-level CHM elective

Variations in the schedules above are possible to accommodate study abroad and other special circumstances, in which case, the student should consult a member of the faculty in chemistry.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry with Concentration in Biochemistry 

The bachelor of science degree in chemistry with concentration in biochemistry requires 39.5-41 hours in chemistry and must include the following courses: 111, 111L, 122 or 123, 122L or 123L, 223, 223L, 280, 280L, 334, 334L, 341, 341L, 361, 361L, 370, 371L, 373, 381, 382; also 390 or no fewer than 1.5h for 391 and/or 392; one of the following courses: 342, 351, 364, 366, or any chemistry graduate class (POI); also BIO 213, 214; MTH 111, 112; and PHY 111 or 113, and 114.

For the BS major with concentration in biochemistry, the following schedule of chemistry and related courses is typical:

First Year: BIO 114; CHM 111, 111L, 122, 122L (or 123, 123L); MTH 111, 112

Sophomore: BIO 213, 214; CHM 223, 223L, 280, 280L; PHY 111 or 113, 114

Junior: CHM 341, 341L, 370, 371L, 381, 382, 391 (or 392 or 390)

Senior: CHM 334, 334L, 361, 361L, 373, upper-level CHM elective

Variations in the schedules above are possible to accommodate study abroad and other special circumstances, in which case, the student should consult a member of the faculty in chemistry.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry with Concentration in Materials Chemistry

The bachelor of science degree in chemistry with concentration in materials chemistry requires 40-45 hours in chemistry and must include the following courses: 111, 111L, 122 or 123, 122L or 123L, 280, 280L, 334, 334L, 341, 341L, 342, 342L, 361, 361L, 364, 364L, 370, 370L or 371L, 381, 382; also 390 or no fewer than 1.5h for 391 and/or 392; two of the following courses: 223, 351, 366, PHY 354; also PHY 111 or 113, and 114; MTH 111, 112, 205 (or MTH 113 and 121 in place of MTH 205).

For the BS major with concentration in materials chemistry, the following schedule of chemistry and related courses is typical:

First Year: CHM 111, 111L, 122, 122L (or 123, 123L); MTH 111, 112

Sophomore: CHM 280, 280L; 223 (elective); PHY 111 or 113, 114; MTH 205 (or MTH 113 and 121 in place of MTH 205).

Junior: CHM 341, 341L, 342, 342L, 364, 364L, 381, 382, 391 (or 392 or 390)

Senior: CHM 334, 334L, 361, 361L, 370, 370L or 371L, upper-level CHM or PHY elective

Variations in the schedules above are possible to accommodate study abroad and other special circumstances, in which case, the student should consult a member of the faculty in chemistry.

The Bachelor of Arts Degree in Chemistry

The bachelor of arts degree in chemistry requires a minimum of 34 hours in chemistry and must include the following courses: 111, 111L, 122 or 123, 122L or 123L, 280, 280L, 334, 334L, 341, 341L, 361, 361L, 370, 370L or 371L; two of the following courses: 223, 342, 351, 364, 366, or 373; one of 381, 382, 390, 391, or 392; also MTH 111, 112; and PHY 111 or 113, and 114.

For the BA major, the following schedule of chemistry and related courses is typical:

First Year: CHM 111, 111L, 122, 122L (or 123, 123L); MTH 111, 112

Sophomore: CHM 280, 280L; one upper-level CHM elective; PHY 111 or 113, 114

Junior: CHM 341, 341L, 370, 370L or 371L, one of CHM 381, 382, 390, 391, or 392

Senior: CHM 334, 334L, 361, 361L, and upper-level CHM elective

Variations in the schedules above are possible to accommodate study abroad and other special circumstances, in which case, the student should consult a member of the faculty in chemistry.

Minor, Honors, and Health Professions Program 

A minor in chemistry requires at least 19 hours in chemistry and must include at least one of: 334, 341, 342, 351, 361, 364, 366, 370, or 373. No more than 9 hours of chemistry courses completed elsewhere can be counted toward the minor, and a minimum grade point average of 2.0 in Wake Forest chemistry courses is required to complete the minor.

Honors. Qualified majors are considered for honors in chemistry. To be graduated with the designation “Honors in Chemistry,” a student must have a minimum GPA in chemistry courses of 3.3 and a minimum overall GPA of 3.0. In addition, the honors candidate must satisfactorily complete an approved research project, prepare a thesis describing the project, and defend the thesis before their Honors Committee. Honors thesis research must be conducted on the Wake Forest University campus with a WFU Chemistry faculty member as research adviser or co-adviser.  For additional information, the Honors Coordinator (Dr. Lindsay Comstock) should be consulted.

The Health Professions Program at Wake Forest recommends that students take the following chemistry courses and their associated labs before the end of the third year: 111, 122 or 123, 223, 280. Students interested in this track should see the Health Professions Program adviser for more information.

Course Listings

Course listings specify prerequisites and corequisites, although admission by permission of instructor, POI, may be granted under special circumstances.

108. Everyday Chemistry. (4h) Introduces chemistry to non-science majors. Lab covers experimental aspects of topics discussed in lecture. Does not count towards the major or minor in chemistry. Lab—2 hours. (D, QR)

*111. College Chemistry I. (3h) Fundamental chemical principles. Also offered in Salamanca. C—CHM 111L. (D, QR)

*111L. College Chemistry I Lab. (1h) Covers experimental aspects of basic concepts. Lab—3 hours. C—CHM 111.

