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Online Masters in Chemistry

Masters in Chemistry

Chemistry is the science of matter and the changes it goes through. While Physics also deals with matter with a largely fundamental and general approach, Chemistry is more specific by understanding the properties of atoms and molecules and chemical structures. An online Master’s in Chemistry Degree allows a Student to conduct original research in physical, polymer, analytical, organic, inorganic, and biochemistry. The degree also serves as a step towards pursuing a Ph.D. or gaining additional knowledge and experience for an industrial career. According to Data USA, the total Degrees awarded in Chemistry in 2017 was 22,597, growing at 3.44% and commanding an average wage of $110,040 across Chemistry-related jobs. A typical Program of online Master’s in Chemistry emphasizes research and coursework. At the end of the program, there are comprehensive examinations and submission of a research-based thesis. This guide contains detailed information on a Master’s in Chemistry online Program.

Featured Online Programs

Best Online Masters in Chemistry Programs

Chemistry Best Seal

The best online Master’s in Chemistry Programs offer a fair balance of several aspects of the course, such as the quality of teaching, subjects covered, duration of the program, experience of the faculty, infrastructure, curriculum, and cost. Awarding the best online Master’s in Chemistry Program to one, in particular, is therefore hard to accomplish, besides which some factors may be important for some students, while some others are vital to other Students.

However, based on all key aspects and factors that can peg a Master’s in Chemistry Online Program on to the ‘best list,’ we have prepared a Rankings Table:

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College Name & Address Tuition Graduation Rate
University of California, Berkeley
200 California Hall, Berkeley, California 94720
University of California, Los Angeles
405 Hilgard Ave, Los Angeles, California 90095
Harvard University
Massachusetts Hall, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138
Columbia Video Network
West 116 St and Broadway, New York, New York 10027
Stanford University
Stanford, California 94305
Princeton University
1 Nassau Hall, Princeton, New Jersey 08544
University of North Carolina-wilmington
601 South College Road, Wilmington, North Carolina 28403
Illinois Institute of Technology
10 West 35th Street, Chicago, Illinois 60616
Ohio university
020 Chubb Hall, Athens, Ohio 45701
University of Saint Joseph
1678 Asylum Avenue, West Hartford, Connecticut 06117

Source Integrated Post Secondary Education Data System & University Data
*Tuition rates are for in-state and per year. Program specific rates may apply.
**NA – data not available

Understanding Online Masters in Chemistry Programs

Traditional Masters in Chemistry Programs offered by Universities across the United States predominantly focus on two key areas – Coursework and Research Work – and have a fair amount of lab-related study. Online Master’s in Chemistry Programs make do with a similar structure. Still, coursework is mostly carried out online, with live classes, video classes, online discussion groups, and online seminars or workshops. Much of the research work is also online, but your presence is required for working in a lab, for practical sessions, and for hands-on learning.

Online Master’s in Chemistry Programs are broken down into Semesters or Quarters. Each Semester or Quarter contains theory lessons, practical sessions, group discussions, research, etc., during the first year. The second-year has very little to do with actual academics; it is spent mostly on research and writing a thesis based on that research. (Some Universities make do without a Thesis)

The biggest advantage of an Online Master’s in Chemistry Program is its flexibility for Students and working professionals. Depending on your background and experience, you can study at your own pace, rearrange the order of study and revisit topics you may find hard to understand. These advantages come to the fore if and when you choose to take up another program parallelly.

Online Masters in Chemistry Degree Types

Choosing an online Master’s in Chemistry degree is rather straightforward. There are two similar MS and M.Sc. Programs and an MA Program to choose from. Overall, the three Degrees broadly offer the same Subjects and Courses, but each one is unique in its own right.

MS Chemistry

An MS in Chemistry largely has two parts – Coursework and Research-work. In most cases, both parts are equally emphasized and culminate in a research-based Thesis being submitted. It must be noted that an MS in Chemistry is also a rather ‘hands-on’ degree with a fair amount of exposure in a Lab and acquiring practical experience in one. To apply for an MS Chemistry, you should have a Bachelor’s in any Science Subject, not just Chemistry.

M.Sc. Chemistry

MA Chemistry

An MA Chemistry, unlike MS Chemistry, is more theoretical. An MA Chemistry usually does not require research or a Thesis to be submitted at the end of the course but, in lieu, does require completion of additional course credits.

