Master's in Chemistry Degrees
Masters in Chemistry programs typically award a Master of Science (MS) degree and offer students an advanced postgraduate education in the major branches of the Chemical Sciences.
Students may be able to focus their masters degree in chemistry on areas such as organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, physical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, materials science, and biochemistry. They may also be able to concentrate on key industries, such as pharmaceutical chemistry.
Master chemistry programs often seek to cultivating students’ proficiency in conducting specialized laboratory research. This may prepares students to purse a variety of potential careers in chemistry research, development, education, and administration, or for advanced study at the doctoral level.
The Basics of Chemistry Masters Programs
Masters in Chemistry programs are typically two year, 30 credit graduate programs that combine classroom learning with independent research. Many students choose to earn the masters degree in chemistry as preparation to pursue a PhD, which is widely considered the prequisite degree to become a professional chemist. For these students, a key component to earning this masters in chemistry degree is the completion of a thesis.
There are also graduate chemistry schools that offer programs with non-thesis options. These may be designed to provide students with the skills they might need for leadership positions and culminate in a final project. Students enrolled in a course-based M.S. program take more courses, than do students in a thesis master chemistry program.
Popular Chemistry Masters Programs
Master of Science in Chemistry
Master of Science in Chemistry: Pharmaceutical Chemistry
Masters in Polymer & Coatings
Masters in Chem-bioinformatics
Masters in Molecular Biochemistry
Those applying to Chemistry Masters programs often must hold an undergraduate degree in chemistry, or in some cases, chemical engineering. Some universities may accept an applicant with a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry as well. Many colleges also require that prospective students meet the minimum required GPA for coursework in chemistry and submit scores for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
MS Chemistry Potential Curriculum
Students enrolled in a course-based Chemistry MS program may take courses that cover the following topics.
- Advanced organic chemistry
- Advanced physical chemistry
- Advanced analytical chemistry
- Environmental chemistry
- Statistical methods
Courses in your masters in chemistry program may differ. Therefore it's important to read full course lists and contact an advisor to learn more.
Choosing a Masters in Chemistry Program: Online or On-Campus
Students might consider looking into programs that are approved by the American Chemical Society, whether they are looking for a general Masters program in Chemistry or one that allows them to pursue a specialization in a subfield, such as analytical chemistry, biochemistry, organic chemistry or inorganic chemistry, nanomaterials or polymer science. Accreditation may speak to the program's curriculum, faculty and more.
Another important search criteria is program format. Some Chemistry masters programs are laboratory intensive ones, so a campus program may make sense since you would have access to the university’s facilities. For busy working students, pursuing an online master in chemistry may be more convenient. You can initiate a search for chemistry masters programs on GradSchools.com by location; choose a city, state or country then browse the listings. Some of these options might include: Chemistry MS, and Chemistry PSM.
A relatively new type of degree, called the Professional Science Master’s (PSM), blends advanced training in a particular science field with business skills, such as communications and program management, and policy.[i]
Chemists: Job Outlook and Salary
Entry-level jobs for Chemists require a bachelor’s degree, however, a masters or PhD in Chemistry is required for many research and upper-management jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, with a slow employment growth rate expected between 2014 and 2024 (3%), Chemists with advanced degrees, particularly those with a Ph.D. and work experience, are expected to have better opportunities[ii].
Chemists are employed in many industries; research and development, the pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing industries, laboratories, government and basic chemical engineering.
In terms of salary expectations, the median annual wage for chemists was $73,480 in May 2014; the lowest 10 % earned less than $41,560, and the highest 10 % earned more than $126,220.[iii]
Other Potential Careers For Chemistry Masters Graduates
- Materials scientists
- Natural Sciences Managers
- Forensic Chemist
- Air Quality Chemist
- Agricultural or Food Scientist
Get Started With A Master of Science in Chemistry
Whether you are pursuing a master’s in chemistry as a portal to a PhD or to potentially increase your career prospects, the degree has many professional and vocational applications. Why not start browsing through the listings on GradSchools.com to find the program that aligns with your goals!
Sources: [i] bls.gov/ooh/management/natural-sciences-managers.htm [ii] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/chemists-and-materials-scientists.htm | onetonline.org/link/summary/19-2031.00 | [iii] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/chemists-and-materials-scientists.htm
- Iowa City, IAIowa City, IA
University of Iowa
The Department of Chemistry at The University of Iowa is seriously committed to providing its students with the skills needed to meet the chemical challenges of the 21st century. Students are provided with the resources and opportunities they need to gr...
