Chemical Engineering Major (B.S.)

Chemical Engineering Major (B.S.)
chemical engineering major student working in chemical lab

The Chemical Engineering major at UNH offers an immersive exploration into the transfer and transformation of energy and materials in areas of biotechnology, energy engineering, pharmaceuticals, and more. Here, you’ll work alongside engaged faculty in our state-of-the-art labs, gaining the knowledge and technical skills needed to pursue a myriad of career paths or pursue graduate education. There are many opportunities for research and internships with some of the world’s leading companies in their field. With a focus on sustainable solutions, students are prepared to tackle societal challenges to include environmental protection, energy production, healthcare, manufacturing and more.

What is a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering?

The chemical engineering degree program is tailored to students who want to analyze and design processes related to the transfer and transformation of energy and materials. Graduates from this program apply knowledge of mathematics, science and engineering to identify, formulate and solve chemical engineering problems. They can also design and conduct experiments safely and analyze and interpret data in preparation for graduate studies or professional careers in a variety of fields.

Why study chemical engineering at UNH?

You’ll gain a solid foundation of engineering principles through challenging courses and hands-on learning in our state-of-the-art laboratories alongside award-winning faculty. The considerable number of electives in the curriculum offers flexibility so you can design a program that meets your needs and interests, including those focused in the fields of bioengineering, energy and environmental engineering.

Potential careers

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemical and biomedical engineering
  • Energy engineering
  • Industrial chemicals
  • Petroleum and petrochemicals
  • Pharmaceuticals and medicine
  • Plastics and textiles
  • Pollution abatement

of Chemical Engineering & Bioengineering
Phone: (603) 862-4388
Office: Chemical Engineering, Kingsbury Hall Rm W315, Durham, NH 03824
  • Amelia Burley
    Meet a Wildcat: Chemical Engineering
    Amelia Burley is a senior chemical engineering major here at the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences. Read more to learn about why she loves being a student in her department.
    Learn More
  • Chemical Engineering student Kathryn Carlson
    A Day in the Life of a Chemical Engineering Major
    Kathryn Carlson is a rising senior chemical engineering student here at UNH. Tag along with Kathryn in her day-in-the-life as a Process Validation intern at Lonza in Portsmouth, and learn about the contributions our students are making to the future of pharmaceuticals. 
    Learn More
  • Chemical Engineering major student Sam Mercer
    Meet a Wildcat in Chemical Engineering
    Sam Mercer discuss his favorite things about attending the University of New Hampshire as a chemical engineering major and advice for those considering UNH.
    Learn More

Curriculum & Requirements

Chemical engineering is concerned with the analysis and design of processes that deal with the transfer and transformation of energy and material. The practice of chemical engineering includes the conception, development, design, and application of physicochemical processes and their products; the development, design, construction, operation, control, and management of plants for these processes; and activities relating to public service, education, and research.

The curriculum prepares students for productive careers in industry or government and provides a foundation for graduate studies. The program emphasizes chemical engineering fundamentals while offering opportunities for focused study in bioengineering, energy or environmental engineering.

Traditional employment areas in the chemical process industries include industrial chemicals, petroleum and petrochemicals, plastics, pharmaceuticals, metals, textiles, and food. Chemical engineers also are working in increasing numbers in the areas of energy engineering, pollution abatement, and biochemical and biomedical engineering; in addition, they are employed by many government laboratories and agencies as well as private industries and institutions.

Graduates from the program have the ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering to identify, formulate, and solve chemical engineering problems as well as to design and conduct experiments safely and analyze and interpret data. They are prepared to pursue advanced studies in chemical engineering. Program graduates gain a sense of professional and ethical responsibility with the ability to apply environmental, safety, economic, and ethical criteria in the design of engineering processes. They learn to function as individuals or in a team and gain skills in written and oral communication and effectively use computers for engineering practice, including information search in the library and online. They also understand the need for lifelong learning and the significance of societal and global issues relevant to chemical engineering.

The Chemical Engineering program (B Sci in Chemical Engineering) is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET,, under the General Criteria and the Program Criteria for Chemical, Biochemical, Biomolecular and Similarly Named Engineering Programs.

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
CHBE 400 Chemical and Bioengineering Lectures 1
CHEM 405 Chemical Principles for Engineers 3 4
ENGL 401 First-Year Writing 1 4
MATH 425 Calculus I 2 4
Discovery Program Electives 6 4
MATH 426 Calculus II 4
PHYS 407 General Physics I 3 4
Discovery Program Electives (2) 6 8
Second Year
CHBE 501 Material Balances 3
CHEM 683 Physical Chemistry I 3
CHEM 685 Physical Chemistry Laboratory 2
MATH 527 Differential Equations with Linear Algebra 4
PHYS 408 General Physics II 4
CHBE 502 Energy Balances 4 3
CHEM 684 Physical Chemistry II 3
CHEM 686 Physical Chemistry Laboratory 2
MATH 740
or MATH 644
Design of Experiments I 6
or Statistics for Engineers and Scientists
Discovery Program Elective 6 4
Third Year
CHBE 601 Fluid Mechanics and Unit Operations 3
CHBE 603 Applied Mathematics for Chemical Engineers 4
CHEM 651 Organic Chemistry I 3
CHEM 653 Organic Chemistry Laboratory 2
Chemical Engineering Elective 4
CHBE 602 Heat Transfer and Unit Operations 3
CHBE 604 Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics 3
CHBE 612 Chemical Engineering Laboratory I 3
CHEM 652A Organic Chemistry II 3
Discovery Program Elective 6 4
Fourth Year
CHBE 703 Mass Transfer and Stagewise Operations 3
CHBE 707 Chemical Engineering Kinetics 3
CHBE 713 Chemical Engineering Laboratory II 3
CHBE 752 Process Dynamics and Control 4
Chemical Engineering Elective 4
CHBE 614 Separation Processes 3
CHBE 708 Chemical Engineering Design 5 4
Chemical Engineering Elective 4
Discovery Elective 6 4
 Total Credits129

