Biochemistry Major

College of Arts and Sciences

Degree BA or BS, Biochemistry

Department Chair Anna Fedor, PhD


Nicola Y. Edwards, Assistant Professor of Chemistry/Biochemistry, BA Rice University; PhD University of California, Los Angeles

Anna Fedor, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, BS Pennsylvania State University; PhD Syracuse University

Beth Leverett Haas, Assistant Professor of Chemistry/Biochemistry, BS Indiana University of Pennsylvania; MS, PhD University of Michigan

Charles Saladino, Jr., Professor of Chemistry, BA, MA Hofstra University; PhD Iowa State University

Frank Yepez Castillo, Assistant Professor of Chemistry/Biochemistry, BS Universidad Simón Bolívar; PhD The University of Oklahoma

Biochemistry is an exciting and challenging field of study that combines the worlds of chemistry and biology into a science that explores the chemistry of biomolecules and those biological processes that support a living system. Today's biochemistry operates in the world of life on earth described by biology and probes the complexities of this world on the molecular scale using the concepts and analysis techniques derived from the field of chemistry.

The biochemistry major reflects the fusion of the biological and chemical fields as a hybrid of both departments’ curricula, combining the essential areas of chemistry knowledge of biology at the molecular level. We believe that students must first be good chemists before they can be good biochemists. Thus, the program is designed to be highly interdisciplinary. The biochemistry program at Misericordia University prepares students for graduate studies in chemistry and biochemistry, as well as the pharmaceutical, biomedical, and bio-technology industries.

At the end of their sophomore year and thereafter, biochemistry majors must have and maintain a GPA of 2.5 in courses required for the major in order to remain in good standing in the program, and a GPA of 3.0 to be recommended for graduate or professional schools. Students must earn a minimum of three (3) credits of research (CHM 460) before, or during, the first semester of their senior year. Research can be replaced with a summer internship (CHM 490, up to 3 credits) before, or during, their junior year.

Program Goals and Outcomes

The following are program goals for the Biochemistry major:

  1. To prepare students in the area of biochemistry for careers in industry or for study in graduate or professional programs.
  2. To teach students to solve problems, to think critically, and to interpret and report data with the use of technology
  3. To familiarize students with chemical literature in multiple formats, including print and electronic references and chemical databases
  4. To help students develop skills for independent and collaborative laboratory practices, including lab safety, analytical instrumentation, chemical synthesis, and quantitative analysis
  5. To promote students’ understanding of professional, ethical, and social responsibilities in the practice of chemistry and biochemistry
  6. To prepare students to communicate effectively through written reports and oral presentations, including preparation of professional quality visual aids

The Biochemistry major program goals are realized in the following student learning outcomes:

  1. Demonstrate proficiency in laboratory techniques in lower-level courses and proficiency in reporting advanced research in upper-level courses
  2. Demonstrate proficiency in researching, completing, and reporting advanced disciplinary research
  3. Demonstrate proficiency in laboratory techniques and in preparing formal laboratory reports
  4. Illustrate professional, ethical, and social responsibilities in the practice of chemistry and biochemistry in advanced disciplinary research
  5. Present advanced disciplinary research in paper, poster, and oral presentation to the university’s consortium group