The Future of Graduate Education in the Chemical Sciences

The Future of Graduate Education in the Chemical Sciences

Business and Innovation Channel: Chemistry and the Economy Series

The education of doctoral level chemists has not kept pace with the major changes in the global economic, social, and political environment that have occurred since World War II, when the current system of graduate education took shape.  The 21st century’s first major analysis of the education of chemists was the focus of a report – Advancing Graduate Education in the Chemical Sciences– issued in December 2012.  Join this ACS Webinar to learn more about the report’s recommendations and the implementation steps that need to be taken.

Click here to view the slides from the presentation


Click here for the report: Advancing Graduate Education in the Chemical Sciences



Click here for Innovation in Graduate Education Challenge

Current Graduate Students Only- Deadline April 15, 2013

Winners will be recognized by NSF & receive prizes of $1000 to $3000!

In 1500 words, be sure to include:

  • The issue in graduate education you wish to address
  • Your solution or idea
  • How your idea will change graduate education




Webinar Details

Date: Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Time: 2:00-3:00 pm ET

Fee: Free



Meet Your Experts


Dr. Larry Faulkner is Chair of the ACS Presidential Commission on Graduate Education and President Emeritus, University of Texas at Austin. For over four decades, Dr. Faulkner served on the chemistry faculties of Harvard University, University of Illinois, and the University of Texas where he was also president from 1998 -2006.  He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and chaired the National Mathematics Advisory Panel.



Dr. Jacqueline K. Barton is the Arthur and Marian Hanisch Memorial Professor of Chemistry and Chair of the Division of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at the California Institute of Technology.  Professor Barton has pioneered the application of transition metal complexes to probe recognition and reactions of double helical DNA. Dr. Barton has received numerous awards, including the 2010 National Medal of Science from President Obama.



Dr. Bassam Z. Shakhashiri is the 2012 President of the American Chemical Society, the William T. Evjue Distinguished Chair for the Wisconsin Idea at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and former assistant director of the National Science Foundation for Science and Engineering Education.  He also founded and directs the Wisconsin Initiative for Science Literacy.  Shakhashiri’s scholarly publications include the multi-volume series, Chemical Demonstrations:  A Handbook for Teachers of Chemistry.  The Encyclopedia Britannica cites him as the “dean of lecture demonstrators in America.”



The Fine Print

ACS Webinars™ does not endorse any products or services. The views expressed in this presentation are those of the presenters and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the American Chemical Society.



6 Responses to “The Future of Graduate Education in the Chemical Sciences”

  1. Pratibha Varma-Nelson says:

    I am interested in this webinar but unable to attend due to a prior commitment.
    Will the webinar be available for viewing later?

  2. Dr. Louis Rebrovic says:


    Graduate and Undergraduate Educational Programs need to be more Industrially oriented. There is a significant lack of Chemical Engineering courses required and/or offered to the Chemical Science Majors. These are very necessary to the Chemical Scientist in order to be involved in Industrial Research. A Chemical Engineer can do a Chemical Scientist’s work in Industrial Research. But not necessarily the other way around. I have my PhD and BS in Chemistry and have had to learn some “seat of my pants” Chemical Engineering. It would have been helpful to have had some courses prior to my job experience.
    Also, Chemical Engineering has Co-Op requirements. They get industry experience that Chemists do not. This experience is a major plus for new graduates trying to get a job. Education through experience!
    And finally,I have had the great privilege of working with some of the most creative, intellegent and scientific minded Chemists in Industry. They have made major improvements to processes, new useful products, and made better products throughout their careers. Their science has definately improved the lives of many. C&E News has been woefully lacking in the coverage of these achievements. As a matter of fact, most people recieving any recognition are from Academia and Business. The work of Chemists goes public, generally through patents, so it is out there. It would help with Chemist hiring and salaries if our own society recognized their Industrial Members. Industry gives awards to Academic Chemists, how about Academia giving awards to Industrial Chemists?

    Louis Rebrovic, PhD

  3. admin says:

    Dear Pratibha – Yes the webinar is recorded and the slides along with the recording will be available in about a week. — ACS Webinars

  4. Jill Lyu says:

    Wait for this seminar with anticipation. Must agree with an industrial colleague that industry orientation is the key. If there is no industry no need to keep producing so many BS, MS or PhD chemists and chemical engineers. Academia with its present system of administering tenure (=stagnation, no matter which way one looks at it) and working hard to exclude those not desirable within the system is out of date with a modern world. It wasted resources and potentialities of many in our country. Report on Advancing Graduate Education in the Chemical Sciences is an odd, contradictory, daunting and political document.

    C&E News is disconnected. It is good for catching up on business and politics but not on TRUE achievements made. What are they? Academia has no mechanism in place to give anything to anyone yet Awards to Industrial Chemists.

  5. Andrew Ekstrom says:

    If we want students to be prepared for Industrial and Academic research, they need to take more math and stats classes. In particular, Design of Experiments should be a required course for EVERY chemistry student, regardless if they are graduate or undergraduate. The worst thing that can happen is that students get better results faster and are better prepared for life after lab.

    Another article in one of the ACS magazines said that chemists need to be more knowledgeable about statistical methods. This will help. It is a win-win, no brainer!

  6. admin says:


    Thank you for your comments.


    Erik Holderman
    ACS Webinars

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