Specializations in Online Masters in Chemistry Programs

Specializations equip you with more teeth, strengthening your degree. An MS in Chemistry will require you to pick a concentration from a plethora of options. While choosing a specialization, one must bear in mind what career path one chooses and what interests one the most. For example, there is no sense in opting for, say Medical Biochemistry, if you are thinking of entering Petrochemicals.

Specializations in Online Master’s in Chemistry Programs include, but are not limited to:

  • Computational Chemistry
  • Photochemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Genetics
  • Nanomaterials
  • Quantum Mechanics

Some available Specialized Degrees are:

  • Medicinal Plant Chemistry Degree
  • Master’s in Biochemistry Online
  • Analytical Chemistry Online
  • Organic Chemistry Master’s Program
  • Inorganic Chemistry Master’s Program

Curriculum and Skills Gained in Online Masters in Chemistry Programs

The Curriculum and Syllabus of Online Master’s in Chemistry Programs are by and large similar. There are a few staple Subjects or courses and several electives one could choose from. Overall, this is what is largely covered in graduate-level Chemistry Courses online:

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Laboratory Safety
  • Molecular Modeling

The Syllabus includes, but is not limited to:

  • Thermodynamics
  • Bonding and Materials
  • Advanced Spectroscopy
  • Kinetics
  • Chemical Information and Communication

Some of the electives you can pick from are:

  • Advanced Separations
  • Bioanalytical Chemistry
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Advanced Organic Synthesis
  • Advanced Instrumentation and Analysis
  • Medical Biochemistry
  • Organometallic Reaction and Structures
  • Chemistry of Elements
  • Chemical Education
  • Energy and Environment

By the end of an online Master’s in Chemistry Program, you would have developed the ability to understand and articulate complex concepts in Chemistry and its subdivisions, such as Analytical Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry, Physical Chemistry, Biochemistry and so on. You would also be able to read and evaluate scientific literature and make critical assessments and observations of scientific ideas. The knowledge you gained from your degree could be used to identify complex industrial and research problems and examine ways and means of overcoming them, using your rationale, dealing with consequences, and underpinning conclusions.

Accreditation for Online Masters in Chemistry Programs

For the money one would spend for a Master’s in Chemistry, it would be a good idea to check if the program in question is accredited and accepted industry-wide. Several online Chemistry Degree Programs are accredited, which should always be preferred over ones that do not have any accreditation.  An accredited Program adds extra value to your degree. It makes it easier for you to seek jobs in addition to endorsing the extent of your knowledge on the subject of Chemistry and a specific sub-division of Chemistry. For example, the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC) issues standards and ensures compliance with Forensic Chemistry Programs’ standards.

Make sure you read more on accreditation before setting out to pick an online Masters in Chemistry program.

Timeline for graduation from Online Masters in Chemistry Programs

The timeline for graduation from online Master’s in Chemistry Programs is largely fixed at a standard 2 Years. However, depending on the university, program, concentrations, online classes, seminars, discussions, lab and research work, etc., this timeline can increase to about five years. Universities that allow such an extended duration require the degree to be completed well within the upper limit of 5 Years. There are almost no Universities that offer a part-time online Master’s in Chemistry program, as the course can be quite demanding as it is and requires a tight schedule and a good deal of lessons and research to be undertaken.

In the end, although an online Master’s in Chemistry Program brings with it the flexibility of time and location, the duration of the program is directly related to the pace at which you progress in your studies and research.

Online Masters in Chemistry Programs Admission Requirements

In general, online Master’s in Chemistry Programs’ admission requirements are not many. There is the usual basic requirement of submitting the Application Form and supporting documents such as transcripts, credentials, etc. Sometimes, additional requirements include references and/or essays (on the subject of Chemistry) to be furnished.

As for GPA, most Universities will admit Students with a GPA of 2.75 and above. Additionally, some may require a general GRE not older than five years; many do not require GRE at all.

Free Chemistry Masters Programs

Free Chemistry Master’s Programs are virtually non-existent. Since a Master’s in Chemistry requires trained and experienced faculty and a reasonably strict Program Schedule, online Programs are usually paid and not free. Of course, there are enough Chemistry courses that can give you a leg-up on the subject and help you in your professional studies, but these too do not award a complete Degree.

