Mar 02, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog

Chemistry BS, ACS Certified


Please click here  to see Chemistry Department information.

The Chemistry Department offers two options for a chemistry degree: a BS Chemistry or a BS Chemistry ACS Certified. Students interested in the chemistry major should consult regularly with the chemistry major advisor, Dr. Marta K. Maroń ( The Advisor can help you select the track that best fits your future goals. A complete description of the chemistry major programs may be obtained in the Department of Chemistry office (Science 3071) or Department website.

Qualified majors are strongly urged to participate in directed research with a research faculty member and in the departmental honors program. We also strongly encourage chemistry majors to participate in the Department by serving as graders, learning assistants, and/or teaching assistants. Contact the chemistry major advisor for more information and/or questions.

Students planning chemistry as a career should be familiar with the recommendations of the American Chemical Society (ACS) for the professional training of chemists. The ACS certification requires students following the BS program of study take foundation courses in the five sub-disciplines of chemistry: analytical chemistry, biochemistry, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry and physical chemistry. In addition, students take an in-depth (second semester) course in four out of the five sub-disciplines and are required to complete 400 hours of laboratory work post General Chemistry Laboratories. Laboratory work has to encompass four of the five sub-disciplines. General Chemistry I and II with laboratories are considered introductory courses and are prerequisites to foundation courses. No chemistry course with a grade of less than C (2.0) can be applied toward ACS certification. Students should check with the undergraduate chemistry major Advisor for details.

These Degree requirements are subject to periodic revision by the Academic Department, and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences reserves the right to make exceptions and substitutions as judged necessary in individual cases. Therefore, the College strongly urges students to consult regularly with their major advisor and CLAS advisor to confirm the best plans of study before finalizing them.

Program Delivery

This is an on-campus program.

Declaring This Major

Click here  to go to information about declaring a major.

General Requirements

To earn a degree, students must satisfy all requirements in each of the areas below, in addition to their individual major requirements.

Program Requirements

  1. Students must complete a total of 67 credit hours, including a minimum of 45 CHEM credit hours and 22 credit hours in ancillary coursework.
  2. Students must complete a minimum of 16 upper division level (3000-level and above) CHEM credit hours.
  3. Students must earn a minimum grade of C(2.0) in all major courses taken at CU Denver and must achieve a minimum cumulative major GPA of 2.0. All graded attempts in required and elective courses are calculated in the major GPA. Students cannot complete major or ancillary course requirements as pass/fail.
  4. Students must complete a minimum of 14 CHEM credit hours with CU Denver faculty, including CHEM 4128, 4518 or 4538.

Program Restrictions, Allowances and Recommendations

  1. A student who has declared a chemistry major at CU Denver may not take additional chemistry courses outside of the department for the purpose of applying those credits toward meeting the requirements of the major without prior written approval of the undergraduate advisor. No more than 3 additional hours of such pre-approved transfer credits will be allowed.
  2. All courses applied to the chemistry major need to be taken within ten years of the graduation date.
  3. Intro Experimental Physics labs I and II (PHYS 2321 and PHYS 2341) are specifically designed for students in non-Physics majors and can be paired with either College Physics (PHYS 2010 and PHYS 2020) or General Physics (PHYS 2311 and PHYS 2331) lectures. Students pursuing a second major in Physics should complete General Physics lectures (PHYS 2311 and PHYS 2331)  and Applied Physics Labs (PHYS 2351 and PHYS 2361).