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Chemistry for the Life Sciences Sequence


Overview

In 2016, the University of Minnesota Department of Chemistry began to offer a 3-course 13-credit Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence created upon the College of Biological Sciences’ request. The courses were developed in collaboration to provide a three-semester focused and accelerated chemistry sequence for the life sciences which ensures that the critical concepts in chemistry are included. In reducing content that is less central to the life sciences, the sequence allows students to progress through the chemistry content most critical to be successful in their domains, as well as engage in more advanced coursework.

We encourage health programs and admissions professionals to review the following letter from Associate Dean Parker to learn more about this accelerated chemistry course sequence and how it fits into your application prerequisites. More information is below in course descriptions and syllabi. 

Letter from Associate Dean Parker

Students who are deciding between enrolling in the Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence or the traditional chemistry sequence should review our Frequently Asked Questions for Students Deciding between Sequences.


Chemistry for the Life Sciences Course Descriptions + Syllabi

  • CHEM 1081/1065: Chemistry for Life Sciences I and Lab (3 credits lecture, 1 credit lab): Similar to traditional first-semester general chemistry courses, this pairing is paced more quickly, covering content from general chemistry I and moving on to content typically covered in a second semester of general chemistry. Chemistry 1081 Syllabus | Chemistry 1065 (Lab) Syllabus
  • CHEM 1082/1086: Chemistry for Life Sciences II and Lab (3 credits lecture, 1 credit lab): These courses complete general chemistry education and begin layering organic chemistry content. Chemistry 1082 Syllabus | Chemistry 1086 (Lab) Syllabus
  • CHEM 2081/2085: Chemistry for Life Sciences III and Lab (3 credits lecture, 2 credits lab): This final semester focuses exclusively on remaining organic chemistry content and its application. Chemistry 2081 Syllabus | Chemistry 2085 (Lab) Syllabus
  • BIOC 3022 - Biochemistry for the Life Sciences (3 credits lecture): Designed as the fourth semester after the three-semester chemistry sequence, our re-envisioned biochemistry course capitalizes on the knowledge built in the sequence to teach more in-depth and cutting edge biochemistry as relates to the life sciences. This course provides an introduction to biochemistry including discussion of the structure and functions of biomolecules (proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids), central metabolic pathways, and the mechanisms of enzyme action. This course is for students in the College of Biological Sciences who have completed BIOL 3020. Biochemistry 3022 Syllabus
Additional Chemistry Coursework Options

Some health programs indicated they would like students to complete additional coursework to meet chemistry prerequisites. If you are planning to apply to a program that has requested additional chemistry coursework, see below for course options available at the University of Minnesota. We encourage you to consult the spreadsheets below and get in touch with health programs of interest to determine the best fit for your prospective programs. 

  • Chemistry 3101 - Introductory Analytical Chemistry Lecture (3 credits, lecture): Methods/concepts of measurement by chemical/instrumental analysis, including titrimetry, quantitative spectrophotometric analysis, chromatographic separations, equilibrium/rate methods. Chemistry 3101 Syllabus
  • Chemistry 4411 - Introduction to Chemical Biology (3 credits, lecture): Chemistry of amino acids, peptides, proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, and nucleic acids. Structure, nomenclature, synthesis, reactivity. Techniques to characterize biomolecules. Chemistry 4411 Syllabus
  • Chemistry 4601 - Green Chemistry (3 credits, lecture): Survey key aspects of green chemistry in modern research and development both in academia and industry, as well as relevant implications for the environment, technology, and public policy. Chemistry 4601 Syllabus

Additional questions from Health Proessional Schools can be directed to cbsugrad@umn.edu


CBS Outreach to Health Professional Schools

The University of Minnesota Medical School, College of Pharmacy, College of Veterinary Medicine, Genetic Counseling Program, Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Program, and Medical Laboratory Sciences (MLS) Program have agreed that they will accept the Chemistry for the Life Sciences series to satisfy their course prerequisites, and they have all provided us with written documentation of this agreement.

