Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry


Welcome to the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry

Chemistry studies the elements that comprise all matter. Everything around us - the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, the cars we drive, and even our bodies - are made from these elements.
Biochemistry is the study of all living systems at the molecular level. It looks at the chemical and physical basis of life and how these living systems interact with their environments.


Chemistry is often called the central science as it deals specifically with the 112 elements that comprise all matter. There are five branches of chemistry: analytical chemistry, organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry, physical chemistry and theoretical chemistry. The primary focus of the program is to provide you with extensive theoretical knowledge in all five branches of chemistry while enhancing your technical and practical skills with hands-on experience and research opportunities.

The Departments of Chemistry & Biochemistry and Biological Sciences jointly offer a multi-disciplinary major in biochemistry for the 40-course Bachelor of Science (BSc). You can also select a general major in the sciences and choose biochemistry courses as options. Biochemistry will help you develop a strong background in the basic sciences and extensive laboratory skills. Thereby, it provides background for a diverse range of careers in the life sciences, including professional programs such as medicine and veterinary medicine. 

The Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry is home to many advanced instruments which enable cutting-edge research. These tools include nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), infra-red, Raman, UVvisible, atomic absorption spectrometers, macromolecular x-ray diffractometer, isothermal titration calorimeter, and a surface plasmon resonance spectrometer.

Department Highlights

Celebrating Pride in STEM: ACID:BASE Interviews Prominent Canadian Chemists from the 2SLGBTQIA+ Community

Pride in STEM is an international event that celebrates the achievements and contributions of members from the 2SLGBTQIA+ community across diverse scientific fields. This movement advocates for equality and visibility for professionals and students within the 2SLGBTQIA+ communities in STEM. It encourages the celebration of achievements, contributions, and talents of 2SLGBTQIA+ individuals in STEM, highlighting that diversity strengthens scientific and technological progress by fostering an inclusive environment as well as innovative thinking. In celebration of Pride in STEM this month, ACID:BASE (the Lethbridge chapter of Canadians Working for Inclusivity in the Chemical Sciences, Engineering and Technology Network (CWIC)) conducted interviews with two prominent Canadian chemists from the 2SLGBTQIA+ community. These chemists shared their personal journeys, the barriers they faced as a 2SLGBTQIA+ individual, and their advice for aspiring STEM students from the 2SLGBTQIA+ community, as well as highlighted necessary changes to create a more supportive environment within STEM.

Dr. Trushar Patel elected to the Royal Society of Biology

The new year got off to an auspicious start for Dr. Trushar Patel, University of Lethbridge Canada Research Chair in RNA and Protein Biophysics and associate dean in the Faculty of Arts & Science, when he learned he was named a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology.

“I was positively surprised when I received the email,” says Patel. “That is a nice New Year’s gift and a good beginning to the year.”

Based in the United Kingdom, the Royal Society of Biology was formed in 2009 when the Biosciences Federation and the Institute of Biology merged. The society was granted the Royal title in 2015. Being named a Fellow indicates someone has achieved distinction in biological research, teaching or the application of biology.

Meet Dr. Susan Findlay, Associate Chair of the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, Instructor III

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, Dr. Susan Findlay moved to Canada with her family when she was six years old. A couple of years later, she found her passion in life.

"My first ever job was as a chess tutor when I was eight years old and I've been teaching in some capacity ever since."

Findlay has been teaching chemistry at ULethbridge for almost 20 years. As the Introductory and Organic Chemistry Coordinator, she's the face of chemistry for first- and second-year students. In addition, she creates, manages and provides technical support for online homework in the courses she teaches and hosts her own YouTube channel and a website with chemistry resources.

Shining Student Uvindu Abeysekara: A journey of academic excellence, research, and community engagement at ULethbridge

With unwavering determination, creativity, and an outgoing nature, Uvindu Abeysekara's ULethbridge journey serves as an inspiration, urging us to seize opportunities and push beyond our comfort zones for a transformative university experience.

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From iGEM to innovating antibiotics: Sydnee Calhoun's inspiring journey at ULethbridge

From her early involvement in the iGEM competition to her research in the field of biochemistry, Sydnee Calhoun (MSc '23 (BSc Co-op '19)) has left an indelible mark on the University and …

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Shining Student Ty Dudas

Third-year neuroscience student Ty Dudas embraces ULethbridge’s liberal education philosophy and takes courses outside his major. This discovery led him to organic chemistry and research he hopes will be used to make …

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Career Bridge: Centre for Work-Integrated Learning and Career Development

Career Bridge


Put Your Knowledge to Work 

Whether you’re looking for a more in-depth learning experience by assisting with research projects on campus or by testing your knowledge in a real-life work setting, we can help! The University of Lethbridge is proud to offer you an exceptional opportunity to explore professional development through academic programs and services designed to give you a competitive edge in a fast-changing world.

You have a bright future — experience it via Career Bridge at uLethbridge!

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