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Honours Chemistry

Undergraduate Chemistry Honours (B.Sc.)

The Honours Chemistry Program was revised in 2006, and features a new line up of courses, and very flexible scheduling across all fours years.  The program provides a strong background in chemistry, and allowing students to pursue interests in various areas of science, including biology, physics, math, earth sciences and computer science.

We offer students courses and laboratory experience in the four general sub-disciplines of chemistry:

  • Organic/Polymer Chemistry
  • Physical chemistry
  • Inorganic/Materials chemistry
  • Analytical Chemistry

Expertise in all of these sub-disciplines are important for careers as chemists, research scientists, forensic scientists, environmental chemists and consultants, laboratory technicians, chemical educators, and a wide variety of careers. We require our students to obtain some experience with biological, organic and inorganic molecules, as well as their physical properties, during the course of their degree. More about these areas of chemistry can be found on our Chemistry FAQ page.

First Year - Exposure to general science courses

The first year is very flexible: (10 courses all together).  All first year Chemistry students must take:

  • two chemistry courses (59-140 and 59-141)
  • two physics courses (64-140 and 64-141)
  • two calculus courses (62-140 and 62-141)
  • There are then four optional slots to fill in:
  (i) students interested in biochemistry may elect to fill two of these slots with introductory biology courses
  (ii) students interested in physics or pure chemistry may elect to take other math or computer science options (e.g., 62-120, 60-106, etc.).
  (iii) students may also wish to take other science (e.g., earth science courses) and arts electives
  (iv) two slots of these four should be used to take courses in arts, social sciences, languages or some other area of interest.

Second Year - Introduction to the Sub-Disciplines of Chemistry

The second year focuses upon general introduction to the major sub-divisions in Chemistry: (10 courses all together).  Second year Chemistry students generally take courses in:

  • organic chemistry (59-230 and 59-235),
  • physical chemistry (59-240 and 59-241),
  • inorganic chemistry (59-250 and 59-251)
  • two other optional slots are to be used for filling in a selection of courses from math (62-120, 62-215, 62-216), physics (64-220, 64-222) or computer science (60-106)
  • there are two remaining slots for the student to take courses in arts, social sciences, languages or some other area of interest.

Third & Fourth Years - Senior Courses and Specialization

Advanced-level Honours Chemistry offerings (59-3xx and 59-4xx) are spread over the third and fourth years: (20 courses all together).

  • The third year Chemistry courses include a thorough introduction to analytical chemistry (59-320) and instrumental analysis (59-321).
  • Students are expected to take one third year course in each major sub-division of chemistry: 59-330 (Spectroscopic Characterization of Molecules, organic), 59-340 (Quantum Chemistry, physical) and 59-350 (Organometallic Chemistry, inorganic).
  • Students may choose a track in which they take senior honours level courses in:
    • Organic Chemistry: 59-331: Intermediate Organic Chemistry II, 59-431: Advanced Organic Chemistry
    • Physical Chemistry: 59-440: Photochemistry & Kinetics, 59-441: Statistical Mechanics, 59-445: Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, 59-470: Applied Computational Chemistry
    • Inorganic Chemistry: 59-351: Materials Chemistry, 59-452: Advanced Main Group Chemistry
    • Students may also get permission to participate in graduate level courses covering a variety of topics.
    • Students must finish remaining optional courses, and must also take a course in Organic Biomolecules (59-261).

Honours Research Project: 59-410

Students who have a GPA of 8.0 or greater have the opportunity to participate in the Honours Research Project (59-410), which allows them to participate in real research under the direct supervision of a faculty member. This course takes place over the entire year, and replaces two optional credits. It is an excellent experience, and provides the student with background in technical aspects of research, literature surveys, presentation of research projects, etc.

For a detailed comparison of our old program and new program, please click here for the PDF file (the new program is listed in the right hand column). Plan your courses with our planning guide (which includes a sample planner for a typical third year chemistry student).

The information above is intended as a guide - the official program outlines in the University Calendar are the official source of program and course information.