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Degree Programs

Candidates must fulfill the requirements of the College of Graduate Studies and of the Department of Chemistry.

Master of Science

(A) Thesis option: General M.S. requirements apply. At least one credit must be earned in Chem 501.
(B) Nonthesis option: A minimum of 30 credits in course work is required and must be divided among the following:

  1. 20 credits in chemistry courses numbered 500 or above (including one credit in Chem 501);
  2. 10 credits in chemistry courses numbered 400 or above, or related courses numbered 300 or above.
  3. A written and/or oral examination that covers graduate course work must be taken during the final semester in residence.

Doctor of Philosophy - Major in Chemistry

The student will enroll for at least 33 credit hours in courses. All students will take Chem 509 (Advanced Physical Chemistry) and obtain two credits in Chem 501 (Seminar). In addition, sufficient credit hours of research will be completed to meet a total minimum registration requirement of 78 credits.

The student is encouraged to take courses in related fields, e.g., mathematics, physics, chemical engineering, geochemistry, computer science, electronics, or biochemistry. This work can be designated as the minor or supporting field on the study program.

All Ph.D. candidates are required to participate in seminar (Chem 511) while in residence, even though not formally registered for credit in this course. Registration may be for zero credit.

Comprehensive exams (“comps”) are a series of four examinations in a candidate’s field of specialization, designed to judge their breadth of knowledge gained from courses, lectures, and  literature. PhD candidates are required to take the comps, which are administered over a period of two weeks, at the end of their third semester in the program. Extensive choices are offered in the subject matter covered by each comp, and students are encouraged to make their selections in consultation with their major professor. Students must obtain an average grade of 50% in the four comps to continue in the Ph.D. program.

Shortly after completing the comps, Ph.D. students are required to submit a written proposal on their doctoral research project and defend it at an oral examination by their graduate committee (Chem 590). The proposal is limited to 5,000 words, excluding the bibliography, and consists of a statement of the proposed doctoral research problem, an in-depth discussion of the relevant literature, a listing of the major research objectives, a summary of the proposed experimental work plan, and an appropriate bibliography.


Department of Chemistry

Physical Address:
Renfrew Hall 116

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Dr, MS 2343
Moscow, ID 83844-2343

Phone: 208-885-6552

Fax: 208-885-6173


Web: Department of Chemistry