Bachelor of Science (Chemistry)

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Gain a sought-after qualification

A chemistry degree offers excellent marketability now and well into the future.

Find out more about the Bachelor of Science parent structure

What is it like?

One of the exciting things about chemistry is that you begin to understand the world we live in, what everything is made of and how their properties can be changed. This could help you get involved in huge scientific breakthroughs and contribute to public debates on issues of global importance.

For example Teflon, a plastic, can be used to line a frying pan while plastic food wrap, will melt if you so much as put it near heat. How are the two plastics composed to allow them to have quite different properties and uses?

Massey University BSc (Chemistry) major provides a full foundation in all aspects of chemistry. In addition to the fundamentals there is sufficient flexibility that you can add in additional ‘flavours’ such as chemical biology, chemical synthesis and materials/nanoscience at Manawatu or computational, environmental and biological chemistry at Auckland.

Combine with other sought-after subjects

Match your degree with a second major or minor (e.g. in mathematics, nutrition or genetics) to develop a unique blend of skills that will set you apart from the rest.

Real-world problem solving

You’ll carry out analytical projects applying broad-based chemistry knowledge to solve real-world problems.

For example, one of our students tracked nutrients from a farm’s centralised nutrient drip to find out it they were getting to the trough they were being pumped to. Another tested the caffeine levels in sport drinks.

You’ll have the opportunity to work alongside some of our world-recognised researchers on issues of international significance.

Get connected

You’ll be well placed to gain connections and experience within industry while studying. Opportunities include summer internships with Crown Research Institutes monthly functions with New Zealand Institute of Chemistry members and employment opportunities with our chemistry department.

Up close and personal with equipment

You’ll interact frequently with a range of instruments and learn techniques for molecular analysis, X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance, spectroscopy, ultra high performance liquid chromatography and more.

Upon graduating from Massey’s chemistry programme you will have a much greater understanding of environmental issues such as climate change. You will be able to contribute intelligently to public debates on controversies such as chemicals in the environment.

Your degree will give you an excellent marketability in all industries and businesses that rely on chemistry in many different ways.

Internationally recognised

Massey University’s programme is ranked in the top 500 university chemistry programmes in the world by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) rankings.

Earn more

A Ministry of Education report, undertaken over nine years, showed that those who complete a qualification in a science, technology, engineering or mathematics field of study have high relative earnings after they complete their study. Earnings can be substantially more than other graduates.


New Zealand’s science institutions want employees who know their industry and therefore invest in the future workforce by providing scholarships to students. Why not have a crack at helping fund your study with a share of hundreds of thousands of dollars on offer every year? For more information visit:

A good fit if you:

  • Enjoy the study of sciences, especially chemistry
  • Are curious about the properties of different substances and how we can improve them
Anushree Sen Gupta
BSc (Chemistry)
Graduated in 2011

“A degree in chemistry from Massey University is held in high esteem internationally…”

In 2013 I graduated with an MSc in Forensic Science at King’s College London. Concurrently I interned at Cellmark Forensic Services, UK’s leading pro­vider of forensic science ser­vices.

A degree in chemistry from Massey University is held in high esteem internationally and it ensured that I was a competitive applicant for this exclusive and prestig­ious course at King’s College.

During my time studying chemistry at Massey I enjoyed the broad range of topics and the emphasis on real world ap­plications. The rigorous practi­cal classes fed my passion for chemistry and turned me into a real hands-on scientist.

The teaching and laboratory facilities at Massey are top class and that makes the learning even more enjoyable.

I also gained a wealth of knowledge beyond the classroom from my lectur­ers who were always approachable and willing to help. My degree opened up a myriad of opportunities for me including summer research projects at Massey which resulted in the publication of my first scientific paper. The BSc in Chemistry has given me a solid footing in academia and the scientific industry.

I moved back to New Zealand in 2014 and today I am in a senior technical position at AsureQuality in Wellington.


As a chemistry graduate from Massey you will be in demand - both in New Zealand and overseas. Your knowledge can be applied to an amazingly wide range of settings including industry, business, research institutes, universities, polytechnics, and schools.

There is a growing role for chemical scientists as we confront major challenges. Chemical scientists, using the principles of green chemistry, will be required to help protect the environment, improve health, provide new energy sources, design new processes, and assist in food production.

Over 200 companies in New Zealand employ chemical scientists in product development, quality assurance, marketing, sales, and administration. If you would like to have a career in industry you should consider combining management or occupational health and safety courses with your chemistry major.

You could be employed in the:

  • Food industry (dairy, meat, canning)
  • Forest products (pulp and paper)
  • Chemical processing of wool, textiles, and plastics
  • Production of agricultural and horticultural chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

Chemical scientists are increasingly employed in areas concerned with the environment; those looking for such a career should include the environmental science package in their programme or consider the Bachelor of Business Studies/Bachelor of Science conjoint programme.

Scientific research is also an important field that you could join. Chemical scientists carry out research in industry, specialist research institutes such as the Fonterra Research Centre and the Forest Research Institute, and at universities.

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