Chemistry Minor

College of Sciences
Undergraduate minor

chemistry students being led by faculty in lab

About this program

The chemistry minor provides students with a broad introduction to the discipline of chemistry combined with detailed exploration of at least one area of interest. The chemistry minor complements other majors where additional chemistry knowledge is of benefit. The chemistry minor prepares students to apply scientific methodology to solve chemical problems, to relate chemistry to their daily life and environment, to think critically and quantitatively, and to understand the experimental methods, techniques and instrumentation used in chemistry.

Student outcomes

Students will be able to:

  • Apply the scientific method to experimental design and execution. More specifically, students will be able to:
    • Describe the design of an experiment.
    • Apply discipline specific laboratory techniques.
    • Analyze results and interpret data.
    • Summarize the experiments and results using standard discipline conventions.
  • Relate matter and energy as well as quantify changes to a given system. More specifically, students will be able to:
    • Identify ionic and covalent compounds utilizing the periodic table.
    • Summarize system energy before, during, and after a given system perturbation.
    • Analyze common reaction types for a given system.
  • Categorize matter according to structure and function within living systems. More specifically, students will be able to:
    • Classify organic and biological compounds by name and chemical structure.
    • Relate structure to a compound’s physicochemical properties.
    • Formulate relevant reactions to compounds and predict products.
    • Evaluate a complex living system on a molecular level.
  • Interpret scientific findings via written and oral presentations.
    • Summarize a scientific experiment or series of experiments using discipline language in written form.
    • Discuss a scientific concept orally and in writing.

Enrolling in this program

Program eligibility requirements

To be eligible for acceptance to the Chemistry minor, students must submit a College of Sciences Undergraduate Program Declaration Form once they have successfully completed 15 credits of the required courses. All prerequisite and required courses must be completed with grades of C- or above. Transfer coursework equivalency is determined by the Natural Sciences Department.

Current students: Declare your program

Once you’re admitted as an undergraduate student and have met any further requirements your chosen program may have, you may declare a major or declare an optional minor.

Future students: Apply now

Apply to Metropolitan State: Start the journey toward your Chemistry Minor now. Learn about the steps to enroll or, if you have questions about what Metropolitan State can offer you, request information, visit campus or chat with an admissions counselor.

Get started on your Chemistry Minor

Program requirements

Each foundation science course must include at least one semester credit of professionally supervised on-ground laboratory experience with standard undergraduate laboratory equipment and materials. Lower-division (100- and 200-level) courses cannot be used to fulfill upper division core or elective requirements in the minor.

Course requirements

Prerequisites

Choose one

MATH 115 College Algebra

4 credits

This course develops the fundamental concepts of algebra with an emphasis on the classification and analysis of linear, quadratic, polynomial, exponential and logarithmic functions. Applications to the natural and social sciences are given throughout. It aims to provide insights into the nature and utility of mathematics, and helps students develop mathematical reasoning skills.

Full course description for College Algebra

MATH 120 Precalculus

4 credits

This course is designed to prepare students for calculus. Topics include polynomial, rational, exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions; the algebra of functions; multiple function representations; and an introduction to analytic geometry.

Full course description for Precalculus

Requirements (23 credits)

Each student must complete 23 credits in the minor including at least 9 upper division credits and at least 10 credits at Metropolitan State. 200-level courses are not upper division. All prerequisite and required courses must be completed with grades of C- or above.

Foundation (18 credits)

CHEM 111 General Chemistry I

4 credits

The first semester of the comprehensive first year course in chemistry. Covers measurement, stoichiometry, solution chemistry, atomic structure, bonding, molecular structure, molecular visualization, and problem solving. Lab includes basic laboratory techniques, instrumentation, methodology, chemical analysis, and laboratory notebook procedures. The labs are also designed to engage students in critical thinking and concept building and are directly coordinated with the lecture part of the course. Intended for students who are pursuing, or considering, the biology or life sciences teaching major and/or chemistry minor, and qualified students seeking a general education science course with lab.

