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Doctoral Program Overview

Clemson University is a public research institution located in the rapidly developing upstate region of South Carolina. It is a comprehensive research university with a traditional emphasis on science and engineering. The Department of Chemistry is a medium-sized department of 26 research-active faculty and approximately 100 graduate students. Faculty in the department conduct research in diverse areas of chemistry, with strengths in advanced materials, chemical biology, computational chemistry, nanoscale materials and solid-state chemistry.

Students have access to all of the facilities that would help them explore and succeed in new research areas, and we have recently made substantial upgrades to our X-ray and magnetic resonance (NMR and EPR) facilities. Clemson is a safe and enjoyable place to live, with a low cost of living and year-round access to outdoor recreational activities.

Entering Ph.D. students are typically appointed as teaching assistants, with a gross annual stipend of $27,000. After the first year, many Ph.D. students are supported on research assistantships. Additional fellowship support is available for well-qualified applicants.


Ph.D. Degree Requirements

Two women working in lab with laser.The Ph.D. in Chemistry is not awarded solely on the basis of coursework completed, residence, completion of qualifying examinations or other routine requirements. The final basis for granting this degree is a student’s grasp of the subject matter, competence in planning and conducting research, and the ability to communicate professionally both orally and in writing.

Ph.D. students must qualify to pursue the degree by completing a flexible curriculum of coursework designed to demonstrate broad chemical awareness, including a distribution requirement and a focus area requirement. Coursework is typically completed in the first year or two of the program.

This degree requires a minimum of 30 credits beyond the master’s degree, and at least 60 credits beyond the bachelor’s degree. A minimum of 12 credit hours of nonresearch coursework and a minimum of 18 hours of dissertation research are required. An advisory committee will aid in developing an individualized curriculum — to be outlined in a plan of study — that meets program requirements and provides appropriate training to meet student goals. Once a dissertation has been written and successfully defended, a student’s advisory committee will certify that the student has earned a Ph.D. degree.

Additional Program Information

Refer to the Graduate Student Handbook (PDF) for detailed information regarding the Ph.D. program, or contact the department.

Department of Chemistry
Department of Chemistry | 235 Hunter Chemistry Laboratory, Clemson, SC 29634