Department of Chemistry Requirements for the M.S. Degree
A student needs to complete 30 credits and achieve an accumulative GPA of 3.0 or above to be awarded the Master of Science (M.S.) degree by the Graduate School. Half of the credits must be at the graduate level and 16 credits must be taken at the UW–Madison campus to satisfy the residency requirement.
The Department of Chemistry designates two types of M.S. degrees: a coursework-based M.S. degree and a research-based M.S. degree.
- A coursework-based M.S. degree requires a minimum of 22 credits in lecture courses. A maximum of 8 credits can be obtained in research courses (Chem 990). 24 of the 30 credits must be from the Department of Chemistry. Chem 901 and Chem 607 are required courses, but do not apply to the credit count. The Graduate School requirements also apply.
- A research-based M.S. degree requires a minimum 15 credits in research courses (Chem 990). The student must submit either a formal thesis or a research report that is approved by the research advisor. 24 of the 30 credits must be from the Department of Chemistry. Chem 901 and Chem 607 are required courses, but do not apply to the credit count. The Graduate School requirements also apply.
A full-time M.S. degree is typically completed in 3-4 semesters.
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Suggested Courses by Path
There are 7 paths in the chemistry department. Students usually chose a path according to their interest. The department recommends core and minor courses according to the student’s path of interest. The courses by path or interest can be found here.
Enrollment Credit Requirements
Fall and spring enrollment: Full load is 8 – 15 credits*; Minimum load is 2 credits.
Summer session: Full load is 4 – 12 credits; Minimum load is 0 credits.
Graduate students must be enrolled at least at the minimum requirement in the semester in which they receive a degree; master’s degree students expecting a summer degree must enroll in a minimum of 2 graduate credits in any summer session.
For additional information see the Graduate School Enrollment Requirements
Requesting a MS Warrant
When you are in the final semester of the MS degree, the Graduate School will need a warrant so they can issue your diploma.
Before requesting a warrant, please check all of your grades, if there is a temporary grade (NR, I, P), contact the professor who taught the course to change the grade. The Graduate School will not issue a warrant if you have temporary grades.
You can request the warrant any time during your last semester, but the Graduate School will not process the request until the end of the semester. Please request the warrant at least 3 weeks or more before the end of the semester.
To request your MS warrant, please fill out the form below.
The completion date for the MS degree requirements depends on the type of MS degree you are receiving below:
- Research MS:
- If you are completing a formal thesis or research report to meet the Research MS requirement, enter the “MS Degree Completion Date” as the date that your PI approves the written assignment as complete.
- Coursework MS:
- Enter the “MS Degree Completion Date” as the last day of classes for the academic term that you are completing your coursework for the Coursework MS.
The Chemistry Graduate Program Office will request to warrant from the Graduate School and email you when it has been submitted. When the Graduate School approves the request, you will receive an email that the request was approved with instructions on how to fill it out and where to return it.