Best Chemistry Schools In The World

Taking a Career path in Chemistry can be very challenging, but it can also be very rewarding most especially if you enroll in one of the best Chemistry Schools In the World.

Studying Chemistry can be very interesting just like other Physical science disciplines. The fact remains that chemistry is the intermediary between Physics and Biology.

As a high school student, if you loved STEM subjects, then chemistry is one of those courses you will enjoy in the university.

A career in Chemistry offers a huge number of opportunities. We want to link you with the 10 best Chemistry colleges in the world that offers degree programs.

What is Chemistry

According to Wikipedia, Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with elements and compounds composed of atoms, molecules, and ions: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during a reaction with other substances.

Brief History of Chemistry

From the historian record, the first modern chemist was Robert Boyle who lived from 1627 to 1691. He was the first to disagree with the Greek idea of four elements in his book The Skeptical Chymist, published in 1661.

The Evolution of Chemistry started with the work of Antoine Lavoisier, who developed a law of conservation of mass that demanded careful measurement and quantitative observations of chemical phenomena. 

Chemistry discipline is divided into five main branches, They are:

  • Organic chemistry
  • Inorganic chemistry
  • Analytical chemistry
  • Physical chemistry
  • Biochemistry

A scientist trained in the study of Chemistry is a Chemist. They study the composition of matter and carefully describe their properties in terms of quantities, with detail on the level of molecules and their component atoms.

One of the famous chemist Mario José Molina-Pasquel Henríquez a Mexican is known for his pivotal role in the discovery of the Antarctic ozone hole. He was a co-recipient of the 1995 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his role in elucidating the threat to the Earth’s ozone layer of chlorofluorocarbon gases.

Also, George McClelland Whitesides is an American chemist and professor of chemistry at Harvard University. He is best known for his work in the areas of NMR spectroscopy, organometallic chemistry, molecular self-assembly, soft lithography, microfabrication, microfluidics, and nanotechnology. 

Why Study Chemistry?

Chemistry is one of the top-rated science professions in the world and having a deep knowledge about it comes with a lot of benefits. Chemistry teaches useful skills such as logic, reasoning, and problem-solving. It also helps you make decisions about products.

A Career in chemistry may seem tough but it is highly rewarding. A graduate in Chemistry can work in chemical manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, food production, and biotechnology companies.

If you love science but you don’t consider chemistry as a career path, you can choose from other alternatives like Nursing ScienceEnvironmental science and Materials engineering

Where Do Chemist Work?

Chemists work in laboratories and offices. Their role is to conduct experiments and analyze their results. In addition to working in laboratories, materials scientists work with engineers and processing specialists in industrial manufacturing facilities. Their job functions include the following:

  • Interpreting and analyzing data in the laboratory.
  • Obtain and document quality assurance test data.
  • They troubleshoot and use instruments, equipment and software tools.

How Can I Become A Chemist?

Becoming a Chemist may seem a bit challenging because it cost a lot of time, money and effort. Below are the steps you need to take if you want to become a renowned Chemist and also earn good pay.

#1 Earn a Bachelor’s Degree

The minimum educational requirement for entry-level work as a chemist is a bachelor’s degree.

So, to become a chemist, you will undertake courses in inorganic and organic chemistry, biology, physics, mathematics, and computer science.

However, an undergraduate chemistry program provides you with basic practical knowledge in the fundamentals of chemistry and its subdisciplines.

Also, you can acquire the skills needed in the analysis of scientific data, the synthesis and measurement of chemical systems, and the formulation and testing of scientific hypotheses. 

#2 Obtain a Master’s Degree

During your undergraduate degree, you may want to consider participating in an internship program. This will help to acquire the skills you need to succeed as a chemist. (

Apparently, these skills will give you the opportunity to form professional relationships and obtain letters of reference against your graduate school program.

Basically, a master’s degree program in chemistry prepares you to work in advanced research and also teach at the college level, or pursue a Ph.D.

The Master’s program exposes you to bioinorganic chemistry, molecular spectroscopy, organometallic chemistry, quantum mechanics, and organic synthesis. 

