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Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science?

Clemson University’s Department of Chemistry provides two undergraduate programs – a Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry as well as a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. Our Bachelor of Science degree will prepare you for a professional career in chemistry, while our Bachelor of Arts degree gives you a broad education needed for a career dependent on a basic knowledge of chemistry.

What coursework is common between the two programs?

Regardless of whether or not you are a working toward a B.S. or a B.A. in Chemistry, you will complete the following:

  • 31 credit hours toward the University’s General Education requirements
  • First semester Chemistry Orientation course
  • Chemistry Communication Course (2 semesters)
  • Chemistry Capstone course (last semester)
  • General Chemistry I and II
  • Organic Chemistry I and II
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Quantitative Analysis
  • 2 Chemistry electives

What coursework is different in the two programs?

The Bachelor of Arts provides more room to explore other areas of study here at Clemson University, as students are required to complete a minor (15+ hours) in an area outside of Chemistry. Additionally, Bachelor of Arts students will complete two more semesters of a foreign language.

The Bachelor of Science requires two semesters of research alongside a faculty member and three more labs within the major. There is also an additional math and physics class.

If I want to pursue graduate or professional school, which degree program should I choose?

Choose the path that looks like it will provide the curriculum and courses that interest you the most. Both majors are equally acceptable when applying to medical, dental, or graduate school. Both curricula also provide the opportunity to participate in research with faculty (for BAs, it would be utilizing the two Chemistry elective courses). Schools look at more than your academic record, but it always helps to be truly interested and invested in the major and the courses you are taking.