Honours vs. Major
In the department of chemistry, as with most departments in the faculty of science, there are two streams of study; the Honours and Major Programs, each with their own distinct benefits. The major distinction between the two streams is the research component. In all Honours programs, CHEM 470 is required 6 credit research course where students are able to work with professors in the department of chemistry and are assigned a research project at the beginning of the course term. The term can last 8 months through the academic school year, September – April, or 4 months throughout the summer, May – August. Aside from the research component, Honours Chemistry students are required to take additional higher level courses, making the Honours program academically more rigorous. Since the credit count is higher for Honours programs compared to Major programs, it is more difficult to complete a minor. A benefit of the Major stream is the flexibility to take on a minor. Many students consider this path as chemistry is a central science and many other sciences can compliment nicely to your main studies.
Liberal Program in the Faculty of Science are designed to be more flexible than Majors or Honours. Students who choose a Liberal Core Science Component (CSC) in Chemistry will get solid foundation in each of the classic subdivisions of Chemistry, and then can choose to either the general option or the biological option for their advanced course work. Liberal programs must be paired with a breadth component, thus a Liberals student’s chemistry training will be complemented by substantial training in another field of Science by choosing a second CSC in the Faculty of Science, or a minor in either Arts or Science.
Since Chemistry is the central science, the minor is a great choice for pairing with almost any degree. Students are required to take at least one course in organic, inorganic, physical, and analytical chemistry, and then choose complementary courses from any of the 200 level or above Chemistry offerings. With this flexibility the minor can be completed by students from a variety of disciplines.
Arts & Science Program
The major concentration in Chemistry allows students in the B.A & Sc. Program to build a strong background in Chemistry by taking introductory courses in each of the classic subdivisions of chemistry, and then tuning their training by choosing complementary courses from all Chemistry course offerings for almost half their program. This program can therefore be used to specialize in one area by taking classes focusing on that part of chemistry, or to have broad scope of knowledge by taking a wide variety of courses.