Undergraduate

Chemistry (Extended Major)

The Chemistry extended major combines all aspects of the single majors in chemistry which include synthetic chemistry and physical analytical chemistry.

Careers and further study

This course opens up a world of future study pathways and career options.

Career Pathways

Chemistry at UWA produces highly employable graduates for jobs in Western Australia, nationally and internationally. UWA is Western Australia’s top ranked University, and a member of Australia’s Group of Eight Universities. This means UWA graduates with a Chemistry degree are widely recognised, and our graduates are highly sought-after by employers including:

Companies in WA’s (*) two biggest industries:

  • Mining (e.g. BHP*, Chevron*, Woodside*, Rio Tinto*, Alcoa*, Shell*, Fortescue*)
  • Agriculture (e.g. Wesfarmers*, CSBP*)

Other industries:

  • Pharmaceutical and biotech companies like ‎Pfizer*, Perrigo* and Epichem*.
  • Chemical and environmental analysis companies like MPL laboratories* and SGS*
  • Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)*
  • Top-ranked International Universities


Our graduates also embark on careers in teaching, marketing, sales, and patent law with a company or government department. A UWA degree with a major in Chemistry is your ticket to an exciting and rewarding career with diverse and interesting pathways. 

UWA’s research-led teaching will provide you with state-of-the-art scientific knowledge and high level problem solving skills.

The chemical industry is seeking graduates who are specialised in chemistry, but with diverse skill sets. UWA’s unique degree structure sets us apart from other Western Australian universities to train graduates for these jobs.

At UWA, right from first year, you have the opportunity to tailor your degree to suit your interest and goals. For example, it is possible to do a major in chemistry with a second major in biochemistry/molecular biology, or genetics, pharmacology, or neuroscience, or psychology, or management. In addition, at UWA you may specialise in either synthetic chemistry or physical analytical chemistry, or pursue both streams in a Chemistry extended major. You can use your personal interests as a basis for your choice of subjects to study, and, ultimately, to direct your career.

At UWA, like at other universities, you will learn all the required skills and knowledge you need to set off on a career as a chemist in industry or a government organisation. However, as Western Australia’s top university for Physical Sciences including Chemistry, UWA is exclusively placed to provide you with the more diverse skill set you will need to become a leader in the field. This could be in industry as a Chief Technology Officer or Chief Executive Officer, as the founder of your own start-up company, a research theme leader at CSIRO, or as a Professor at a university.

In combination, these factors mean a UWA Chemistry major can launch a career focussed on solving humanity’s greatest challenges:

  • Understanding and adapting to climate change
  • Disease pandemics like COVID19
  • Providing food and water for the world’s ever-growing population
  • Extending and improving quality of life through medicine
  • Sustainable energy production
  • Providing the materials that modern society depends on, and that underpin the next technological innovations
  • Preserving our planet’s amazing biodiversity

Chemistry at UWA produces highly employable graduates for jobs in Western Australia, nationally and internationally. UWA is Western Australia’s top ranked University, and a member of Australia’s Group of Eight Universities. This means UWA graduates with a Chemistry degree are widely recognised, and our graduates are highly sought-after by employers including:

Companies in WA’s (*) two biggest industries:

  • Mining (e.g. BHP*, Chevron*, Woodside*, Rio Tinto*, Alcoa*, Shell*, Fortescue*)
  • Agriculture (e.g. Wesfarmers*, CSBP*)

Other industries:

  • Pharmaceutical and biotech companies like ‎Pfizer*, Perrigo* and Epichem*.
  • Chemical and environmental analysis companies like MPL laboratories* and SGS*
  • Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)*
  • Top-ranked International Universities


Our graduates also embark on careers in teaching, marketing, sales, and patent law with a company or government department. A UWA degree with a major in Chemistry is your ticket to an exciting and rewarding career with diverse and interesting pathways. 

