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Biochemistry, BS

Seattle University's Chemistry Department offers Chemistry and Biochemistry majors, to prepare students for careers including pharma, biotech, and medicine.

About this Program

Make a Difference in a Range of Careers with a Biochemistry Major

At Seattle University’s Chemistry Department, you’ll learn to think, conduct experiments and write like a scientist. When you major in biochemistry, you’ll be joining a diverse community of students and faculty who are passionate about sharing and expanding what we know about the molecular details of life.

Innovative Faculty and Hands-On Classes

Our focus on undergraduate education means you get high-quality instruction in every course.

For example, Dr. Whidbey was awarded the College of Science & Engineering 2022 Outstanding Teacher Award in recognition of his teaching innovations in ‘Theory and Methods of DNA Analysis’. In this course, students use state-of-the-art Whole Genome Sequencing to study novel bacteria.

Thanks to our nationally recognized faculty, you’ll have the scientific skill and professional support to succeed in a career in the chemical sciences, medicine, forensics, environmental protection, biotechnology or public health.

Biochemistry Degree at a Glance

Learn this degree from the Department of Chemistry will contribute to your career goals. Then, explore course requirements and see how impactful a Seattle University degree can be.

The Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry degree can lead to rewarding careers in medicine, dentistry, chemistry, biochemistry, environmental chemistry, genetic counseling, bioengineering, chemical life sciences and others. This degree has the option for certification by the American Chemical Society (ACS).

As a biochemistry major, you'll unravel the molecular intricacies of life, studying the chemical processes within living organisms. From DNA to metabolism, your academic journey will delve into the core of biological systems, preparing you for a dynamic exploration of the fundamental building blocks that govern life at the molecular level.

Learning Goals

On successful completion of the biochemistry degree program, you will be able to:

  • Chemistry fundamentals. Master fundamental knowledge and principles from general, organic, inorganic, analytical, physical, and biochemistry.
  • Experimentation. Plan, safely conduct, troubleshoot, and document lab experiments that answer chemical questions.
  • Problem solving. Devise and implement approaches that effectively address complex problems.
  • Critical thinking. Analyze data, results, theories, explanations, and hypotheses by applying chemical knowledge and intuition.
  • Communication. Communicate effectively and persuasively with technical audiences in written and oral forms; develop strategies to understand the technical communications of others.
  • Collaboration. Build on individual strengths to work collectively towards a goal; articulate ideas clearly; play various roles that help the group progress.
  • Professional behavior. Demonstrate timeliness, earnestness, honesty, self-awareness, self-regulation, and ethical responsibility in communications and collaborations.
  • Reflection. Develop the habit of reconsidering ideas or experiences to gain new insights, to discover deeper meaning, or to improve over time.

American Chemical Society Certified

The Chemistry Department offers American Chemical Society (ACS) certified degrees in Chemistry and Biochemistry.


What You’ll Learn

Learn about the classes you’ll take as a student here.

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Top 25% in Science & Engineering

Seattle University ranks #40 in the nation —U.S. News & World Report, 2023


Student-to-Faculty Ratio

Small classes led by talented faculty to foster active learning, an SU hallmark.



Our average of women STEM students nearly doubles the national average of only 23%.

Assistant professor of Chemistry Christopher Whidbey, Ph.D. left, works with students, junior Megan Bigalk of Seattle, center and junior Tusani Nhleko of Pretoria, South Africa, right while they determine the proteins in different gel samples.

Research with Innovative Faculty

Research is woven throughout our curriculum, and students will have research opportunities every year during their academic careers. As a junior and/or senior, every student works one-on-one with a faculty member on publication-quality research using sophisticated instrumentation. This real-world research prepares you for the best jobs in chemistry and biotechnology as well as the top graduate and professional programs at internationally recognized institutions.


A view of a lab with people working at desks.

Inclusive, Global Education

Our Jesuit values mean we see the world through a global, justice-focused lens. Our strong commitment to diversity and small class sizes help create a forward-thinking, close-knit community where everyone can feel at home—and go on to thrive in a global workforce.

Prepared for Top Graduate Programs

If the career you want requires an advanced degree, you can be confident that your Seattle University chemistry degree and research experience will make you super competitive for top graduate programs. You’ll find Seattle University chemistry graduates at:

  • UC Berkeley
  • MIT
  • Harvard
  • Stanford
  • Caltech
  • University of Washington
  • ETH in Zurich, Switzerland

Hear From Our Alumni

Jeannette M. Garcia, PhD, '06

“My undergraduate research at Seattle U gave me the science 'bug.' After working in Dr. Alaimo’s lab and doing real research, I knew that I wanted to continue down that path. My research experience at Seattle U cemented my decision to get my PhD and ultimately to pursue a career in chemistry.”

Research Staff Member, IBM Almaden Research Center

Featured Faculty

Get in Touch

We’re here to help. For information about biochemistry at Seattle University, contact: