Is Chemistry the right Subject for me?


Chemistry in the present day

The natural science of chemistry has always been the science of the structure, properties and transformation of substances. The advances of several hundred years of research and development have yielded profound insights into processes and phenomena in nature and have shaped the world we live in today. Today, chemistry forms the scientific basis for all material supply and value chains: from petrochemicals and agrochemicals to high-tech materials, from pharmaceuticals to energy sources.

Chemistry can therefore be found in all areas of our daily lives - starting in the morning when brushing our teeth with an electric toothbrush and ending when we switch off the light in the evening, because: Toothbrush handle and battery, cleaning body and ingredients of toothpaste, light switch, filament and protective atmosphere in the bulb all have to fulfil very specific properties.
Life itself is based on chemical processes about which we are gaining more and more knowledge and which we can influence to cure diseases through tailor-made drugs and active substances.

The research of new technologies and the development of new substances and applications is decisively driven by chemists, because chemistry will continue to play an important role in our society in the future. A major challenge, for example, is the sustainable securing of energy needs on the basis of renewable raw materials. This problem is addressed, among other things, by the interdisciplinary excellence cluster of the RWTH "The Fuel Science Center", in which six professors of the Chemistry Department are involved. Another challenge is the development of improved accumulators to store electrical energy with high density and low weight and thus promote electromobility.

Through its many subfields, chemistry continues to be a very versatile and exciting frontier science that shares many areas with other disciplines such as physics, biology, medicine, materials science and engineering.


Studying Chemistry at RWTH

In the Bachelor's programme, students gain an intensive insight into the basic subjects and technically oriented core subjects, and the Master's programme and the doctorate enable specialisation in the various fields of specialisation.

From the first semester onwards, practical and experimental training is of great importance. The correlations and laws learned in theory are brought to life and confirmed through exciting, insightful experiments. The prerequisite for becoming enthusiastic is curiosity and a keen interest in the natural sciences.

But how should one imagine studying chemistry? What is the concrete procedure when I decide to study chemistry? To get an idea of the conception, forms of lectures and learning content, you can find more information under the heading Bachelor of Science Chemistry.


Perspectives after graduation

Due to the many overlaps with other disciplines, the fields of application for trained chemists are also very versatile and graduates have good prospects on the labour market. In addition to the classic career fields in research and development, there are also numerous perspectives in other fields of work:

  •  Business administration (management, marketing, procurement, sales)
  • Media (publishing, magazines, newspapers, corporate communications, public relations)
  • Public authorities (environmental authorities)
  • Law (patent law, chemical law, etc.)
  • Didactics of chemistry (grammar schools, vocational schools etc.)
  • Toxicology (hazardous substance testing, risk assessment)
  • Forensic medicine
  • Waste management
  • Politics (boards, committees)
  • Documentation (organisation, administration)
  • Freelance work (consulting, expertise)