UWA’s research-led teaching will provide you with state-of-the-art scientific knowledge and high level problem solving skills.

The chemical industry is seeking graduates who are specialised in chemistry, but with diverse skill sets. UWA’s unique degree structure sets us apart from other Western Australian universities to train graduates for these jobs.

At UWA, right from first year, you have the opportunity to tailor your degree to suit your interest and goals. For example, it is possible to do a major in chemistry with a second major in biochemistry/molecular biology, or genetics, pharmacology, or neuroscience, or psychology, or management. In addition, at UWA you may specialise in either synthetic chemistry or physical analytical chemistry, or pursue both streams in a Chemistry extended major. You can use your personal interests as a basis for your choice of subjects to study, and, ultimately, to direct your career.

At UWA, like at other universities, you will learn all the required skills and knowledge you need to set off on a career as a chemist in industry or a government organisation. However, as Western Australia’s top university for Physical Sciences including Chemistry, UWA is exclusively placed to provide you with the more diverse skill set you will need to become a leader in the field. This could be in industry as a Chief Technology Officer or Chief Executive Officer, as the founder of your own start-up company, a research theme leader at CSIRO, or as a Professor at a university.

In combination, these factors mean a UWA Chemistry major can launch a career focussed on solving humanity’s greatest challenges:

  • Understanding and adapting to climate change
  • Disease pandemics like COVID19
  • Providing food and water for the world’s ever-growing population
  • Extending and improving quality of life through medicine
  • Sustainable energy production
  • Providing the materials that modern society depends on, and that underpin the next technological innovations
  • Preserving our planet’s amazing biodiversity

Salary Information

As a chemist, you can expect an annual salary of $108,000 (+ bonus) as the average across all industries and experience levels, with a salary growth of 2.1% per year. The average entry level salary of scientists commences at $75,000 and ranges up to $130,000 for experienced workers.

This course could lead to these

Career Opportunities

Alt content Biochemist/ Molecular Biologist Alt content Chemist Alt content Agricultural Scientist Alt content Biotechnologist
This course could lead to these

Further Study

Chemistry is central to all areas of modern science and technology, providing a foundation for fields such as biochemistry, green chemistry, chemical engineering, food science, materials science, geology, nanotechnology and pharmacology. By undertaking honours in Chemistry, you will develop an understanding of the research process and your abilities to conduct independent research. You will acquire training and practice in skills such as experimental methods, problem solving, literature searching, data analysis, computing, team building, and written and oral communication.

Chemistry is central to all areas of modern science and technology, providing a foundation for fields such as biochemistry, green chemistry, chemical engineering, food science, materials science, geology, nanotechnology and pharmacology. By undertaking honours in Chemistry, you will develop an understanding of the research process and your abilities to conduct independent research. You will acquire training and practice in skills such as experimental methods, problem solving, literature searching, data analysis, computing, team building, and written and oral communication.

Fees and scholarships

Learn more about the fees that apply to you for this course. For fee type definitions and further assistance, see the Fee Calculator Help page. You can also search our database for scholarships that are relevant to you or this course

Scholarships

Scholarships are available to students from a diverse range of backgrounds, including academic achievement, financial need, educational disadvantage, leadership and community service, artistic or sporting achievements, and being from a rural or remote area.

Cost of living

There are a few things to consider before applying to study at university. One could be your cost of living. This can depend on factors such as lifestyle, accommodation, tuition fees, medical insurance, textbooks and more. For an indication of expenses and average costs, see our Cost of living page.

Admission requirements

The University of Western Australia welcomes applications from international and domestic school-leavers, mature-age applicants and those with previous tertiary study. If you’re interested in studying this major, find out the admission details below.

Admission requirements

For applicants with recent secondary education, information on admission criteria is available on our entry standards page.

Mathematics requirement

This major requires a certain level of Mathematics. If you do not meet this level, you may be able to take additional Mathematics units in your first year to satisfy this requirement.