ENGL 401 First-Year Writing satisfies the Discovery Foundation Writing Skills category.


MATH 425 Calculus I satisifies the Discovery Foundation Quantitative Reasoning category.


PHYS 407 General Physics I or CHEM 405 Chemical Principles for Engineers satisfies the Discovery Physical Science (with lab) category.


CHBE 502 Energy Balances satisfies the Discovery Inquiry requirement.


CHBE 708 Chemical Engineering Design satisfies the Discovery Capstone Experience/Course. 


Chemical Engineering students do not have to take a course in the Discovery ETS category since they satisfy this requirement through a combination of courses in the curriculum. 

Degree Requirements

Minimum Credit Requirement: 129 credits
Minimum Residency Requirement: 32 credits must be taken at UNH
Minimum GPA: 2.0 required for conferral*
Core Curriculum Required: Discovery & Writing Program Requirements
Foreign Language Requirement: No

All Major, Option and Elective Requirements as indicated.
*Major GPA requirements as indicated.

Major Requirements

A minimum of 129 credits is required for graduation with the degree of bachelor of science in chemical engineering. There are nine electives in the chemical engineering curriculum. Six of these are for the Discovery Program requirements. The remaining three electives are chemical engineering electives.

Students are required to obtain a minimum 2.0 grade-point average in CHBE 501 Material Balances and CHBE 502 Energy Balances  and in overall standing at the end of the sophomore year in order to continue in the major. Study abroad (Exchange) chemical engineering students are required to have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better in math, physics, chemistry, and CHBE courses at the end of the semester prior to their exchange semester.

Required Courses
CHBE 400Chemical and Bioengineering Lectures1
CHBE 501Material Balances3
CHBE 502Energy Balances3
CHBE 601Fluid Mechanics and Unit Operations3
CHBE 602Heat Transfer and Unit Operations3
CHBE 603Applied Mathematics for Chemical Engineers4
CHBE 604Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics3
CHBE 612Chemical Engineering Laboratory I3
CHBE 614Separation Processes3
CHBE 703Mass Transfer and Stagewise Operations3
CHBE 707Chemical Engineering Kinetics3
CHBE 708Chemical Engineering Design4
CHBE 713Chemical Engineering Laboratory II3
CHBE 752Process Dynamics and Control4
CHEM 405Chemical Principles for Engineers4
CHEM 651Organic Chemistry I3
CHEM 652AOrganic Chemistry II3
CHEM 653Organic Chemistry Laboratory2
CHEM 683Physical Chemistry I3
CHEM 684Physical Chemistry II3
CHEM 685Physical Chemistry Laboratory2
CHEM 686Physical Chemistry Laboratory2
MATH 425Calculus I4
MATH 426Calculus II4
MATH 527Differential Equations with Linear Algebra4
MATH 644Statistics for Engineers and Scientists4
PHYS 407General Physics I4
PHYS 408General Physics II4
Elective Courses
Select three courses from the following:
CHBE 651Biotech Experience/Biomanufacturing4
CHBE 705Fossil Fuels and Renewable Energy Sources4
CHBE 706Electrochemical Methods: Fundamentals and Applications4
CHBE 709Fundamentals of Air Pollution and Its Control4
CHBE 712Introduction to Nuclear Engineering4
CHBE 722Introduction to Microfluidics4
CHBE 744Corrosion4
CHBE 755Computational Molecular Bioengineering4
CHBE 761Biochemical Engineering4
CHBE 762Biomedical Engineering4
CHBE 766Biomaterials4

By the time of graduation, students will have:

  • an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics. 
  • an ability to apply engineering design to produce solutions that meet specified needs with consideration of public health, safety, and welfare, as well as global, cultural, social, environmental, and economic factors. 
  • an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences. 
  • an ability to recognize ethical and professional responsibilities in engineering situations and make informed judgments, which must consider the impact of engineering solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal contexts. 
  • an ability to function effectively on a team whose members together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, and meet objectives. 
  • an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions. 
  • an ability to acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies.

Explore Program Details

The bioengineering program seeks to provide an environment and opportunities that enable students to pursue their goals in an innovative program with a diversity of offerings that is rigorous and challenging.

Objectives & Outcomes

Those interested in the Chemical Engineering major may also be interested in the following advanced degrees. Students in the program have the opportunity to participate in the UNH accelerated master’s program.

Chemical Engineering M.Eng.

Chemical Engineering M.S.

Chemical Engineering Ph.D.

Take the Next Step

undergraduate student in front of campus building
Students on the lawn at Thompson Hall
student at career event