Chemistry is the study of molecules, how they are created from atoms, how their structures affect their chemical and physical properties, and how they unite or assemble to form the matter that makes up the physical and natural world. Knowledge of chemistry is fundamental to an in-depth understanding of all materials in the natural world and the structural properties and biochemical reactions that define living systems. Chemistry interfaces with biology, physics, mathematics, computer science, and engineering.
Modern chemistry’s range of applications is broad, spanning many aspects of human activities such as the improvement of agriculture, the utility of alternative and renewable energies, the discovery of new drugs and medical diagnostics, and the creation of new materials by learning how molecules are assembled and how they recognize one another. Chemistry is at the heart of sustainability—meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the earth to provide for future generations. It also drives the exciting interdisciplinary fields of nanotechnology, materials science, biotechnology, polymers, environmental science, forensics, and chemical biology to name several examples.
The Chemistry major builds on the Foundations of Science program and offers students the opportunity to pursue their interests in the traditional sub-disciplines of chemistry: organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry, physical chemistry, and analytical chemistry. The major offers elective courses that explore the interdisciplinary areas of biochemistry, computational chemistry, chemical biology, and materials science. A degree in Chemistry prepares students for graduate work and rewarding careers in all sectors of scientific life, from basic research to commercial product development. It also enables the pursuit of exciting careers in education, law, medicine, business, and government.
The study away pathway for the Chemistry major can be found on the NYUAD Student Portal at students.nyuad.nyu.edu/pathways. Students with questions should contact the Office of Global Education.
The program strongly recommends that not more than one chemistry elective be taken while studying away.
Students majoring in chemistry will achieve a factual and theoretical understanding of the physical world and the atoms and molecules that comprise it; they will understand the important role of chemistry as the central science and the integration of chemistry with the other disciplines; will conduct laboratory experiments effectively and safely; will solve problems through a rigorous scientific approach; will be able to search and use the peer-reviewed scientific literature effectively; demonstrate effective communication in oral and written form; will learn how to work effectively in a multidisciplinary team; they will practice ethics and conduct themselves responsibly with an awareness of the role of chemistry in society.
Specialization in Biophysics for Natural Science Majors
The Biology, Chemistry, and Physics majors offer a specialization in Biophysics which emphasizes the crosstalk between these three disciplines in understanding biological function.
Everything obeys the laws of physics, and biological systems are no exception. The complexity of biological systems, however, is compounded by the fact that they span a broad range of interacting spatial scales from a few atoms to global ecosystems, and that life inherently functions far from the equilibrium. This complexity poses problems for physicists, chemists, and biologists that are at once interesting and challenging. Biophysics addresses these problems through an interdisciplinary approach that builds on strengths in physics, chemistry, and biology.
Chemistry majors who elect to complete the Biophysics specialization must complete all courses required for the Chemistry majors, three required Biophysics courses, and one elective selected from the list below. No more than two of these courses can be used to satisfy the elective requirement for the Chemistry major. The other two would be in addition to the minimum elective requirements for the major.
New York University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions supports the application process for all undergraduate programs at NYU. For additional information about undergraduate admissions, including application requirements, see How to Apply.