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Undergraduate Bulletin 2007-2008
Bulletin Homepage |College of Arts & Sciences | Bulletin Information

Department of Chemistry


Distinguished Professor Emeritus

Harry L. Frisch, Ph.D.
Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn

Distinguished Professor

Eric Block, Ph.D. (Carla Rizzo Delray ’42 Professorship)
Harvard University

Distinguished Teaching Professor of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences and Chemistry

John W. Delano, Ph.D.
State University of New York at Stony Brook

Professors Emeritae/i

Shelton Bank, Ph.D.
Purdue University

Robert E. Frost, Ph.D.
Harvard University

Eugene Mclaren, Ph.D. (Collins Fellow)
Washington University

Yash P. Myer, Ph.D.
University of Oregon

Ramaswamy H. Sarma, Ph.D.
Brown University


Frank M. Hauser, Ph.D.
University of North Carolina

Bernard J. Laurenzi, Ph.D.
University of Pennsylvania

Charles P. Scholes, Ph.D.
Yale University

Lawrence C. Snyder, Ph.D.
Carnegie Institute of Technology

John T. Welch, Ph.D. (Department Chair)
Case Western Reserve University

Andrew J. Yencha, Ph.D.
University of California, Los Angeles

Professor of Education and Chemistry

Audrey Champagne, Ph.D.
University of Pittsburgh

Associate Professors Emeritae/i

Arthur O. Long, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin

Associate Professors

Lawrence H. Daly, Ph.D.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rabi A. Musah, Ph.D.
University of Arkansas

Paul J. Toscano, Ph.D.
Johns Hopkins University

Assistant Professors

Evgeny Dikarev, Ph.D.
Moscow State University

Igor Lednev, Ph.D.
Moscow Institute of Physics & Technology

Li Niu, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin

Marina Petrukhina, Ph.D.
Moscow State University

Alexander Shekhtman, Ph.D.
University at Albany, SUNY

Adjuncts (estimated): 4
Teaching Assistants (estimated): 25

The objective of the department is to provide students with a broad, fundamental knowledge of modern theoretical and experimental chemistry enabling graduates to embark immediately on professional careers in chemistry or to continue study at an advanced level toward higher degrees.

The general program in chemistry is approved by the Committee on Professional Training of the American Chemical Society. For students interested in engineering, 3–2 programs with Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Clarkson University are available.


Careers graduates have pursued include: industrial production chemist, industrial control chemist, analytical chemist (industrial and governmental laboratories), research assistant, technical sales and service representative, secondary school teacher, science writing and editing, forensics, chemical business, patent law, information science, toxicology, and even investment counseling and public relations.

Special Programs

For students interested in engineering, there are available 3-2 programs with Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Clarkson University, SUNY at New Paltz, and SUNY at Binghamton. Students in these programs spend their first three years at this campus and the last two years at the other. The tuition is at the University at Albany rate for the first three years only. Upon successful completion of the programs, students are awarded a B.S. in Chemistry from the University at Albany, and B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the other institution.

A typical program, in the three years here, includes all courses required for the B.S., Chemistry emphasis, degree except for A Chm 352Z, 420, and the 6 credits of advanced chemistry. Equivalent work at the engineering school is accepted for these last 12 credits. In addition, students take more mathematics, physics, and computer science, to prepare for the engineering school. This includes A Mat 220 and 311, A Phy 321C and 462, I Csi 101 and 204.

Degree Requirements for the Major in Chemistry

General Program B.A.: Combined major and minor sequence consisting of a minimum of 51 credits: A Chm 120 or 130, 121 or 131, 124, 125, 220, 221, 222, 223, 225, 320, 321, 420, 430, and 6 credits in advanced chemistry including at least 3 credits in courses other than A Chm 424, 425, or 426; A Mat 111 or 112 or 118 and 113 or 119; A Phy 105, 106, 108, and 109.

Note: A Phy 140 or 141 and 150 or 151 will substitute for A Phy 105 and 108 sequence.

General Program B.S.: Within this program, a student has a choice of four tracks: Chemistry Emphasis (65 or 66 credits); Chemistry/Polymers Emphasis (66 credits); Chemistry/Materials Emphasis (66 credits); and Chemistry/Forensic Chemistry Emphasis (68 credits). The specific requirements for individual tracks are outlined below.

Chemistry Emphasis: B.S.: (combined major and minor sequence) 65 or 66 credits: A Chm 120 or 130, 121 or 131, 124, 125, 220, 221, 222, 223, 225, 350, 351, 352Z, 420, 442or 342, five or six credits in advanced chemistry laboratories to be chosen from A Chm 417, 426, 430 and 450, and three credits in advanced chemistry in courses other than A Chm 424, 425, or 426; A  Mat 111 or 112 or 118, 113 or 119, and 214; A Phy 140 or 141, 145, 150 or 151, 155, 240 or 241.

