Chemistry Professor

Teach university students about chemistry.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$41,000 – $134,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Chemistry Professors do?

Chemistry is a specialized branch of physical science that deals with matter and the way it changes during chemical reactions. Or in more basic terms, it’s the science class where students get to make things bubble and blow. Chemistry Professors teach students about the basics of chemicals (things like atoms and molecules), and the way chemical reactions happen.

There are a few different ways to be a Chemistry Professor. You can be a Professor at a high school, though the term “Professor” usually refers to Teachers at the community college or university level. You can teach chemistry basics, or specialize in something like inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, or biochemistry. Each of these subjects deals with chemistry as it relates to different types of matter or organisms.

For each class, you begin with the basics and slowly move on to the more complex areas. So you might start the school year by introducing the periodic table, and end it by having your students do complex chemical reactions.

As a Chemistry Professor, you’re just like any other Professor in terms of your general tasks. You prepare and give lectures, assign homework, give tests, and grade papers. You might teach only a few classes a week, but you spend the rest of your time in meetings with students, preparing lectures, collaborating with other Chemistry Teachers in your school, and grading papers.

If you work at a university, you’re also expected to spend some of your time outside of class doing your own research. You write papers, present information at conferences, and might even write books, either on your own or in collaboration with others.


Should I be a Chemistry Professor?

You should have a doctoral degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.

  • Also known as: Assistant Professor of Biochemistry, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Associate Professor of Chemistry See More

    How to become a Chemistry Professor

    Most Chemistry Professors have a Doctorate. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaaar9&chl=||||master%27s+%2822%25%29|doctorate+%2878%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,78
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