Several sites offer hundreds of Courses related to Chemistry. Many of these sites have free and paid content and issue a ‘Completion Certificate,’ which may or may not be of value for jobseekers. Here are a few you can check:

  • Open Culture – Open Culture has Chemistry courses online from several leading Universities. There are video lessons as well as audio lectures that can be downloaded for offline use. Most of the catalog contains Free courses.
  • Khan Academy – The popular Khan Academy offers Topics, Lessons, and Courses in Chemistry, but most suitable for basic to intermediate subjects. While it is hard to assess each course’s true depth, the portal’s Chemistry Library does a decent job of breaking the subject down, which could help while studying for an online Master’s in Chemistry.
  • Future Learn – Future Learn also offers Courses in Chemistry based on different sub-topics of the subject. While some of these may be free, most come with a subscription requirement to the site.
  • Coursera – There are some 129 results connected with Chemistry on Coursera; some are free, most are paid Courses. These Courses may be useful for studying specific Topics of Chemistry but are far from being an entire Master’s Program. Unfortunately, there are no Degrees on offer.

How to Pay for Online Masters in Chemistry Programs

Higher Education is, more often than not, an expensive affair across the United States. Data USA reports that the median in-state public tuition for higher education in Chemistry costs $6,888, growing at 3.04%, and median out-of-state private tuition costs $33,401, growing at 2.93%. To keep costs in check, students should explore avenues and options for external funding of their higher education in Chemistry.

Some available options to pay for online Master’s in Chemistry Programs are:

Online Masters in Chemistry

Program Funding

Universities offering online Master’s in Chemistry Programs sometimes allow you to break down the Tuition Fee into equated, incremental, or deferred payments.

Online Masters in Chemistry

Scholarships & Grants

Many Universities offer a Scholarship or Grant either from a bursary or in association with an organization. There is a fairly good chance for your tuition to be completed waived or at least partly funded.

Online Masters in Chemistry

Teaching or Research Assistantships

In return for working as a Teaching or Research Assistant at a University, you could be offered rebate tuition or a stipend that could help you balance out your tuition. Of course, your background should be suitable for such posts, and you should be willing to spend hours teaching/researching and pursuing your degree at the same time.

Online Masters in Chemistry

Employer Sponsorship/Reimbursement

If you are a working professional, you should check with the Firm that employs you for schemes they may have for higher education. Many companies offer to sponsor your Master’s Program or reimburse you in exchange for a stipulated duration of service.

Online Masters in Chemistry

FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)

FAFSA is a viable option to fund your Online Masters in Chemistry Programs. Check to see if you meet the application criteria while compiling all supporting documents required for processing your request.

Scholarships for Master’s in Chemistry Online Students

Before enrolling for an online Master’s in Chemistry Program, always check for available Scholarships and your eligibility to apply for them. There are very few independent Scholarships, but many Universities award Scholarships for a wide array of Programs. A Scholarship is based primarily on academic performance, past or planned research, and recommendations from Professors. In certain cases, you may be required to provide a ‘Statement of Career Goals’ as well. Here are a few Scholarships for you to explore:


Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) ProgramThe SCGSR Program offers outstanding US graduate students of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) supplemental awards through benefits and stipends of some $5,000. Application Deadline: May 05, 2021.


NSF Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Program (S-STEM)The S-STEM Program funds higher education institutions, which in turn award Scholarships to select eligible students. Students should enquire with the Institution’s Office for the availability of this Program and application requirements. Application Deadline: Varies.


ACS Scholars ProgramAmerican Chemical Society (ACS) offers Students studying Chemical Sciences or Chemical Technology renewable Scholarships of $5,000. Underrepresented minority students who want to enter the field of Chemistry too are eligible to apply. ACS awards over $1,000,000 in scholarship funds to 300+ students every year. Application Deadline: March 01, 2022.


Get Educated Online College ScholarshipDistant Learners and students of online Master’s Programs should check to see if they can access the ‘Get Educated Online College Scholarship of $1,000. Application Deadline: March 15 & October 15 every year.