Additionally, CBS performed extensive outreach to health professional schools and programs around the country to educate them on CBS's Chemistry for the Life Sciences course sequence. The College received positive feedback on its curriculum and its relevance to their health professions. CBS gathered the information below from health professional programs about how the Chemistry for the Life Sciences course sequence would fit into their chemistry prerequisites for admission. Use the information provided as a starting point. For the most up to date prerequisite requirements, please contact individual schools directly.*

  • Medical Schools
    The most common medical schools that CBS students apply and matriculate to accept the Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence to fulfill their prerequisites for admission. For information about specific medical schools, please review this spreadsheet
  • Dental Schools
    Many dental schools across the country accept the sequence to fulfill admission prerequisites. A few institutions have asked students to take an additional chemistry course to meet their chemistry credit requirements. In these situations, the additional course does not need to be complete by the time you apply, but by the time you start the program. Students should review policies for each of their prospective programs. For information about specific dental schools, please review this spreadsheet
  • Pharmacy Schools
    Many pharmacy schools across the country accept the sequence to fulfill admission prerequisites. A few institutions have asked students to take an additional chemistry course to meet their chemistry credit requirements. In these situation, the additional course does not need to be complete by the time you apply, but by the time you start the program. Students should review policies for each of their prospective programs. For information about specific pharmacy schools, please review this spreadsheet
  • Physician Assistant Programs
    Many physician assistant programs to which CBS students apply accept the Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence to fulfill their prerequisites for admission. For information about specific physician assistant programs, please review this spreadsheet
  • Veterinary Medicine Programs
    Many veterinary medicine programs CBS students apply to accept the Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence to fulfill their prerequisites for admission. For information about specific veterinary medicine programs, please review this spreadsheet
  • Osteopathic Medicine Programs
    Many osteopathic medicine programs have indicated that the Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence will fulfill their prerequisites for admission. For information about specific osteopathic medicine programs, please review this spreadsheet
  • Genetic Counseling Programs
    Many genetic counseling programs CBS students apply to accept the Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence to fulfill their prerequisites for admission. For information about specific genetic counseling programs, please review this spreadsheet
  • Optometry Programs
    Many optometry programs CBS students apply to accept the Chemistry for the Life Sciences sequence to fulfill their prerequisites for admission. For information about specific optometry programs, please review this spreadsheet

*The College of Biological Sciences is not responsible for updating and maintaining this information. At any given time, a program may change its prerequisites without prior notification. A student should independently confirm the admissions requirement for each individual professional school by consulting directly with the health professional school. 


Resources for Students

Students preparing to apply to health professional school after completing Chemistry for the Life Sciences coursework are encouraged to review the resources we offer to support you in your application process. 

  • We encourage you to review the specific admission requirements of your prospective schools. Many institutions have distinct curricula, and students are sometimes asked to provide additional information during the application process. Please share this website (z.umn.edu/cbschemistry) with admissions contacts from different institutions to ensure your coursework fulfills prerequisites.
  • Application Webinar - View this webinar to learn how you will enter your coursework in the Centralized Application Services (CAS) application system for each health profession. 
  • Letter from Dean Parker - This letter from Associate Dean Parker provides information about the accelerated chemistry course sequence and explains how the sequence fits into the application prerequisites. It can be provided to programs that still have some questions about your course sequence. 
  • FAQs for Students Getting Ready to Apply

Contact Us

The CBS Student Services office can help you navigate your next steps! Call 612-624-9717 or email cbsask@umn.edu

CBS Academic Advisors can help with questions related to degree planning and registering for courses, including additional chemistry courses communicated by some programs. 

CBS Career Coaches can help with pre-health career planning, application support, and additional clarification with information on health professional school requirements.

>> Schedule an appointment by visiting cbsss.appointments.umn.edu