120. Physics and Chemistry of the Environment. (4h) Covers the basic physical and chemical pro­cesses in the earth’s atmosphere, biosphere and the oceans. Consists of two parts: 1) chemical processes in the environment such as element cycles and the chemistry of the pollutants in air and water and, 2) physical aspects of the environment such as solar energy and the atmosphere, and the physics of weather and climate. Lab—3 hours. Also listed as PHY 120. (D, QR)

*122. Organic Chemistry I. (3h) Principles and reactions of organic chemistry. Students may not receive credit for both CHM 122 and CHM 123. P—CHM 111. C—CHM 122L. (D)

*122L. Organic Chemistry I Lab. (1h) Lab—4 hours. P—CHM 111. C—CHM 122.

*123. Organic Chemistry I Honors. (3h) Principles and reactions of organic chemistry. Freshmen only, by invitation. P—CHM 111. C—CHM 123L. (D)

*123L. Organic Chemistry I Honors Lab. (1h) Lab—4 hours. P—CHM 111. C—CHM 123.

223. Organic Chemistry II. (3h) Principles and reactions of organic chemistry and introductory biochemistry. P—CHM 122 or 123.

223L. Organic Chemistry II Lab. (1h) Lab—4 hours. P—CHM 122 or 123. P or C—CHM 223.

280. College Chemistry II. (3h) Advanced study of fundamental chemical principles. P—CHM 111.

280L. Theory and Methods of Quantitative Analysis Lab. (1h) Emphasizes technique development for accuracy and precision. Lab—4 hours. C or P—CHM 280.

301, 302. Elective Research. (0h, 0h) P—POI.

311. Current Topics. (1-4h) Course exploring current topics in chemistry. May be repeated for credit if course content differs. Does not count toward the major or minor in chemistry. P−POI.

334. Chemical Analysis. (4h) Theoretical and practical applications of modern methods of chemical analysis. Lab—4 hours (CHM 334L). P—CHM 280L.

*341. Physical Chemistry I. (3h) Fundamentals of thermodynamics and phenomenological kinetics, and introductory computational methods. Also offered in Salamanca. P—CHM 280, PHY 114. 
P or C—MTH 112.

*341L. Physical Chemistry I Lab. (1h) Lab—4 hours. P—CHM 280L, PHY 114. P or C —CHM 341, MTH 112.

342. Physical Chemistry II. (3h) Fundamentals of quantum mechanics, statistical thermo-dynamics, and introductory computational methods. P—CHM 341, MTH 112, and PHY 114.  P or C __MTH 205 (or MTH 113 and 121 in place of MTH 205).

342L. Physical Chemistry II Lab. (1h) Lab—4 hours. P—CHM 280L, CHM 341, MTH 112, and PHY 114. P or C—CHM 342.

351. Special Topics in Chemistry. (3h) Courses in selected special topics in chemistry. May be repeated for credit if course content differs. P—POI.

*361. Inorganic Chemistry. (3h) Principles and reactions of inorganic chemistry. P—CHM 341. 
C—CHM 361L.

*361L. Inorganic Chemistry Lab. (1h) Lab—4 hours. P—CHM 280L, CHM 341. C—CHM 361.

364. Materials Chemistry. (3h) A survey of inorganic-, organic-, bio-, and nano-materials, including hybrid materials and applications. P—CHM 341.

364L. Materials Chemistry Lab. (1h) Synthesis of inorganic and organic based materials and their characterization. Lab—4 hours. P—CHM 280L. P or C—CHM 364.

366. Chemistry and Physics of Solid State Materials. (3h) Design, synthesis, structure, chemical and physical properties, and the application of solid state materials. P—CHM 280.

370. Biochemistry: Macromolecules and Metabolism. (3h) Lecture course introducing the principles of biochemistry including structure, function, and biosynthesis of biological molecules, analysis of enzyme function and activity, bioenergetics, and regulation of metabolic pathways. Also listed as BIO 370. Also offered in Salamanca. P—CHM 223 or CHM 280 or BIO 214.

370L. Biochemistry Lab. (1h) Overview of biochemical approaches to study structure and function of macromolecules. Does not count towards the chemistry major with concentration in biochemistry. This course is recommended for pre-health students. Also listed as BIO 370L. Credit allowed for CHM/BIO 370L or CHM/BIO 371L, but not both. Lab—3 hr. P—CHM 223 or CHM 280 or BIO 214. P or C—CHM/BIO 370.

371L. Advanced Biochemistry Lab. (1.5h) Emphasizes approaches for isolation and analysis of enzymes.  Required for the chemistry major with concentration in biochemistry and recommended for research focused students. Also listed as BIO 371L. Credit allowed for CHM/BIO 371L or CHM/BIO 370L, but not both. Lab—4 hr. P—CHM 223 or CHM 280 or BIO 214. P or C—CHM/BIO 370.

373. Biochemistry: Protein and Nucleic Acid Structure and Function. (3h) Special topics in biochemistry, including catalytic mechanisms of enzymes and ribozymes, use of sequence and structure databases, and molecular basis of disease and drug action. P—CHM 223 and 370 (or BIO 370).

381, 382. Chemistry Seminar and Literature. (.5h, .5h) Discussions of contemporary research and introduction to the chemical literature and acquisition of chemical information. Can be taken in any order. Pass/Fail only. P—CHM 122 or 123.

390. Chemical Research Experience. (0 or 1.5h) Research experience and written report. Requires pre-approval of research project conducted off the Reynolda campus, by prearrangement. Pass/Fail only. May be repeated for credit.

391, 392. Undergraduate Research. (0.5-3h) Undergraduate research and written report. 
Lab—3-16 hours. May be repeated for credit. P—POI.

* The lecture and corresponding lab are strict corequisites of each other. A student must register for both during the same semester. (However, either can be repeated independently if warranted.)