Full course description for General Chemistry I

CHEM 112 General Chemistry II

4 credits

The second semester of the comprehensive algebra-based first year course in chemistry. Covers acid/base theory, chemical equilibria, nuclear and electrochemistry, redox reactions, terminology, functional groups, reactivity of organic compounds and an introduction to biochemistry. Includes lab. Intended for students pursuing the biology or life sciences teaching major and/or chemistry minor.

Full course description for General Chemistry II

CHEM 231 Organic Chemistry I

4 credits

The first semester of a comprehensive course in organic chemistry. This course covers structure and nomenclature, bonding theory, reaction mechanisms, stereochemistry, reaction kinetics and thermodynamics, instrument methods [e.g. NMR, IR, MS] and the syntheses and reactions of various functional groups of organic compounds. Molecular modeling software is used to assist in visualizing structures and reaction mechanisms, and in the interpretation of various spectra. Intended for biology majors and chemistry minors.

Full course description for Organic Chemistry I

CHEM 231L Organic Chemistry I Lab

1 credits

This course provides the laboratory experience to accompany Chem 231 Organic Chemistry I. This course introduces the techniques, specialized equipment, instrumental methods and safety procedures common in an organic lab setting. Students get hands-on experience with the instrumentation, equipment, hazardous material procedures, and multi-step methods employed in the synthesis of larger, more complicated organic structures from simpler molecules.

Full course description for Organic Chemistry I Lab

CHEM 341 Quantitative Analysis

5 credits

This course is first in a series for analytical chemistry. Student work will focus on the fundamental principles of volumetric and gravimetric methods for separation, identification and quantification of chemical substances. Students will learn proper statistical treatment of experimental data and error analysis as well as develop concepts of accuracy and precision. Techniques and concepts presented in this class are in high demand by a variety of industrial labs.

Full course description for Quantitative Analysis

Electives (5 credits)

At least one course from the following list, or other advanced chemistry courses by advisor permission, including at least one credit of lab, as needed to reach a total of 23 credits.

CHEM 311 Environmental Chemistry

3 credits

This class addresses the principles of atmospheric chemistry, energy and climate changes, water chemistry, and soil chemistry. During the course of the semester, students will learn the chemistry behind modern challenges to our environment. It will include and examination of the sources, reactions, transport, and fates of different chemical species in the environment. The following topics will be covered: a) atmospheric chemistry and air pollution; b) energy and climate change; c) water chemistry and water pollution; d) toxic organic compounds e) wastes, soils and sediments.

Full course description for Environmental Chemistry

CHEM 311L Environmental Chemistry Lab

2 credits

This course is intended for Chemistry and Environmental Science majors; this course contributes to the Category 2 electives for the Chemistry major and Physical Science Core Courses for Environmental Science. This two-credit lab course must be taken concurrently with CHEM311 Environmental Chemistry. This course continues the introduction of the techniques, specialized equipment, instrumental methods and safety procedures that was begun in CHEM 112. Students get hands-on experience with the instrumentation, equipment, and hazardous material procedures. Students will learn techniques relevant to the study of atmospheric and water chemistry. Students will gain experience with bench analytical techniques such as titrations and instrumental analysis using mass spectrometry and atomic absorption.

Full course description for Environmental Chemistry Lab

CHEM 325 Biochemistry I: Biomolecule Structure and Function

3 credits

This course is the first of two-semester biochemistry lecture sequence and part of three lecture-lab biochemistry series. The series broadly cover the study of chemical processes in living organisms. In this course, the emphasis is on the structure and function of biomoleculesparticularly proteins and nucleic acid. Topics covered include structure and function of proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, and nucleotides and nucleic acids; biosignaling pathways and signal transduction; biological membranes and the mechanism of protein transporters; acid-base chemistry and how it applies to enzyme mechanism; and, enzyme kinetics and coenzyme structure and function.

Full course description for Biochemistry I: Biomolecule Structure and Function

CHEM 327 Biochemistry Laboratory

2 credits

This lecture/laboratory course exposes students to modern techniques in biochemistry. The course is part of a year-long biochemistry series that broadly cover the study of chemical processes in living organisms. Biochemical techniques covered include bench chemistry techniques, chromatography techniques, polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, protein purification and characterization, protein assay techniques, and spectrophotometry. Students also carry out semester-end research project in which they apply the techniques they learned in the first part of the semester.