Chemistry/Forensic Chemistry Emphasis: B.S.: (combined major and minor sequence) (68credits): A Chm 120 or 130, 121 or 131, 124, 125, 220, 221, 222, 223, 225, 350, 351, 352Z, 417, 420, 430, 442 or 342, 450 and 451; and A Mat 108, 111 or 112 or 118, 113 or 119, and 214; A Phy 140 or 141, 145, 150 or 151, 155.

Chemistry/Polymers Emphasis: B.S.: (combined major and minor sequence)(66credits): A Chm 120 or 130, 121 or 131, 124, 125, 220, 221, 222, 223, 225, 350, 351, 352Z, 408, 420, and 496; A Mat 111 or 112 or 118, 113 or 119, and 214; A Phy 140 or 141, 145, 150 or 151, 155, 240 or 241, and 462; X RPI 300 (RPI CHEM-4640, Polymer Science Laboratory—student cross-registers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute for the course).

Chemistry/Materials Emphasis: B.S. (combined major and minor sequence) (66 credits): A Chm 120 or 130, 121 or 131, 124, 125, 220, 221, 222, 223, 225, 350, 351, 352Z, 408, 420, and 495; A Mat 111 or 112 or 118,113 or 119 and 214; A Phy 140 or 141, 145, 150 or 151, 155, 240 or 241, 462 and 464; X RPI 300 (RPI CHEM-4640, Polymer Science laboratory) may be substituted for A Phy 464.

Honors Program

The honors program in chemistry is designed for outstanding students enrolled in the general program leading to the B.S. degree, chemistry emphasis. Students may apply for admission to the honors program by submitting a letter of request to the department chair no later than April 15 of the sophomore year (for admissions in the Fall) or November 15 of the junior year (for admission in the Spring). Junior transfers may apply at the time of their admission to the University. Primary emphasis will be placed on indications of academic ability and maturity sufficient for applicants to pursue with distinction a program involving independent research.

The minimum requirements for admission include: (1) Completion of A Chm 120 or 130, 121 or 131, 122, 124, 125, 220, 221, 222, 223,225 or their equivalents; (2) An overall grade point average of 3.50; (3) A grade point average of 3.60 in chemistry courses required for the major; and (4) Written recommendations from at least three faculty members, one of whom, preferably should be from outside the Department of Chemistry.

Students in the program must maintain both a minimum grade point average of 3.50 overall and of 3.60 in chemistry courses taken to satisfy major requirements during the junior and senior years. The progress of participants in the honors program will be reviewed at the end of junior year by the student’s adviser and the Departmental Undergraduate Committee. Students not meeting academic and independent research standards at that time may be precluded from continuing in the program during their senior year. These students may, of course, continue as majors.

Students in the program are required to complete a minimum of 71 credits as follows: in addition to the 19 credits listed above and mathematics and physics requirements listed for the general B.S. program with chemistry emphasis, A Chm 350, 351, 352, 353, 420, and six credits of advanced chemistry, not including research courses (64 credits total); A Chm 424 (1 credit), 3 credits of A Chm 426 (Undergraduate Research), and 4 credits of A Chm 427 (Honors Undergraduate Research). The independent study must include an honors research project, culminating with a written honors thesis and departmental seminar by the end of the student’s last semester.

After completion of the requirements above, the records of the candidates will be reviewed by the Departmental Undergraduate Committee. After consideration of overall academic record, performance and accomplishments in the independent study project, the quality of the Honors Seminar and Thesis, and the evaluations of departmental faculty members who have supervised these activities, a recommendation for or against a degree “with honors in chemistry” will be made by the committee to the departmental faulty. The final recommendation will be made by the departmental faculty and transmitted to the departmental chair.

Combined B.S./M.S. Program

The combined B.S./M.S. program in chemistry provides an opportunity for students of recognized academic ability and educational maturity to fulfill integrated requirements of undergraduate and master’s degree programs from the beginning of the junior year. A carefully designed program can permit a student to earn the B.S. and M.S. degrees within nine semesters.

The combined program requires a minimum of 138 credits, of which at least 30 must be graduate credits. In qualifying for the B.S., students must meet all University and college requirements, including the requirements of the undergraduate major described previously, the minimum 60-credit liberal arts and sciences requirement, general education requirements, and residency requirements. In qualifying for the M.S., students must meet all University and college requirements as outlined in the Graduate Bulletin, including completion of a minimum of 30 graduate credits and any other conditions such as a research seminar, thesis, comprehensive examination, professional experience, and residency requirements. Up to 12 graduate credits may be applied simultaneously to both the B.S. and M.S. programs.

The undergraduate requirement of 420 may be satisfied by A Chm 520. Likewise, the requirement of 6 credits in advanced chemistry may be satisfied by two 500-level graduate courses.

Students may apply for admission to the combined degree program in chemistry after the successful completion of 56 credits and after the satisfactory completion of A Chm 350. A cumulative grade point average of 3.2 or higher and three supportive letters of recommendation from faculty are required for consideration.