Studying Chemistry in Okinawa!CurriculumFaculty

University of the Ryukyus | Curriculum


The objective of the Faculty of Science is to train superior personnel keeping in mind the importance of universal basic science, as well as to promote education focusing on the special characteristics of the subtropical island environment. Taking this perspective, the Chemistry Program seeks to provide training in basic chemistry, including understanding of reactions, structure, and function from the perspective of molecular science. We also implement education covering the creation of new materials, and chemistry training in natural materials and the environment with a focus on the subtropical, island arc, and marine environments. Our goal is to train personnel capable of working in a wide variety of fields drawing on the base of knowledge in chemical elements that they obtain here.

To train personnel who can apply their education in chemistry capable of working in a variety of fields, students mainly study a series of general education courses for their first two years. By studying the liberal arts and language, students get a broad perspective that serves them well in their lives, as well as acquiring a specialization.
During their first year, students must take the Foundations Seminar, where new students tour facilities associated with our university and facilities related to our chemistry program, in order to help them become accustomed to student life. In this seminar students also learn about how broad—and how appealing—the field of chemistry is, and how science contributes to society. At the same time, students take courses on the basics of their specialization in order to help them to better understand their specialization later on.

In their second year, students begin taking specialized courses in the areas forming the basis of chemistry, including physical chemistry, organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, and inorganic chemistry. Specifically, students take the compulsory classes of inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, physical chemistry, and analytical chemistry. From the second semester of their second year through the first semester of their third year, students take chemistry laboratories in the four mandatory fields mentioned above. In these classes and laboratories, students learn about the structure and characteristics as well as the reaction and synthesis of the myriad of substances that exist in the natural world, including inorganic compounds, organic compounds, high-molecular compounds, biological matter, and more. Through this process, students acquire not only a sense of the natural world and the world of science reinforced with knowledge and skill but also the knowledge base they need to address environmental and energy issues with flexibility. Students take general education classes as well as specialized classes through their second year to further enhance their overall education.

From the second semester of their second year, students take a variety of specialized elective classes based on the foundations they have acquired in physical chemistry, organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, and inorganic chemistry. They also take specialized electives on the unique characteristics of the Okinawa environment. Students who have completed all of their compulsory courses, specialized courses, and chemistry laboratories, and the required number of electives, by the end of their third year choose to affiliate with one of our 22 laboratories to conduct their graduation research. The purpose of the graduation research is to acquire specialized knowledge by doing cutting-edge research in their field, to teach students how to properly read and understand research papers, and how to present research findings. Through this process, students acquire the basics of natural science, understanding natural phenomena, observation, how to define issues, and how to solve problems. The Chemistry Program has a wide variety of laboratories, enabling students to get one-to-one training in their field of interest. In their fourth year, in order to further boost their research capabilities, 30% of students move on to graduate school.
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