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Master's Degree Programme

About the programme
Language: English  (See language requirements)  | Place of study: Aarhus  |  Commencement: August / September and January / February (only applicants with a Danish Bachelor's degree)


The Department of Chemistry offers a two-year MSc in Chemistry. The degree programme is open to students with a Bachelor’s degree in chemistry from universities and teaching institutions in Denmark and abroad. The programme is research-oriented and reflects the interests of the business community, research institutions and the public sector. It is flexible, and can be tailored to match the academic interests of the individual student.

As a student on the programme you get to specialise in a particular subject area, while at the same time acquiring general competencies in chemistry. Teaching at the university is greatly influenced by the research conducted here, as the lecturers are active researchers. All classes on the MSc programme are taught in English. As an MSc student, you have excellent opportunities for working with researchers in the laboratory, and you can also complete a project in collaboration with a private company or a public institution. 

Students as researchers

The MSc thesis, completed during the final year of the programme, carries considerable weight, and in this context students benefit from the informal atmosphere between staff and students. When you work on your MSc thesis, you will be connected with a group of researchers of your choice. In this way, you have the opportunity to participate in the group’s research projects, academic discussions and articles.

You also have the option of specialising in a subject within a broad area, including one of the areas of chemistry in which Aarhus University is particularly strong:

  • synthesis and analysis of new organic substances, e.g. for pharmaceuticals
  • structural studies: nuclear magnetic resonance, X-ray and laser spectroscopy
  • computer simulations for investigations and calculations of molecular properties and reaction mechanisms
  • materials chemistry – synthesis, structure, properties and new materials

Career profile

Graduates from the Department of Chemistry find work in a wide range of fields and institutions. Most jobs are within research, development, teaching, communication or consultancy in the public or private sectors, particularly in chemical and pharmaceutical companies. Chemists employed in the chemical industry typically perform a wide range of functions: for example developing new products, analysing chemical reactions in order to improve them, or with responsibility for supervising production to prevent the occurrence of errors. If your wish is to be a communicator, you can choose to teach at Danish upper secondary schools or at laboratory-technician or teacher-training colleges, or in adult education or other advanced education programmes. In most of these schools, the teaching language is Danish.

It is also possible to enter the PhD programme at Aarhus University during or after MSc studies. To be enrolled on the PhD programme, students must apply to the Graduate School of Science and Technology (GSST) at Aarhus University. The combined MSc and PhD programme lasts five years.

Read, print and be inspired

Download and print a short presentation of the MA programme in Chemistry.

Admission requirements

The following Bachelor’s degrees qualify students for admission to the Master’s degree programme in Chemistry:

  • A Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Aarhus University, University of Southern
  • Denmark or University of Copenhagen.
  • A Bachelor of Science degree in Medical Chemistry from Aarhus University.
  • A Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Aarhus University
  • A Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry and Technology from Technical University of Denmark.    
  • A Bachelor of Science degree in Nanoscience from Aarhus University.
  • The following other degrees can provide admission to the Master’s degree programme in Chemistry:
    • A Bachelor’s degree amounting to at least 60 ECTS credits in Chemistry as well as basic courses in Mathematics, physics and statistics can qualify the student for admission.

Other qualifications can provide admission to the Master’s degree programme, provided the university assesses that their level, extent and content correspond to the degrees mentioned above.

Upon admission further requirements regarding composition of the degree programme may be stipulated.

Language Requirements

Since English is the language of instruction in all subjects, all applicants are required to provide evidence of their English language proficiency. 

Read how to document your language qualifications

Please see the general admission requirements.

Legal right of admission
Students with a Bachelor's degree programme in Chemistry at Aarhus University have the right to be admitted to the Master's degree programme in Chemistry on the condition that application is made for admission to the Master’s degree programme no later than three years after completion of the Bachelor’s degree programme. The legal right of admission requires receipt of the application by Aarhus University within the appropriate period of time.

Selection criteria

As the Master’s programme only admits a limited number of students each year, meeting the admission requirements does not in itself guarantee admission to the programme. Allocation of student places is based on an overall assessment. In evaluating qualified applicants, the admissions committee assess applicants on the basis of the following criteria:

Academic background

  • Overall grade level – Bachelor’s degree
  • Grades achieved on relevant courses*
  • Relevant courses* (measured in credit units) included in your Bachelor’s degree

* Relevant courses include core courses within the subject areas of Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics and Statistics.

