Saint Louis University

Chemistry | Doctor of Philosophy Degree


The Department of Chemistry provides graduate education leading to master’s degrees with and without a research emphasis and Ph.D. degrees. The department houses traditional degree specializations of analytical, inorganic, organic, physical, or biological chemistry, with cross-disciplinary activity encouraged. Active research groups involving graduate students include analytical and physical chemistry, synthetic and materials chemistry, and in environmental and biological chemistry. These research groups regularly publish their work in top-ranked journals and faculty and students present their work at national and international conferences. Most of the research is externally supported by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Petroleum Research Fund, and the Research Corporation among others.

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Application Deadline for Beginning Term The Application Package Apply Online
Summer: Jan. 15 (International: Jan. 15) Three (3) Letters of Recommendation; GRE G (International Applicants only); Resume; Goal Statement; Interview (desired);
Three (3) Personal Potential Index evaluations are optional.

(Advantages of the web application)
Fall: Jan. 15 (International: Jan. 15)
Spring: Oct. 1 (International: Oct. 1)
E-mail: chemdept@slu.edu
Tel. No.: 314.977.2850
Chair: Steven Buckner, Ph.D.
Graduate Program Dir.: Dana Baum, Ph.D.


The Personal Potential Index (PPI) is optional to add to your completed application for admission. Visit SLU's page about the PPI evaluations or go to The ETS page to learn more about the PPI.

Required Additional Application Materials for International Students

Check our English Proficiency Policy page for specific TOEFL and IELTS score requirements. You may also visit our international prospects, applicants and students page for more information about international application requirements.

Applicant Criteria

  • GPA and TOEFL (if applicable) scores considered
  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university, usually in chemistry or biochemistry, although other science majors will be considered.
  • A minimum of 18 semester hours (minimum 2.8 GPA) of upper division undergraduate chemistry courses including, organic chemistry (2 semesters), quantitative analysis (1 semester) and physical chemistry (2 semesters) would normally be required for admission. Students who do not meet these criteria may complete these prerequisites as part of their graduate program, though not for graduate credit.
  • Students who have not completed equivalent coursework in upper level undergraduate inorganic (CHEM 413) and Instrumental Analysis (CHEM 420) will also be required to complete these courses, but they can be taken for departmental graduate credit.

Chemistry Application Review Process: Three-person committee votes to accept or reject applicants.

Admission Statistics: One-half of all graduate students will seek a terminal degree at the Master's level; One-half will pursue Ph.D.

Honors | Recognitions | Rankings: Since 1941, the Department's Bachelor of Science has been approved for Professional Training by the American Chemical Society. Their certification has been continuous.

Credit Hours/Coursework: A total of 60 credit hours will be required with 12 hours coming from dissertation research credits. An appropriate coursework track will be developed by the student and mentor and approved by the Graduate Program Director and/or the Department Chair. | Chemistry Ph.D. Degree Requirements page

Program Description: The Ph.D. degree offers specialization in analytical, inorganic, organic, or physical chemistry. It is a 39 hour program that includes 12 hours of core curriculum (Synthesis & Materials Chemistry and Analytical & Physical Methods), 9 hours of research courses, at least 6 hours of electives, and 12 hours of dissertation research -- culminating in the production of a dissertation. | Chemistry Graduate Courses

Career Possibilities: Pharmaceutical Scientist, Crime Lab Analyst, Environmental Chemist, Fuels and Materials Scientist, Academic Researcher

About the Chemistry Faculty: Applicants will seek out SLU Faculty with similar Chemistry research disciplines. | Chemistry Faculty Site

Scholarships & Financial Aid: Over 35 graduate assistants in the department. All research-based graduate students are funded. | Student Financial Services at SLU

Program Highlights: Most graduates will teach, some pursue post-doctoral studies, some pursue careers with the FDA; Department utilizes state-of-the-art lab equipment.

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