Chemistry and Biochemistry Area of Concentration Degree
The chemistry and biochemistry program is designed to provide the first two years of courses necessary to obtain a chemistry or biochemistry baccalaureate degree from a four-year college or university. In addition to general and organic chemistry knowledge, students will be trained in data collection and analysis, and scientific communication.
Through the laboratory portion of the program, students will reinforce their understanding and application of the theory learned in class, develop laboratory skills and techniques, and formulate conclusions based on observations.
The College's fully equipped labs and facilities, including the Bioscience Education Center at Germantown, the Science Center at Rockville, and the Science North and Science South buildings at Takoma Park/Silver Spring, ensure you have the resources to be successful. Each campus has a dedicated Math and Science Center where you will find additional resources, including free tutoring by qualified individuals.
Upon completion of this program, a student will be able to:
- Apply knowledge of general and organic chemistry to analyze data, draw conclusions, and solve problems.
- Apply safe practices to execute laboratory techniques and use appropriate equipment and instrumentation to carry out experimental procedures.
- Access scientific information using basic scientific references and literature and evaluate technical information critically.
- Communicate scientific concepts, experimental results, and properly cited reference material in an ethical, clear, and organized manner.
- Work effectively in groups, as leaders or team members, to solve problems and interact productively with a diverse group of peers.
Program Advising Guide
Meet with your academic advisor regularly to discuss your academic plans and make sure you are on track to graduate and/or transfer. The program advising guide outlines the degree requirements and is meant to supplement the advising process.
The majority of your chemistry and biochemistry credits will transfer to most, if not all, colleges, universities, and professional schools. The chemistry and biochemistry program also prepares you to pursue a degree in pharmacy. For best transfer results, work closely with an advisor or counselor, preferably a chemistry faculty member or academic transfer counselor, soon after you enroll.
Transfer to schools in the University of Maryland system is common and includes: University of Maryland; University of Maryland, Baltimore County; University of Maryland Global Campus; Universities at Shady Grove; Towson University; and Salisbury University.
Chemistry majors at most four-year institutions usually require the following MC courses:
CHEM 131 & 132 [former CH101 & 102] Principles of Chemistry I & II
CHEM 203 & 204 Organic Chemistry I & II
MATH 181 & 182 Calculus I & II
PHYS 161, 262 & 263 General Physics I, II, & III (a calculus-based physics) - varies by school.
Biochemistry: BIOL 150 Principles of Biology [former BI107]
Check specific requirements for Chemistry or Biochemistry majors using ARTSYS if you plan to transfer to a Maryland school, or refer to the major requirements websites of other schools for exact information on course requirements.
UMCP has made significant changes in the Science curricula, noted below. Also see the UMCP Limited Enrollment Program page for Majors in: Biological Sciences, Biochemistry, Chemistry and Environmental Science and Policy-Biodiversity and Conservation.
Biology Courses [for Biochemistry Majors]
BSCI 105 (Principles I) = MC's BIOL150 Principles of Biology I [former BI107]
and one additional BIOL, see UM advising page.
Chemistry Course Sequence at UMCP:
CHEM 131 General Chemistry I & Lab = MC's CHEM 131 Prin. of Chemistry I [former
CHEM 231 Organic Chemistry I & Lab = MC's CHEM 203 Organic Chemistry I [CH203]
CHEM 241 Organic Chemistry II & Lab = MC's CHEM 204 Organic Chem II [CH204]
CHEM 271 General Chemistry and Energetics = MC's CHEM 132 Prin. of Chem. II [CH102]
CHEM 272 Bioanalytical Chemistry Lab, 2 credits - There is no equivalent @ MC, students take this after transfer or while enrolled at MC through MTAP
MC students who have completed MC's Principles of Chem I & II and Organic Chem I & II [CHEM 131, 132, 203, and 204] will have to take CHEM 272 Bioanalytical Chem Lab [2 cr.] (but not CHEM 271) at UMCP to complete the chemistry requirement for a Life Science major at UMCP. Students who wish to take CHEM272 at UMCP may do so through the MTAP program, where students may take one course at UMCP while enrolled at MC.
Physics Course Sequence:
UMCP has a new Physics series for Chemistry majors: PHYS 141 & 142, Principles of Physics I and II - MC does not offer an equivalent for these courses; however, students may satisfy the PHYS requirement with PHYS 161 General Physics for Engineers I and 262 General Physics for Engineers II. Students at UMCP take the Physics sequence in the sophomore year.
