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Academic Program

Professor Stephenson explains lab techniques to his general chemistry student.

The Chemistry and Biochemistry Department offers a course major in Chemistry, a special Major in Biochemistry, and a special major in Chemical Physics. Each of these three majors can also be completed as part of the Honors Program.

WHAT MAKES OUR PROGRAM UNIQUE?

  • Many students have access to research experience, which can begin as early as the summer after their freshman year. Fellowships are supported by faculty-secured funding from the NIH, NSF, and amfAR, among others.

  • Research projects have led to student-faculty co-authored articles in the journals of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Chemical Society as well as in AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses, Journal of Biological Chemistry, and Nature Communications.

  • By completing an independent research project, students may earn a degree certified by the American Chemical Society.

  • Students compete for paid off-campus internships in academic, industrial, and government laboratories.

Swarthmore College also offers a major in "Educational Studies and Chemistry (with teacher certification)" as described on the Educational Studies website.

The department also offers a minor in Chemistry.

Registration Guide for First Year Students - Class of 2026.

Requirements and other details of the Academic Program can be found in the College Catalog » 

 

student group shot
24 students are doing research this summer under the supervision of 5 faculty members.
student doing research

Participation in research exposes students to the practice of chemistry as a process of creating new knowledge.

student doing research

Students have opportunities to engage in independent research in close collaboration with faculty.

Ice cream served chemistry style!

Ice cream served chemistry style!

Orgo I lab having a round table discussion about their unknown compounds.

Orgo I lab having a round table discussion about their unknown compounds.

Students have frequent opportunities to present their research in poster sessions on campus and at professional meetings.

Students have frequent opportunities to present their research in poster sessions on campus and at professional meetings.

Faculty-student collaboration is an integral part of the undergraduate experience in Chemisty and Biochemistry at Swarthmore.

Faculty-student collaboration is an integral part of the undergraduate experience in Chemistry and Biochemistry at Swarthmore.

Academic Curriculum

The department offers a course major in Chemistry, a special Major in Biochemistry and a special major in Chemical Physics.

group shot

A Chemistry team of two faculty members and nine research students ran a 5-week summer enrichment program for middle school students.

Community Outreach

During National Chemistry week, students and faculty visit local schools to do demonstrations and supervise hands-on activities.

24 students are doing research this summer under the supervision of 5 faculty members.
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