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Chemistry BA vs. BS Comparison Table



BA Chemistry

BS Chemistry

Variety of Options

More options in pre-professional health (pre-pharmacy, pre-dental, pre-optometry, pre-pathology assistant or pre-medical) and chemistry teaching

Fewer options (pre-medical, pre-dental, biochemistry and chemistry).

Impact on graduate school options

Does not require pre-requisite courses in calculus-based physics and physical chemistry required by some chemistry doctoral programs. However, contains pre-requisite courses for graduate programs in related sciences (biology, biochemistry, molecular biology).

Recommended for students that are considering a graduate program in chemistry or biochemistry.


Less rigorous in math and chemistry than the B.S. degree. Students take non-calculus based physics and physical chemistry. Students take courses with science majors.

Our most rigorous program requires students to take calculus-based physics and physical chemistry. Students take courses with chemistry and physics majors.


Contains enough chemistry to be a bench chemist. However, contains more biology than the BS Chemistry option (5 courses). Also contains courses in economics, psychology, and philosophy. Considered a well-rounded program.


Contains more chemistry than the BA Chemistry program. The biochemistry option contains three courses in biology with focus on molecular and cellular biology. More upper division chemistry courses and research prepare students for careers in science. Considered a science focused technical program.

Math Courses

Requires one-semester of calculus.

Requires two semesters of calculus (biochemistry option) or three-semesters of calculus (chemistry option).

Impact on Professional Schools

Contains all the pre-requisite courses for pre-professional programs listed (pre-pharmacy, pre-dental, pre-optometry, pre-pathology assistant or pre-medical). Even contains pre-requisite courses that double count for general education such as ECO 230 and PSY 200.

Contains all the pre-requisite courses for pre-medical and pre-dental schools. Students interested in other programs need to make sure they take courses required for admission because they are not explicitly listed as supporting courses.

Accreditation or Recommendations

Does not follow a recommended or accredited program.

Both options approved by the American Chemical Society (ACS). The biochemistry option also follows the recommendations of the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB).

Free Electives

More: 15-27 hours (except for teaching option which has zero). This flexibility also provides you an avenue to fulfill degree requirements for selected minor(s) without extending your undergraduate years.

Fewer: 6-11 hours

Total Curriculum Requirements

120 hours

120 hours

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