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Graduate Studies

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Graduate Studies

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The major goal of a graduate education in chemistry is to master a significant segment of the existing knowledge, including theories and techniques, and to demonstrate the creative capability to discover new understandings and techniques through research. Accordingly, requirements include an established minimum of classroom course work and studies and completion of original research work presented in a written dissertation.

The graduate program at OU is a balance between required and elective coursework and research. Divisions within the areas of chemistry and biochemistry are used at OU to organize teaching assignments, course requirements and degree candidacy requirements. There are six divisions at OU: Analytical, Biochemistry, Chemical Education, Inorganic, Organic, Physical Chemistry, and Structural Biology. Students elect one of these divisions as their major and must fulfill the requirements of that division to earn a degree. Given the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of modern chemistry, students will often fulfill the degree requirements of one division while carrying out research in an overlapping research area. Minimum course requirements are 16 credit hours of graduate level lecture courses. These must include at least four credit hours in two divisions outside the student's major division. Depending on the division, candidacy exams for the Ph.D. degree are given in the second or at the beginning of the third year of graduate studies. More information on the degree requirements for each division is included in the Graduate Student Handbook.

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Student working under a protective fume hood.

Graduate Faculty

Robert Cichewicz, Interim Chair
SLSRC, Room 1005

Ivan Yip, Assistant Chair                                                                                               SLSRC, Room 1016

Rakhi Rajan, G.L.A.D.
SLSRC, Room 1000

Phone: (405) 325-4811
Fax: (405) 325-6111



Ashby, Cichewicz, Glatzhofer, Hansmann, Liu, Mao, Morvant, Nelson, Richter-Addo, Rybenkov, West, White, Zgurskaya

Associate Professors:

Biggs, Rajan, Rice, Schroeder, Sharma, Sims, Wu, Yang, Yip

Assistant Professors:

Bourne, Clifford, Kothapalli, McCall, Odeleye, Saparov, Shao, Singh

Graduate Degrees Offered

Areas of Specialization

Students may specialize in one of the following major areas of chemistry (analytical, biological, inorganic, organic, physical and chemical education) or in any combination.  

Prerequisites for Full Graduate Standing

Students who have satisfied the basic chemistry course requirements for the Bachelor of Science in Chemistry degree at the University of Oklahoma will have met the requirements for full graduate standing. Undergraduate majors from other institutions should meet departmental requirements as follows:

  • the equivalent of courses 3053, 3152, 3153 (organic chemistry);
  • 4023, 4033 (analytical chemistry);
  • 3421, 3423, 3521, 3523 (physical chemistry);
  • 4333 (inorganic chemistry)

Deficiencies in these requirements may necessitate additional coursework, and may increase the number of course credit hours required for an advanced degree.

Special Requirements for Graduate Studies

Prior to start of courses, instructors of Introductory courses will administer Proficiency Examinations (or other instruments) to assess whether first-semester graduate students are prepared for the Introductory course that the student is interested in taking and/or which may have been recommended by the Graduate Committee during advising. The nature of the Proficiency Instruments are described in the syllabi of the Introductory courses and, depending on the individual student's background may require self-instruction in order to demonstrate readiness to take the course. In the event a student does not exhibit proficiency and he/she still wishes to enroll in the course, the Instructor of Record will advise the student what can be done to prepare for it prior to the start of the course

Minimum course requirements for graduate degree candidates include the completion of a minimum of sixteen credit hours in letter-graded lecture courses at the 5000 or 6000 level. At least four credit hours must be taken in courses at the 5000 or 6000 level which are offered in two other divisions or departments outside of the student's major division. If more than three credit hours of these general lecture course requirements are to be taken outside the Department of Chemistry, approval must be given by both the Advisory Committee and the Graduate Committee.

A minimum grade average of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) must be achieved for the first sixteen credit hours taken which qualify as general lecture courses with no more than two grades below B allowed. Failure to meet these requirements will result in the student being terminated from the graduate program in chemistry. Students must also complete the specific courses required by their particular division.