Chemistry major: Bachelor of Science

Kapish Gobindlal
Student Profile – Kapish Gobindlal

In his role as an environmental scientist, Kapish Gobindlal uses his chemistry skills every day to assess contaminated soil and groundwater. Read more of Kapish’s story.

Chemistry is a rapidly developing field in New Zealand, with new technologies emerging and being applied to a wide range of industries, stretching from pharmaceutical and minerals to cosmetics and agriculture. With this major, you will gain the skills and knowledge needed by employers.

Inorganic chemistry, synthetic chemistry, physical chemistry, environmental chemistry, biochemistry, food chemistry and analytical techniques are the main emphasis of chemistry at AUT. We research the application of chemistry to benefit society and the natural environment. You will acquire an understanding of the research and industry related fields involving chemistry in New Zealand and globally. In addition, you develop the essential practical laboratory skills needed to be successful in scientific employment.

Chemistry at AUT and your lecturers

Bachelor of Science: degree outline

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Below is a summary only. For a comprehensive overview of this qualification, please refer to the academic calendar.

Year 1

You will study the following compulsory papers.

Core papers
CHEM501 Principles of Chemistry
HEAL506 Knowledge, Enquiry and Communication
HEAL507 Health and Environment
CHEM502 Biological Chemistry
SCIE503 Biophysics

Plus three level 5 electives.

Year 2 and 3

Level 6

Four of:
CHEM601 Inorganic Chemistry
CHEM602 Biochemistry
CHEM603 Organic Chemistry
CHEM604 Analytical Chemistry
CHEM605 Physical Chemistry   

Plus four electives.

Level 7

Three of:
CHEM702 Instrumental Analytical Chemistry
CHEM704 Organic Synthesis and Molecular Design
CHEM705 Surfaces, Colloids and Nanotechnology
CHEM706 Advanced Inorganic Chemistry
CHEM707 Protein and Metabolic Biochemistry

Plus 5 electives OR 3 electives and SCIE701 Research Project.

There is the opportunity to complete other majors including Food Science and Microbiology alongside Chemistry within 3 years without doing more than the standard eight papers (120 points) per year.

AUT offers the paper CHEM401 Foundation Chemistry which is highly recommended for students who have not studied chemistry to NCEA Level 3 (or equivalent).  


The School of Applied Sciences offers competitive fee-only scholarships for the first year of the Bachelor of Science (one for every major). Some of these scholarships are for the full 3 years and are co-funded by external institutions, such as the Department of Conservation. For more information visit the scholarships website.

Career opportunities

  • Research and development scientist
  • Applied research and product development
  • Quality assurance/quality control
  • Process chemist
  • Regulatory affairs
  • Science policy
  • Patent attorney (requires further training in patent law)
  • Environmental protection
  • Scientific consulting
  • Government research and monitoring
  • Laboratory analysis and management
  • Local councils: environmental, public health, and waste management and monitoring services
  • Formulation chemist
  • Secondary school teacher*
  • Technical manager
  • Technical sales
* Upon completion of the Graduate Diploma in Secondary Teaching (1 additional year of full time study and training in how to teach, subject to meeting entry and selection criteria).
Graduates and students of science

Other majors and pathways in the Bachelor of Science

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Last updated: 11-Jan-2018 2.26pm

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.