Montgomery College's PHYS 233 - PHYSICS FOR LIFE SCIENCES I - 4 credits
The first part of a two-semester course in general physics specifically oriented towards applications relevant for students in biology and pre-medical programs. The course covers basic mechanics including forces and energy, properties of matter, and thermodynamics done in authentic biological contexts. PREREQUISITES: MATH 181, BIOL 150, BIOL 151, and CHEM 131, or consent of department. COREQUISITE: MATH 182. 3 hours lecture, 4 hours laboratory/discussion each week.
See UMCP Four-Year Plans for suggested course sequencing: Major Requirementsnew window.
For transfer advising and information for pre-pharmacy, pre-physical therapist, pre-physician assistant, pre-medicine, pre-dentistry, pre-optometry, or pre-veterinary, see Health Professions Advising.
For some positions listed, a bachelor's degree or higher may be required. Use the Career and Program Explorer to see a full report for this career field. See links below chart for further guidance and/or connect with a Program Advisor to discuss career goals.
Career fields for chemistry and biochemistry majors include occupations like food scientist and technologist, chemical technician, medical and clinical laboratory technologist, geological sample test technician, chemist, materials scientist, biochemist and biophysicist, chemical engineer, biochemical engineer, chemistry teacher, postsecondary. Some require a bachelor’s degree.
- MC Student Employment Services: Speak with the Student Employment Specialist for help with resume writing, interviewing, setting up a College Central Network (CCN)new window account and other job search topics.
- Career Coach: Explore Career Coach to learn more about this career and/or discover related majors and in-demand careers based on your current interests! Take a Career Assessment and then browse careers and job opportunities in the area.
A suggested course sequence for Chemistry and Biochemistry majors follows.
- All students should review the advising guide and consult an advisor.
- Find out about related programs and course in the Fields of Study section.
- Most courses have either assessment levels that must be met or prerequisites (courses that must be taken first). Part-time students and those who need to meet assessment levels or take prerequisite courses will take longer to complete a degree. An advisor will help make sure you are taking your courses in the right order.
- All degree-seeking students must take a central group of General Education courses in English, mathematics, arts, behavioral and social sciences, humanities, and science. These courses are included in the suggested course sequence below.
Suggested Course Sequence
Students should complete the required English and Math foundation courses within the first 24 credit hours. The chemistry and biochemistry area of concentration is a transfer program that provides the first two years of courses necessary for a four-year baccalaureate degree in chemistry or biochemistry. All students should review the Program Advising Guide and consult an advisor.
- ENGL 101 - Introduction to College Writing 3 semester hours
- MATH 181 - Calculus I 4 semester hours (MATF)
- CHEM 131 - Principles of Chemistry I 4 semester hours (NSLD)
- Humanities Distribution 3 semester hours (HUMD) ‡
- ENGL 102 - Critical Reading, Writing, and Research 3 semester hours (ENGF)
- BIOL 150 - Principles of Biology I 4 semester hours (NSLD/GEEL)
- CHEM 132 - Principles of Chemistry II 4 semester hours (NSLD)
- MATH 182 - Calculus II 4 semester hours
- CHEM 203 - Organic Chemistry I 5 semester hours
- PHYS 161 - General Physics I: Mechanics and Heat 3 semester hours
- Behavioral and Social Sciences Distribution 3 semester hours (BSSD) **
- Program Elective 1-4 semester hours #
- CHEM 204 - Organic Chemistry II 5 semester hours
- PHYS 262 - General Physics II: Electricity and Magnetism 4 semester hours
- Arts Distribution 3 semester hours (ARTD)
- Behavioral and Social Sciences Distribution 3 semester hours (BSSD)
- Program Elective 1-4 semester hours #
** Behavioral and Social Science Distribution (BSSD) courses must come from different disciplines.
Choose one distribution course that also fulfills the Global and Cultural Perspectives requirement.
‡ It is recommended that COMM 108 be taken as the HUMD distribution elective.
# Courses can be taken from the following program electives: CHEM 272 ***, ENES 206, SCIR 297, MATH 280, MATH 282, or BIOT, BIOL, PHYS, CMSC elective. Check transfer institution requirements when selecting program electives.
*** CHEM 272 strongly recommended for transfer to UMD.
Related Programs and Courses
General Studies Degree
Students who major in general studies explore personal, professional, and academic areas of interest within a flexible framework supporting transfer.
Workforce Development and Continuing Education
MC offers a wide variety of noncredit classes. These courses are designed to help you upgrade your skills, pursue career training, or learn something new.