FAQs about MASTERS Programs

Q: What is MA in chemistry?
A: A Master of Arts or MA in Chemistry is a more theoretical Professional Degree in Chemistry. It does not necessarily mandate the submission of a Thesis at the end of the program.
Q: What is MS Chemistry?
A: A Master of Science of MS in Chemistry is a more practical and research-oriental Professional Degree in Chemistry that lays equal emphasis on Coursework and Research work, culminating in a thesis to be submitted.
Q: Can you get a Chemistry degree online?
A: Yes, you can certainly get a Chemistry Degree online. However, you must ensure that the program you choose is credible and accredited for your degree actually to count.
Q: Are there on-Campus classes that I will have to attend?
A: Broadly speaking, no – you do not have to attend offline, on-Campus classes, as most of the instruction takes place online. However, your physical presence could be called for in exceptional cases, especially for practical or lab sessions and/or while doing your research.
Q: How much does an online degree cost?
A: Based on your choice of School, duration, specialization options, and the program in general, the cost of an online degree varies.
Q: Will I get a job with a degree I obtained online?
A: Certainly! Accredited Online Master’s Degrees are as good as standard, traditional Master’s Degrees and offer the same chances of a good career as the latter would.
Q: Is a Master’s in Chemistry worth it?
A: Just by virtue of being a subject of science, a Master’s in Chemistry has enough and more potential to start a new career, advance your present one or enter the exciting world of research. Graduates with a degree often go on to get good jobs and high pay-packets.
Q: What can you do with a Master’s in Chemistry?
A: There is a whole wide range of options for a Master’s in Chemistry graduate to choose from. While taking up teaching is a respectable and well-paying job, one could join the industry to solve complex Chemistry, Materials, and Substances, opt for research and try one’s hand at inventions, discoveries, and innovations.

Careers and Salary Outlook for Online Masters in Chemistry Graduates

An online Master’s in Chemistry, along with the chosen Concentration, can determine what sort of role would suit you in the job market. One could take up a role as a Data Scientist, Research Scientist, Researcher, and Chemist or even opt to work in Forensic Science or Applied Chemistry. Then there is the opportunity to further one’s studies by pursuing a Ph.D. in Chemistry or teaching in post-secondary environments.

Here are a few career options:

  1. Pharmaceutical Research
  2. Textiles
  3. Oceanography
  4. Material Science
  5. Medical Research
  6. Hazardous Waste Management
  7. Military Systems
  8. Petroleum and Natural Gas
  9. Plastics
  10. Pharmacology
  11. Chemical Engineering
  12. Environmental Science

Based on your choice of career, your salary would differ. For example, according to ‘,’ an Oceanographer’s median pay is $70,607 while the median is $123,763 for a Pharmaceutical Researcher.

Certifications and Licensing for Online Masters in Chemistry Graduates

Since Chemistry is a ‘detailed’ subject that one can break-down and specialize in a particular subdivision of the subject, most institutes, industries, and governments alike look for certification and/or a license, along with your degree. Many Universities tie-up with independent agencies to assess and evaluate their Programs based on certain criteria and are approved to be in a nationally recognized list of Chemistry Programs if met. There are several certifications and licensing for online Masters in Chemistry graduates, one of them being the American Chemical Society Certification.

It is best to check for a License or Certificate that will make your Chemistry Graduate Certificate Online Degree complete and one that is specific to your chosen field or career. For example, working with Pharmaceutical Companies or Petrochemical Companies may require you to be certificated from agencies/bodies approved by these Companies.

Additional Resources for Chemistry Professionals

Chemistry may sound like a confined Subject, but in reality, it is a vast one, spanning several sub-fields and industries. Since much of Chemistry development is based on research, it is essential to interact with other Scientists in this or relevant fields and be part of the Chemists’ community. After your online Master’s in Chemistry, joining a community of fellow Chemistry Professionals allows you access to ideas, theories, laboratories, research papers, and much more – enhancing your knowledge while keeping you up to date with the latest in Chemistry. Tap into journals, attend live and online Seminars, find out where the next Workshops will take place, and more, though some of these:

  • American Chemical Society (ACS): American Chemical Society is a go-to portal for Students and Professionals of Chemistry. The site offers a wealth of information apart from showcasing events, exploring careers, and working with Chemistry forums and communities.
  • Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC): Royal Society of Chemistry is a membership-based online resource with Chemistry-related journals, books, communities, and events.
  • ChemSpider: Associated with RSC is ChemSpider that defines itself as a ‘free chemical structure database providing fast text and structure access to over 100 million structures from hundreds of data sources.
  • American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE): An interesting resource for Chemical Engineers is the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE), which offers journals, industry news, publications, technical groups, and more.

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