Full course description for Biochemistry Laboratory

CHEM 332 Organic Chemistry II

4 credits

The second semester of a comprehensive course in organic chemistry. This course introduces organic functional groups that include oxygen, nitrogen, and aromatic systems and related reaction mechanisms, multi-step synthetic routes, polymers, and introduce the chemical structures common in many biomolecules. Instrumentals methods (e.g. NMR, IR, MS, UV) are discussed in greater detail, and molecular modeling software used to assist in visualizing structures and reaction mechanisms, and in the interpretation of various spectra. Intended for biology majors and chemistry minors.

Full course description for Organic Chemistry II

CHEM 332L Organic Chemistry II Lab

1 credits

This course provides the laboratory experience to accompany CHEM 232 Organic Chemistry II. This course continues the introduction of the techniques, specialized equipment, instrumental methods and safety procedures that was begun in Chem 231 Organic Chem I Lab. Students get hands-on experience with the instrumentation, equipment, hazardous material procedures, and multi-step methods employed in the synthesis of larger, more complicated organic structures from simpler molecules.

Full course description for Organic Chemistry II Lab

CHEM 351 Physical Chemistry I

5 credits

This course introduces the concepts of thermodynamics. Topics include first law of thermodynamics, second law of thermodynamics, entropy, statistical mechanics, specific heat capacities of gases and solids, efficiency and the Carnot cycle, chemical potential, chemicals and phase equilibriums, etc. Applications explored will include the behavior of gases and the operation of heat engines. Laboratories emphasize real world applications of the concepts and problem solving skills taught in this course.

Full course description for Physical Chemistry I

CHEM 421 Medicinal Chemistry

3 credits

Medicinal chemistry allows the advanced chemistry student to explore the considerations of drug design and development as well as case studies on how different classes of therapeutic agents act in the human body. Topics include drug targets, drug sources, structure-activity relationships, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and the modern drug discovery pipeline. This class is suggested for those students intending to continue in health sciences.

Full course description for Medicinal Chemistry

CHEM 429 Biochemistry II: Bioenergetics, Metabolism, and Macromolecule Biosynthesis

3 credits

This course is the second of two-semester biochemistry lecture sequence and part of three lecture-lab biochemistry series. The series broadly cover the study of chemical processes in living organisms. In this course, students learn about the energy producing pathways of glycolysis, Krebs cycle, oxidative phosphorylation, and fatty-acid oxidation. Coverage will also include a discussion of how biosynthetic processes are controlled and integrated with metabolism of the cell as well as gene regulation and biochemical aspects of evolution. This course is intended for students majoring in chemistry and provides more extensive coverage of the subject than a student will get in a comprehensive/introduction to biochemistry course.

Full course description for Biochemistry II: Bioenergetics, Metabolism, and Macromolecule Biosynthesis

CHEM 469 Seminars in Chemistry

1 credits

This course develops critical analysis of primary scientific presentations by utilizing the many scientific seminar presentations offered in the Twin Cities Area. These presentations include those given by educational institutions such as Metropolitan State University and the University of Minnesota or public seminars given by area industrial speakers. The student chooses eight one-hour seminars to attend; for one presenter, the student conducts further analysis and writes a 5-7 page paper demonstrating how the currently presented research integrates with the presenters past work or the surrounding research community. This course can, with instructor permission, be taken more than once for credit. This course cannot be used to fulfill the General Education Goal III Natural Science requirement. This course may be used to fulfill the upper division credits for the Chemistry minor.

Full course description for Seminars in Chemistry

CHEM 489 Directed Research in Chemistry

1-5 credits

This is a faculty designed independent study (FDIS) which provides students the opportunity to do independent research in the field of chemistry under the supervision of a resident chemistry faculty member. This course improves students problem solving, analytical, and reasoning skills. At the end of the course, students complete a research report that must be approved by the instructor. The number of credits will be decided by the faculty and the student.

Full course description for Directed Research in Chemistry