- Fredericton, NBFredericton, NB
University of New Brunswick - Fredericton
Programs are offered leading to the degrees of M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Analytical, Bio-organic, Inorganic, Organic, Physical and Theoretical Chemistry. Candidates should possess a bachelor's degree in Chemistry of Biochemistry with a first or second division...
- Riverside, CARiverside, CA
University of California - Riverside
areas of interest: Analytical, Inorganic, Organic, Physical, Bioanalytical, Chemical Genomics, Environmental, Materials...
- Richmond, VARichmond, VA
Virginia Commonwealth University
The Department of Chemistry offers programs leading to the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The programs provide opportunities for concentrated study in analytical, inorganic, organic, or physical chemistry, or chemical physics and in...
- Miami, FLMiami, FL
University of Miami
- Chapel Hill, NCChapel Hill, NC
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Degree programs in Analytical, Biological, Inorganic, Organic, and Physical Chemistry. Cooperative research programs involving the UNC-CH Physics Department, the Microelectronics Center of North Carolina (MCNC), the Program in Molecular Biology and Biot...
- Wichita, KSWichita, KS
Wichita State University
- Indianapolis, INIndianapolis, IN
Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellowship, The
The Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship seeks to recruit, prepare and retain effective teachers for the students and schools who need them most. It is open to individuals - college seniors, recent graduates, and career changers - with undergraduate de...
- Indianapolis, IN
- West Lafayette, IN
- Muncie, IN
- Mayaguez, PRMayaguez, PR
University of Puerto Rico - Mayaguez
- Birmingham, ALBirmingham, AL
University of Alabama at Birmingham
The Graduate Program in Chemistry provides individualized training for students who desire to becomeprofessional chemists in academia, industry, or government. Research encompasses analytical, inorganic,organic, and physical chemistry, in addition to em...
- Nashville, GANashville, GA
- Macomb, ILMacomb, IL
Western Illinois University
- Aberdeen, United KingdomAberdeen, United Kingdom
University of Aberdeen
This programme will equip you for a career in the profession of Chemistry, through training in advanced chemical research techniques (lectures, laboratory training, workshops and tutorials) and undertaking an independent research project. The progra...
- Aberdeen, United Kingdom
- Missoula, MTMissoula, MT
University of Montana
- Philadelphia, PAPhiladelphia, PA
University of the Sciences
Provided through the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, USP offers both master's and doctoral degrees in chemistry, biochemistry, and pharmacognosy. The program allows students to specialize in analytical, inorganic, organic, computational or phy...
- Philadelphia, PA
- Bristol, United KingdomBristol, United Kingdom
University of the West of England, Bristol
The University of the West of England is recognized nationally and internationally as one of the leading centers for education in the Biomedical Sciences. The Department of Biological and Biomedical Sciences has recently been reviewed by the Quality Ass...
- Waterloo, QCWaterloo, QC
University of Waterloo
At the Guelph-Waterloo Centre for Graduate Work in Chemistry, we offer the highest calibre of opportunities in each of these areas. The enthusiasm and dedication of our faculty make the Centre one of the leading institutions for graduate education in ch...
- Middletown, CTMiddletown, CT
Emphasis within the program is on developing skills for chemical research, rather than on passing a specified number of examinations.
- Berlin, GermanyBerlin, Germany
- Tallahassee, FLTallahassee, FL
Florida A And M University / Florida State University
- Nashville, TNNashville, TN
Fisk University, which opened its doors as Fisk School to a student body of former slaves in1866, is a small, predominantly African American instituti...
- Lancaster, United KingdomLancaster, United Kingdom
University of Lancaster
This course has a very flexible scheme of study emphasising the problem-solving role of the analyst. The course can be taken full-time or in several part-time ways, tailored to fit in with the student's working week.Students undertake a series of projec...
- Seattle, WASeattle, WA
University of Washington
research areas:Analytical; Biochemical; Bioinorganic; Bioorganic; Biophysical; Environmental; Inorganic; Medicinal; Nuclear; Organic; Organometallic; Physical; Polymer; Process Analytical; Theoretical...
- North York, ONNorth York, ON
Program focuses on a wide range of study and research in all of the traditional areas of analytical, biological, inorganic, organic, physical and theoretical chemistry with specialization available in atmospheric chemistry, mass spectrometry, gas phase...
- Tulsa, OKTulsa, OK
University of Tulsa
The Master's degree program in Chemistry provides graduates with the broad knowledge and skills necessary for those who will use their training in ind...