An image of molecules and atoms
Doctor of Philosophy

About the Program

The formula you need to advance the frontier of scientific research lies with a PhD in Chemistry from Case Western Reserve University. Over the course of five to seven years, you’ll participate in state-of-the-art research and collaborate closely with renowned faculty who are dedicated to your success. Here, you’ll build a strong foundation for a career in chemistry, areas allied with chemistry and chemical management. You’ll be in your element at CWRU, one of the top research universities in the U.S. 

What to Expect

This program boasts small class sizes, ensuring one-on-one mentoring with faculty and collaborative learning and research with your peers. Plus, you’ll have financial support—all PhD students are guaranteed support for up to five years, whether that’s a stipend, a teaching or research assistantship, or paid full tuition and health insurance.

With access to cutting-edge instrumentation and more than 60 core research facilities, you’ll leave this program with the knowledge and skills to create a lasting impact on society. Past graduates have landed career opportunities with California Institute of Technology, Stanford University, University of Chicago, Air Force Research Laboratory, St. Jude Children’s Hospital and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, to name a few. Where will your PhD in chemistry take you? 

I really like the camaraderie and the collaboration with students and colleagues in the department and also across the university. The collaboration barrier seems much less here than at other universities, making it easier to find other talented people to work with.

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Beyond the Classroom

During your first year, you’ll be paired with a research advisor by becoming acquainted with our faculty and their current and projected research activities. They'll be your principal mentor regarding course selection, preparation for examinations, conduct of research, composition of the thesis and professional placement. Under their supervision, you’ll work toward your degree with original research—inside and outside of the lab—that will culminate in the presentation and defense of the doctoral dissertation (thesis). 

You’ll experience no shortage of inspiration while studying in Cleveland, with several world-class institutions surrounding you. The Cleveland area is home to Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals, Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, Great Lakes Energy Institute, NASA Glenn Research Center and many other notable institutions. 

By the Numbers


core research facilities


of recent graduates have postdoctoral research positions


of recent graduates work in the industry


faculty-to-student ratio


years to complete the program

Admission Requirements

A bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biochemistry, or related field is needed for admission. When reviewing your profile for admission consideration, we require the following:

  • Online application
  • Personal and educational information
  • Personal statement
  • Three recommendations
  • Unofficial transcripts
  • Resumé or CV
  • Chemistry supplemental (to be filled out with your area of interest)
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores (for international students only)

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