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Meticulous Experimentation and Execution

CHEMISTRY

From developing the materials employed in the F-35—the Joint Strike Fighter—or extending the life of our aircraft fleet to understanding space sensor and satellite technology to analyzing chemical and biological warfare data, chemistry is at the forefront of Air Force research.

Our cadets are exposed to the fundamental chemical concepts underlying a myriad of research and application areas to include medicinal chemistry and drug testing; air, space and rocket propulsion; explosives formulation; nuclear and biological treaty compliance testing and so much more.

The three tracks in chemistry are recommended for those who are interested in chemical, biochemical, or advanced materials research and applications, or medical career fields. These chemistry tracks emphasize the use of the laboratory methods for reinforcement of lecture material and individual research projects. Learn more below!

The Chemistry major is accredited by the American Chemical Society.

POTENTIAL JOB ASSIGNMENTS
Within the Air Force
  • 61C – Chemist
  • 62EG – Developmental Engineer
  • 43A – Bioenvironmental Engineer
  • 11X – Pilot
  • 12X – Combat Systems Officer
  • Researcher in the Air Force Research Laboratory-High Explosive Research and Development Facility (HERD), Directed Energy Directorate, Aerospace Systems Directorate, or Materials and Manufacturing Directorate
Outside the Air Force
  • Lab Technician
  • Registered Nurse
  • Chemist

SAMPLE COURSES
  • Space Chemistry
  • Chemistry of Weapons
  • Chemistry of the Environment
  • Theoretical Organic Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
SUGGESTED COURSE SEQUENCE
4th CLASS YEAR (FRESHMAN) 3RD CLASS YEAR (SOPHOMORE) 2ND CLASS YEAR (JUNIOR) 1ST CLASS YEAR (SENIOR)
Beh Sci 110

Chem 100

Com Sci 110

English 111

Engr 101

For Lang 1

For Lang 2

History 100

Math 141

Math 142

Physics 110

Biology 210 (BioChem)

Chem 233

Chem 234

Chem 243

Econ 201

English 211

Engr Mech 220

Law 220

Math 243 or 245

MSS 200

Physics 110

Physics 215

Pol Sci 211

Aero Engr 315

Beh Sci 310

Biology 315 (Chem/Mat)

Biology Opt 1 (BioChem)

Chem 222

Chem 336

Chem 344 (Chem/BioChem)

Chem 440 (Mat)

Chem 481

Chem 482

Chem Conc 1 (Chem)

ECE 315

Engr Mech 340 (Mat)

History 300 (Chem/Mat)

Math 356

Philos 310

S/T E/S Opt Chem 335

Academy Opt – Chem 499

Astro Engr 310

Biology Opt (BioChem)

Chem 222

Chem 431

Chem 434 (Chem/Mat)

Chem 444 (Chem/Mat)

Chem 445

Chem 465 (Mat)

Chem 491 (BioChem)

Chem Conc 2 (Chem)

Chem Conc 3 (Chem)

ECE 315

English 411

Engr Mech 440 (Mat)

Mgt 400 or Mgt 419*

MSS 415/416

Soc Sci 412

* Mgt 419 is preferred.

All cadets are required to complete two semesters of general chemistry with lab, typically Chem 100 and Chem 200. Chem 110 can be taken as a substitute for Chem 200 for cadets with a strong chemistry background.

For full program requirements and course descriptions, download the current Curriculum Handbook.

DEGREE TRACKS

Chemistry Track
This option is the most flexible, allowing cadets to pursue courses of interest to further their knowledge in a particular chemical sub-discipline or provide an even broader introduction to chemical or other science concepts. This flexibility allows cadets to work in a variety of areas such as explosives research, aircraft and rocket propulsion, drug testing, nuclear and biological treaty compliance testing and much more.

Biochemistry Track
Biochemistry investigates the rapidly changing arena where chemistry, biochemistry, and molecular and cell biology interrelate. This provides an excellent foundation for cadets interested in medical school or research fields, such as medicinal chemistry, biopolymers, biosensors and nanoscience.

Materials Chemistry Track
Materials Chemistry is an interdisciplinary program designed to meet the Air Force’s need for qualified personnel with an understanding of modern materials, such as composites, ceramics, polymers, alloys, semiconductors, superconductors and nanomaterials. It bridges the gap between designing and developing materials at the molecular level and the physical application of these materials at the macro level for structural, electronic and optical uses.

VALIDATION AND TRANSFER CREDITS

Full transfer credit for both Chem 100 and Chem 200 is awarded to cadets who (a) complete two semesters of college chemistry with lab AND earn an A or B; (b) have their official college transcripts sent to the Academy; AND (c) scored well on our chemistry placement exam given during Basic Cadet Training. Qualifying cadets are not required to take any chemistry courses at the Academy to meet the core requirements.

Transfer credit for Chem 100 and placement directly into Chem 110 is given to:

  • Cadets who meet the two-semester requirement described above, but do not score as high on our placement test
  • Cadets who (a) complete one semester of college chemistry with lab AND earn an A or B; (b) have their official college transcripts sent to the Academy; AND (c) score well on our chemistry placement exam.

Cadets placed into Chem 110 will complete their core chemistry requirements upon passing Chem 110.

No transfer credit is awarded to cadets who don’t score well on our placement exam, regardless of previous course credits.

Transfer credit is also available for upper-level chemistry courses. Evaluation is made on a case-by-case basis.

CONTACT US

HQ USAFA/DFC
2355 Fairchild Drive, Suite 2N-225
United States Air Force Academy, CO 80840
(719) 333-2960 | DSN 333-2960
(719) 333-2947 | DSN 333-2947

WANT TO STUDY CHEMISTRY?