WACE prerequisite: Mathematics Methods ATAR and Chemistry ATAR

ADMISSION REQUIREMENT

English competency

English is the language of instruction and assessment at UWA and you will need to meet the English language requirements of the University to be eligible for a place.
ADMISSION REQUIREMENT

How to apply

Ready to apply for this course? Follow the steps and you’ll be on your way to joining us at UWA.

Course details

Chemistry describes the structure and properties of matter and its transformations, and is central to virtually all areas of modern science and technology. The Chemistry extended major combines aspects of synthetic chemistry and physical analytical chemistry. Students will gain the specialist and general skills they need to build secure, satisfying and productive careers in multiple areas of science.

About the course

The Chemistry extended major combines aspects of multiple chemistry disciplines and provides students with the specialist and general skills they need to build secure, satisfying and productive careers.

Chemistry (Extended Major)

Quick details

Status
  • Available 2021
Locations
  • Perth (Crawley campus)
Attendance
  • Full-time
  • Part-time
Delivery
  • On-campus
Starting dates
  • Semester 1, Semester 2
Level of study
  • Undergraduate
Course Code
  • MJD-CHMEM
  • This course is not available to international student visa holders
Chemistry (Extended Major)
Status
  • Available 2021
Locations
  • Perth (Crawley campus)
Attendance
  • Full-time
  • Part-time
Delivery
  • On-campus
Starting dates
  • Semester 1, Semester 2
Level of study
  • Undergraduate
Course Code
  • MJD-CHMEM
  • This course is not available to international student visa holders
Full time/part time duration
  • 3 years (BChem), 4 years (BSc[Hons])
TISC Codes
Honours Available
  • Yes
Degrees course is available in
  • Bachelor of Chemistry
  • Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours)

Why study this course

  • It’s taught by experts and award-winning academic staff, covering all the fields of synthetic, physical and analytical chemistry, including inorganic and organic chemistry, organometallic chemistry, catalysis, medicinal chemistry, biological chemistry, materials science, theoretical and computational chemistry, spectroscopy, materials and nanotechnology, surfactant and polymer chemistry, environmental chemistry, materials science, nanotechnology and education
  • Wide and comprehensive laboratory experience is offered throughout all levels of this double major, covering all fields of chemistry
  • There is a high demand for chemistry graduates in a variety of industries

You'll learn to

  • understand the properties of atoms and molecules, and their reactivity
  • develop experimental skills for working safely with chemicals
  • solve chemical problems including the calculation of yields, dilutions and stoichiometry in chemical reactions, theory and practical methods for creating new molecular structures. Elucidate chemical and structural problems using both theoretical calculations and analytical measurements
  • realise the historical role chemistry has played in the developing world and identify the unfolding picture in the future of chemistry as a central science
  • demonstrate knowledge in chemical kinetics, thermodynamics, spectroscopy, equilibria and the properties of many classes of compounds and a vast range of materials reaction. Understand reaction mechanisms, chemical kinetics, chemical reactivity and the properties of many classes of compounds and materials

Course Structure

Our undergraduate degrees offer you a broad range of options allowing you to combine subjects in a way that matches your career goals and personal interests.

Student story

Travis Holden

Student story
Travis Holden

Work Integrated Learning

  • You'll be taught by lecturers from industry (e.g. CSIRO, Alcoa, Epichem) allowing you to connect with professionals in the field and gain industry connections even before you graduate
  • Gain real-world, practical experience through site visits to industry
  • Hands on practical experience and opportunities are available for projects in labs embedded in Level 3 units

Learn from leaders in the field

Work alongside world-leading academics who are passionate and engaged. Our academics are at the cutting-edge of knowledge, meaning you’ll be across live research projects and will uncover new discoveries in your field of interest before others.

Facility

Bayliss Building

Interior of Bayliss Building

Cutting-edge facilities enable world-class research and study

Facility