Graduate Program

The Department of Chemistry at BGSU has a strong commitment to excellence in education and an international reputation for producing outstanding scientists. Important elements of our program include the atmosphere of active research programs, state-of-the-art facilities, good advising, high quality challenging courses, the opportunity to talk with many well-known visiting scientists, and an active residential campus.

The Department of Chemistry is affiliated with two graduate programs: the Ph.D in Photochemical Sciences and the M.S. in Chemistry.  The doctoral Photochemical Sciences program is overseen collaboratively with the Center for Photochemical Sciences.  Students accepted into this program are eligible to apply for both a graduate assistantship and a full tuition scholarship.  The Master's in Chemistry program is offered in both thesis and non-thesis forms.  However, applicants to either Master's program are generally expected to be self-funded.

The Ph.D. program in Photochemical Sciences, begun in 1989 with four students, now has over 60 enrolled. Graduates of the program have many opportunities. They are employed in industry (Eastman Kodak, Hewlett Packard, Merck, Pfizer, Sherwin Williams), conduct postdoctoral work, or teach in higher education. The doctoral degree in photochemical sciences can open many doors because it is so unique and interdisciplinary.

The Ph. D. program offers a unique, interdisciplinary research experience for students having backgrounds in chemistry, physics, biology, and/or materials science. Research is focused on studying how the interactions of light with matter can affect a variety of chemical, physical and biological systems. Both basic knowledge and practical applications are being pursued by small to mid-sized research teams. In particular, Center faculty have been instrumental in contributing to the fundamental development of photo-driven chemical processes and in addressing critical environmental and energy problems over the last two decades, receiving worldwide recognition for these efforts.

In recent years, several new faculty have been hired whose research interests are in the areas of optical spectroscopy, materials chemistry, computational chemistry, single-molecule spectroscopy, and biophysics. These areas complement our traditional strengths in time-resolved (ultrafast) spectroscopy, organic photochemistry, and biomolecular design.

Some highlights of our research include:

  • Molecular Photochemistry and Photophysics of Novel Chromophores
  • Single-Molecule Spectroscopy and Imaging
  • Hybrid Metal-Organic Photonic Materials
  • Organic Semiconductors, Electroluminescence, and Sensory Materials
  • Solar Energy Capture, Conversion and Catalysis
  • Biophotonics
  • Computational Mechanistic Photochemistry
  • Photopolymers and Photopolymerization
  • Femtochemistry and ultrafast dynamics

Please visit the Center for Photochemial Sciences website for more information and how to apply to the PhD program.

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Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the graduate degree, students in Chemistry are expected to be able to:

  • Demonstrate the ability to apply quantum mechanical methods to predict observable properties for molecular motions including translation, rotation and vibration.
  • Demonstrate the ability to analyze molecular electronic wave functions to characterize bonding and stability. 
  • Demonstrate an active knowledge of fundamentals of organic reaction mechanisms and methods for their elucidation, analyzing the mechanism and understand the mechanistic diagrams. 
  • Demonstrate an understanding of selected topics of physical organic chemistry including stereochemistry principles, and interpret the application of reactive intermediates in chemistry. 
  • Demonstrate the ability to analyze a wide variety of spectral data to determine an unknown molecule’s composition and structure.
  • Demonstrate the ability to evaluate previous scientific conclusions as they apply to a new area of investigation. 
  • Demonstrate the ability to effectively communicate original scientific findings.  

Accreditation and/or Program/Cluster Review

Bowling Green State University [BGSU] is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.  BGSU has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission since 01/01/1916. The most recent reaffirmation of accreditation was received in 2012 - 2013. Questions should be directed to the Office of Institutional Effectiveness.

The Chemistry program will undergo its next Program/Cluster Review during the Academic Year 2019-20.

Professional Licensure (If applicable)

Bowling Green State University programs leading to licensure, certification and/or endorsement, whether delivered online, face-to-face or in a blended format, satisfy the academic requirements for those credentials set forth by the State of Ohio.

Requirements for licensure, certification and/or endorsement eligibility vary greatly from one profession to another and from state to state. The Chemistry program does not lead to professional licensure.

Gainful Employment (If applicable)

Under the Higher Education Act Title IV disclosure requirements, an institution must provide current and prospective students with information about each of its programs that prepares students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation.

The Chemistry program is not a recognized occupation that requires a Gainful Employment disclosure.