*T. K. Hemscheidt, PhD (Chair)—organic and bioorganic chemistry,
biosynthesis of natural products
Cooperating Graduate Faculty
C. J. Simmons, PhD—inorganic chemistry, metal-dioxygen and Jahn-Teller copper complexes, structure determination by X-ray crystallography
Degrees Offered: BA (including minor) in chemistry, BS in chemistry, MS in chemistry, PhD in chemistry
The Academic Program
Chemistry (CHEM) stands at the crossroads between physics and biology. As biological processes are examined in ever finer detail, chemistry is increasingly called upon to provide the insights, techniques, and materials needed to understand the workings of living organisms, including ourselves. Chemistry is thus a popular major for those interested in biomedical careers. In another direction, chemistry is also essential to the search for solutions to the ecological problems created by the ever-expanding range of human activities. Chemists create new substances with new properties that find application throughout our civilization.
As a major, chemistry provides a solid foundation of scientific knowledge and experimental skills that enables one to specialize in many directions toward careers in research, teaching, business, or professional practice. Also, because virtually all constructed things we see and use in our daily lives involve chemistry, there is a huge pool of jobs for chemists in the manufacturing industries.
The department offers MS and PhD research and study opportunities in inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry, with specialized research opportunities in geochemistry and marine-related chemistry.
Intended candidates for the MS or PhD must present the minimum undergraduate preparation in general, organic, analytical, and physical chemistry courses. Foreign applicants for the MS and the PhD must take the GRE General Test.
Graduate study in chemistry consists of course work, independent study, teaching, and research. A thesis or dissertation based on original research is the most important part of the master’s or doctoral degree respectively. Candidates for advanced degrees are required to serve as teaching assistants for a portion of their program.
Additional details concerning MS and PhD degree requirements, as well as assistantships available to prospective students, are outlined in brochures available upon request from the department.
The candidate for the MS in chemistry (Plan A only) is granted 12 credit hours for an acceptable thesis. The remaining 18 credit hours must be selected from acceptable graduate courses in chemistry (listed in this Catalog) or from graduate offerings in mathematics and the natural sciences. Required courses are CHEM 691 or 692, and 700.
Doctoral candidates must complete a minimum of six semesters of graduate study of which at least three semesters must be in residence at UH Manoa. Courses are selected from acceptable graduate courses in chemistry listed in this Catalog and from graduate offerings in related disciplines as directed by the faculty. Candidates must demonstrate mastery of core material in graduate courses in their chosen areas. Each candidate must pass a comprehensive oral examination consisting of the defense of an original research proposal written by the candidate and a résumé of the candidate’s dissertation research and its current status.
The most important requirement for the PhD degree is the research project that culminates in the dissertation. Prior to beginning the second semester of study, each candidate selects one member of the chemistry graduate faculty to serve as his or her research director. The research director works with the candidate throughout his or her program and chairs the candidate’s dissertation committee.
More information about the chemistry department and its programs can be found on its website.
Please note: This Catalog was prepared to provide information and does not constitute a contract. The University reserves the right to change or delete, supplement or otherwise amend at any time and without prior notice the information, requirements and policies contained in this Catalog.
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