#3 Earn a Graduate Degree

After earning your master’s degree, you can seek employment in basic or applied research.

Basically, the doctoral program focuses on a specific discipline, such as chemical biology, synthetic chemistry, and physical chemistry.

Therefore, students are required to participate in regular seminars, work as teacher assistants, and complete a doctoral dissertation. 

How Much Do Chemist Earn?

Data from PayScale shows that an entry-level Chemist with less than 1-year experience can expect to earn an average total annual Salary of $46,908.

Similarly, a Chemist with 1-4 years of experience earns an average total annual wage of $52,198 based on 2,212 salaries. A mid-career Chemist with 5-9 years of experience earns an average total salary of $60,274 based on 881 salaries.

Also, an experienced Chemist with 10-19 years of experience earns an average total salary of $66,296 based on 534 salaries. And, Chemist In their late-career earns an average total salary of $77,853.

What Is The Career Prospect Of A Chemist?

According to the US Bureau of Labour Statistics, the overall employment of chemists and materials scientists is projected to grow by 4% from 2018 to 2028, about as fast as the average for all occupations.

However, Chemists with an advanced degree, particularly those with a Ph.D., are expected to have better opportunities.

List Of Best Chemistry Schools In The World

We have created a list of 10 best programs in the latest 2023 University Rankings for Chemistry the world from the QS World University Rankings.  So, you can choose a school that fits your demands.

The basics of our selection of these schools are the ranking criteria and the number of Chemistry related programs offered by the schools. However, we also consider factors such as education quality, average earnings of graduates, accreditation, and several other relevant factors.

Below is the list of schools. You will have to read further to get information on the various degree programs offered, tuition info and program options for these schools.

  • University of California – Berkeley
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • University of Cambridge
  • Harvard University
  • Imperial College London
  • Northwestern University
  • Stanford University
  • ETH Zürich
  • University of Oxford
  • California Institute of Technology

1. University of California – Berkeley

UC-Berkeley is one of the best chemistry schools in the world. The school programs started in1868. The college of Chemistry comprises two main areas which are chemistry, and chemical and biomolecular engineering.

There is a lot of research equipment and facilities on campus that enable the student to perform their study in high-vacuum, high-pressure, low-temperature environments. There is also equipment for nuclear magnetic resonance and gas chromatography.

The school acceptance rate is 17% and the tuition is $18,178. According to US indicator ranking, UC-Berkeley ranks #22 in National Universities.

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2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

MIT focuses on scientific and technological research and is divided into five schools and is located outside Boston in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The institute started her chemistry programs in 1865 and has produced great Men like James Mason Crafts, Arthur Amos Noyes, and F. Albert Cotton.

One of the reasons MIT makes the list of the top Chemistry schools in the world is: The Department of Chemistry is loaded with varieties of equipment and facilities and tools to enable the student to carry out research.

MIT ranks #3 on theBest Colleges is National Universities according to the Us news indicator rankings. Its tuition and fees are $53,790. Additionally, the school acceptance rate is 7% and that shows how competitive the admission process is.

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3. University of Cambridge

Cambridge ranks the second-best university in the world according to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. 

The University of Cambridge Department of Chemistry has five specific research groups which are:

  • Materials chemistry research
  • Physical chemistry research
  • Synthetic chemistry research
  • Informatics research
  • Biological research

Each of these departments is well loaded with equipment, research tool, and facilities.

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Check out for University of Cambridge scholarship programs

4. Harvard University

Harvard University is not just one of the best Chemistry schools but also one of the top-ranked institutions in the world. The Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology is has various laboratories and research centers.

Some of the facilities include FAS Small Molecule Mass Spectrometry the X-Ray Laboratory, and the Magnetic Resonance Lab. The most amazing thing is Harvard’s department currently has four Nobel laureates serving in the department.

Due to the high standard of the school, the acceptance rate is 5% which makes gaining admission very difficult.