Please note that grades obtained after the time of application cannot be included in the assessment of grade level.

The admissions committee assess each applicant on the basis of the information provided in diplomas, transcripts, and course descriptions.

Programme structure

The Master’s degree in chemistry counts as 120 ECTS credits and mainly consists of subjects within the chemistry field of study. You specialise by participating in course activities and projects and by writing a thesis. During your very first week, you structure your own individual study programme with the help of a teacher from the Department of Chemistry by choosing courses from the course catalogue. Your programme is based on your academic qualifications and interests and the subjects you studied for your Bachelor’s degree. The plan must be approved by the Board of Studies before you can enrol for examinations.

For more information about the individual courses, click here.

If you would like information about options regarding a Master’s thesis in
chemistry working with research groups at the Department of Chemistry, visit their web site.

Academic Regulations

Forms of teaching

At the University of Aarhus, you are in close contact with researchers in a way that you rarely experience at other universities. The door to the professor’s office is always open if you need clarification of the study material, and you are encouraged to ask questions at lectures and during exercises. We make heavy demands on your academic skills and independence. In return, you gain considerable benefits in the form of academic challenges and scientific knowledge, in addition to broad competences.

The teaching at the university focuses on independence, critical thinking and collaboration. Part of the teaching is in the form of lectures that introduce new angles to the material compared with the textbooks. The theoretical and practical exercises take place in smaller groups where you study relevant issues in depth. Depending on your choice of specialisation, your main forms of study and work involve laboratory work and the use of advanced experimental equipment such as laser, NMR and X-ray methodologies, as well as computer modelling. The varied forms of teaching, collaboration in groups and the opportunity for close scientific dialogue with the researchers provide you with general competences that are in great demand in the global job market. These competences include abstract, critical and independent thinking, analytical skills and strategic planning. You can use these skills in many contexts – even in jobs you didn’t know you were qualified for.

The teaching is divided into two semesters per year. For an example of a course calendar, go to: http://studerende.au.dk/en/

PhD programme

If you have the necessary skills and interest, you have the option of applying
for admission to the PhD programme. You can apply when you have completed your
Bachelor’s degree and one year of your Master’s degree or when you have completed your Master’s degree. In the PhD programme, you start working on a research project and are gradually trained through courses and personal guidance to become a researcher. For more information, click here or read examples of current research projects at the Department of Chemistry.

Student life

There is more to life as a chemistry student at the University of Aarhus than subjects and lessons. The versatile and inspiring student life at the Department of Chemistry is centred around Alkymia, the department’s student association. Alkymia organises celebrations and a Friday bar, and the Chemistry Student Council also arranges a number of academic events. The different student associations at the university hold meetings regarding study-related issues. These organisations influence the academic content of the degree programmes, from department and centre level to the top management levels at the university.

Campus – a unique place

The University of Aarhus is unique, especially because the buildings are grouped in one campus area close to the Aarhus city centre. The campus has many green areas and a beautiful park surrounding a small lake. Here you also find student accommodation and an underground system of corridors, which means that you don’t have to get your feet wet going from the canteen to your study area. There are also lecture theatres and a host of activities ranging from sports days to the regatta on the lake, interesting lectures, a film club, libraries and university celebrations. The campus ensures that you have easy access to the canteen, student counsellors, teachers, the bookshop, the State and University Library and the Friday bar.

Aarhus as a study centre

The university is not all Aarhus has to offer. As the second-largest city in Denmark, Aarhus has numerous different cultural activities. The well-known Aarhus Festival is celebrated for a week at the beginning of September every year and the streets really come to life. During the rest of the year, you can visit different music venues and concert halls in the city or find entertainment at one of the many theatres in Aarhus. The city’s many museums include ARoS – the major international art museum, which is a spectacular place for visual experiences. If you have had enough of cultural activities, you can ride your bike to the beach in no time or go for walks in the Risskov woods or in the beautiful woods around Marselisborg. The forty thousand young students in Aarhus make up 17.5% of the population, which leaves its mark on city life. Aarhus is a young, dynamic city with plenty of opportunities.

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Job functions for grads

This data is derived from AU's 2016 employment survey. This data should not be considered a completely accurate representation of the labour market and job functions for all graduates of the individual degree programmes. It exclusively represent the responses submitted to the survey in the years in question.