Augustana College printing logo


A student at work in the biochemistry lab.

Biochemistry is an ideal line of study for the student interested in the chemistry of living things — that is the close examination of the molecules that carry out such functions as metabolism, movement, gene expression, etc.

This major, which includes courses in chemistry, biology, mathematics and physics, is offered through the chemistry department, which is certified by the American Chemical Society. Over the past 25 years, more than 65 percent of our chemistry graduates have gone on to pursue graduate degrees at major universities. All chemistry professors are actively engaged in research.

The department is well-equipped with all common bench-top chemistry instruments as well as high field liquid and solid-state NMR, SEM, and X-ray powder crystallography, all housed in a state-of-the-art $23 million facility.

Students are encouraged to take part in a research project either during the school year or summertime. This capstone experience is the cornerstone of our program.

The department also is committed to serving students who need a chemistry or biochemistry background to complete other majors and programs, including pre-medicine, pre-dentistry, pre-veterinary medicine, pre-physical therapy, pre-pharmacy, biology, geology and environmental studies.

The Senior Inquiry research project involves laboratory research with a professor on campus or 8-10 weeks at another institution during the summer. Every year, biochemistry and chemistry majors are among the students taking part in the prestigious Texas Medical Center Summer Research Internship Program.

Many biochemistry majors present their research at conferences such as the Argonne Undergraduate Research Symposium at the Argonne National Laboratories, the annual Sigma Xi meeting, and the annual meeting of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.