Jeffrey Cardon (chair), Charles Liberko, Brian Nowak-Thompson, Jai Shanata, Cynthia Strong, Craig Teague

The Department of Chemistry has been approved by the American Chemical Society (ACS) for the professional training of chemists at the undergraduate level.

Major requirements

Chemistry courses

A minimum of 10 course credits in Chemistry (9 courses if CHE 161 is taken), to include:

  • CHE 121 (Chemical Principles I)
  • CHE 122 (Chemical Principles II)
  • CHE 202 (Analytical Chemistry)
  • CHE 225 (Organic Chemistry I Lecture)
  • CHE 323 (Physical Chemistry I)
  • CHE 324 (Physical Chemistry II)
  • CHE 326 (Organic Chemistry II Lecture)
  • CHE 327 (Organic Chemistry Laboratory)
  • Two additional chemistry courses at the 300 level, excluding 380 (Internship)

Math and physics courses

  • Mathematics through MAT 122 (Calculus of Several Variables)
  • Either PHY 161, 162, and 263 (General Physics I, II, and Laboratory) or, with permission of the Department, PHY 141, 142, and 263 (Introductory Physics I, II, and Laboratory).

Capstone course

To fulfill the capstone requirement, each student must submit a portfolio of work and have it approved by the department, as described on the department website.

ACS certification

A minimum of 12 course credits in Chemistry (11 courses if CHE 161 is taken), which must include CHE 121, 122, 202, 225, 323, 324, 326, 327, 333, 334, 335, one additional course at the 300 level, excluding 380, and a major research experience. Also required are PHY 161, 162, and 263; and mathematics through MAT 221 (Linear Algebra). Students seeking certification should confer with the Department chair to make certain that they will satisfy all the requirements.

Teaching major requirements

A minimum of 8 courses in chemistry (7 courses if CHE 161 is taken), to include the following: CHE 121, 122, 202, 225, 323, 326, 327, and one of the following advanced chemistry courses: 324, 328, 333, 334, or 335; either ENV 202 (Environmental Chemistry) or PHY 263 (Laboratory Physics); mathematics through MAT 122 (Calculus of Several Variables); and either PHY 161 and 162 (General Physics I and II) or PHY 141 and 142 (Introductory Physics I and II).

In addition to the foregoing requirements, prospective teachers must also apply for admission to the Teacher Education Program (preferably at the start of their sophomore year) and complete coursework leading to secondary certification described under Education. Prospective teachers should request a current list of the specific course requirements from the Education Office.

Minor requirements

A minimum of five course credits in Chemistry, excluding 280 and 380, which include CHE 202 and at least three additional courses numbered 200 or higher.

Biochemistry/Molecular Biology majors desiring to minor in Chemistry must complete at least two appropriate courses in Chemistry beyond those counted for the Biochemistry/Molecular Biology major.  (See Declaration of Degree Candidacy, Majors, and Minors.)


Students should consult with the Department concerning major programs which lead to graduate work in chemistry, chemical physics, biochemistry, and medicine, or to industrial employment.


  • The Summer Research Program of the Department of Chemistry provides an opportunity to spend a summer at Cornell College working on a research project with a member of the Chemistry faculty. Interested students should consult a faculty member in the Department.

Recommended course sequence

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

CHE 121
CHE 122
MAT 121
MAT 122
CHE 225
CHE 326
CHE 327
CHE 202
PHY 111
PHY 112
CHE 323
CHE 324
PHY 114
Two electives