A candidate for the master's degree must complete 30 credit hours of course work (including the core program), of which 18 credits must be at the 600-level or higher. The program is flexible enough to meet a wide range of student interests. Students electing to do a master's thesis will complete six credit hours of CHEM 799: Master's Thesis Research. A non-thesis option, in which additional course work is undertaken in lieu of the thesis, also may be selected. In this case, the student will obtain some experience in research by completing CHEM 600: Advanced Laboratory Projects.
In either program, the remaining courses and seminars may be taken in areas of interest to the student(with approval of their advisor), including the biological sciences, physics, mathematics, chemistry and chemical engineering. Prior to registration for the first semester of graduate study, each new graduate student will meet with a member of the graduate committee who will assist in planning and implementing the degree program until a research advisor is selected.
During the first year of graduate study, master's students who select the thesis option will consult individually with the members of the faculty to discuss the choice of a thesis topic. If a thesis advisor is chosen, the advisor will become the student's counseling major advisor. All entering M.S. and Ph.D. students are asked to take placement examinations. Students whose background is deficient in specific areas will be required to enroll in appropriate undergraduate courses and obtain a grade of "B" or better. Students excelling on those examinations may be exempted from specific core courses.
For all master's students, a final oral examination will be arranged in accordance with the procedures of the department. This examination will follow completion of formal course work and the submission of either the master's thesis or, in the case of the non-thesis option, a scholarly paper indicating the student's familiarity with an area of modern chemical research.