ACS Certified Degree

The UW-Madison Department of Chemistry is approved by the American Chemical Society (ACS) to certify the degrees of graduating students who have completed the curriculum and professional training recommended by ACS for chemistry bachelor's degree graduates. Certification indicates that the student has completed rigorous course work that provides them with the skills needed for a successful career in science.

Students graduating with the chemistry major from UW-Madison already meet most of the requirements of ACS certification. They can obtain the certification by electing to take specific courses that satisfy both the requirements of the major and the ACS guidelines. Additional requirements for certification are:

  • A course in biochemistry, satisfied by BIOCHEM 501 or 507 (3 credits)
  • At least 400 total laboratory hours, which can be satisfied by the combination of all the required core laboratory courses (in organic, inorganic, analytical and physical chemistry) plus two to three laboratory credits from any combination of Chem 346, Chem 524 (3 credit course, but only one credit is a lab credit), Chem 681/682, Chem 691/692, or Biomolecular Chemistry 504. The exact number of lab credits required from these courses depends on how the student has satisfied the core lab requirements. Please consult the chemistry major advisor for more details.

The biochemistry course satisfies three of the five credits of advanced work required for the chemistry major, while two credits from Chem 524 also count towards the advanced work. Chem 346, 1 credit of Chem 524, CHEM 691/692 Senior Thesis and Biomolecular Chemistry 504 all count towards the three additional lab credits required for the major, while CHEM 681/682 Senior Honors Thesis does not. CHEM 681/682 is required for students earning honors in the chemistry major.

Note that neither Chem 299 nor Chem 699 Directed Study can be used to satisfy the lab hours needed for ACS certification. However, Chem 699 can be used to satisfy additional lab credits needed for the chemistry major.