Chemistry (PHD)


Chemistry, PhD

On Campus 90 cr

Programs leading to a Ph.D. degree in Chemistry with areas of emphasis including analytical, bio-, inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry.


Students are also able to participate in interdisciplinary studies through the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Center for Materials and Nanoscience, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Center for Biotechnology, the University of Nebraska Center for Environmental Toxicology, and the University of Nebraska Cancer Center. The latter two programs run jointly between the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

The graduate program features a "Research First" approach where the focus is research-intensive in place of a coursework intensive focus the first year of study. Graduate students have the opportunity to experience research in action by selecting and joining rotation research groups their first year while also participating in some coursework.

The department is the sole occupant of Hamilton Hall, a modern nine-story building containing lecture halls, research and teaching labs, full-time glassblowing and electronics shops, a variety of modern research instrumentation, and the Nebraska Center for Mass Spectrometry.


  1. Bioinformatics
  2. Chemistry Teaching at the Postsecondary Level
  3. Environmental Studies

Applying for Admission

Standard requirements for all graduate programs

  • Application for Admission with $50 non-refundable application fee.
  • Transcripts (unofficial): Uploaded as part of application form.

    If International: Uploads must include all college- or university-level transcripts or mark sheets (records of courses and marks earned), with certificates, diplomas, and degrees plus certified English translations.

    After admission: Official documents are required from all students who are admitted and enroll. Photocopies of certified records are not acceptable. International students enrolled in other U.S. institutions may have certified copies of all foreign records sent directly to the Office of Graduate Studies by their current school’s registrar office.

  • If applicant’s native language is not English, verification of English proficiency is required.

    When sending TOEFL scores, our institution code is 6877 and a department code is not needed.

  • If applicant is not a US citizen and expects an F or J visa: financial information.
  • Applicants must also fulfill any additional requirements the department specifies at the time of application.

Additional requirements specific to this program

  • GRE General Test and GRE Subject Test: Encouraged but not required.
  • Resume/CV
  • Personal Statement: In two pages or less, this statement should describe your research interests, your motivation to pursue graduate study in chemistry, any relevant research or teaching experience, or anything else you would like us to know about you.
  • Other Upload (optional): You are welcome to upload any additional documents that you would like us to consider. You may wish to include abstracts, publications, documentation of special recognitions or certifications, or other similar supporting information. Provide this as a single PDF file of 10 MB or less. Do not duplicate documents uploaded elsewhere in this application.
  • Faculty: Identify up to four faculty members you are interested in working with.
  • Three recommendation letters.

Admission Application Deadlines

  • For international students: December 1 for Fall. September 15 for Spring.
  • For domestic students or international students currently attending a college or university in the us: December 1 for Fall. September 30 for Spring.

The Department of Chemistry encourages applicants to send all application materials as early as possible and prefers to receive applications by the deadlines listed above but will consider applications received after those dates depending on the availability of assistantships. Early registration will increase applicants' opportunities to get into their desired area of study and be awarded one of the program's premium fellowships



Graduate Chair

Rebecca Lai

Tuition & Fees
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The University of Nebraska does not discriminate based on race, color, ethnicity, national origin, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and/or political affiliation in its programs, activities, or employment.

UNL Graduate Chairs and staff please complete the program update form to provide edits. Updates to graduate program pages are made on an annual basis in conjunction with the Graduate Application for Admission.