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5. Imperial College London

Imperial College ranks 9th in the world in the QS World University Rankings. The school focusing solely on science, engineering, medicine, and business.

Since Imperial College is a research Institution, more than half of the graduate students conduct research as part of their studies. The School offers some of the best undergraduate chemistry programs.

The Department of Chemistry has about 50 academic staff and 850 students, and 550 studying undergraduate courses and 300 research students.

Also, the department manages research facilities and technologies such as the Mass Spectrometry Laboratory and Molecular Instrumentation Center.

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6. Northwestern University

Northwestern University was founded in 1884 and has a total undergraduate enrollment of 8,231. The school offers some of the best chemistry programs available. Research centers like the Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence and the Institute for Sustainability and Energy are associated with the Northwestern Chemistry Department.

Data from the US News global ranking show that Northwestern University ranks #9 in the Best Colleges and National Universities. Its tuition and fees are $56,691.

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7. Stanford University

Stanford University ranks #6 in the Best Colleges and National Universities. The school offers tuition of $53,529 and is located in California. 

Stanford ‘s Chemistry Department focuses on instrumentation for analysis and spectroscopy.

The department is also well equipped with specialized technologies including Cary UV/Vis/NIR spectrophotometer, a Fluorolog 3 Fluorometer, and a Vertex 70 FTIR. This will help facilitates research and aids the smooth run of the chemistry Ph.D. programs of the schools.

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8. ETH Zürich

In 2018, ETH Zurich ranked 7th overall in the world by the QS World University Rankings. Also, in 2015, the school ranked 5th in the world in Engineering, Science, and Technology.

The college was founded in 1855 and the chemistry department has 55 research groups, five institutes, and several laboratories.

Also, the Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology has 10 Nobel laureates associations in the field of chemistry.

These researchers have received many recognitions for their work in the development of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and the stereochemistry of organic molecules and reactions.

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You may also like to explore the ETH Zürich Agriculture school.

9. University of Oxford

The Chemistry Departed in Oxford was established in 1860 and has a well-dedicated laboratory for learning and research. The department features 21 Nobel laureates.

According to, Michael Levitt, one of the laureates in the department recently got an award for his development of multiscale models for complex chemical systems. Also Venki Ramakrishnan in 2009 for his studies of the structure and function of the ribosome. stated that the early pioneer of chemistry Robert Boyle and his assistant Robert Hooke began working in Oxford in the mid-seventeenth century.

Oxford has a lot of research centers and facilities such as the Surface Analysis Facility, Centre for Advanced Electron Spin Resonance, and the X-ray Crystallography Facility.

Additionally, the college ranks #6 position for Best Global Universities for Chemistry according to the US news rankings.

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10. California Institute of Technology

California Institute of Technology has a total undergraduate enrollment of 948. According to the US News Global University rankings, the school ranks #12 in the Best Colleges is National Universities. Its tuition is $54,600.

The Institution Division of Chemistry and Chemical Science offers biochemistry and molecular biophysics programs. Also, the department has varieties of research centers.

Frances Arnold, a Nobel laureate in the department of chemistry, recently received an award. She is the first woman in the history of CalTech to win a Nobel Prize for any category.

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Becoming a Chemist may not take much time, but it requires dedication and hard work. Most Chemists often work in a lab setting. However, their role is to research, maintain and use various equipment and software tools utilized for chemical analysis and processing to solve problems.

There are so many institutions across the world that offer Chemistry programs. If you desire to become a chemist, you have to first earn a degree from an accredited school. After that, you enroll in a graduate program. You may need an advanced degree to gain more experience if you want to improve your earnings.

Frequently Asked Questions

What university has the best chemistry program?

Here are the best global universities for chemistry
Stanford University.
Tsinghua University.
Nanyang Technological University.
University of California Berkeley.
University of Science & Technology of China, CAS.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Northwestern University.
National University of Singapore.

Which Ivy is best for chemistry?

Dartmouth is the most science-oriented school out of all of the Ivy League schools, known for the Natural Sciences: biology, chemistry, and biology.

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