Polymer Science Minor

Simply stated, polymer science is the science of long chain molecules.  By virtue of their size alone, macromolecules have certain unique chemical and physical properties.  The science is characterized by extraordinary breadth.  It involves aspects of organic chemistry, physical chemistry, analytical chemistry, contemporary physics (particularly theories of the solid state and solution), chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, and electrical engineering.  Moreover, there is a growing demand for what can be called engineering technologists, those skilled in the art of designing processes for producing specific products.
The goal of the polymer science minor is to produce graduates who have a first-hand knowledge of the relationships between the synthesis, structure, properties and processing of polymer materials.  Students are required to take MATSE 202 OR MATSE 443 (3 credits each), which provide a broad overview of the subject.  Other courses are chosen from a suite of courses that deal with polymer synthesis, microstructure and morphology, properties, and processing.
Any questions on the minor should be addressed to Cindy Lake in 225 Steidle Building (cll12@psu.edu or 814 -865-5766).

Course Requirements:

A total of 23-25 credits with a grade of C or better are required for the minor.

Required INTRODUCTORY Courses (8-10 credits)

  • CHEM 202:    Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry I (3) OR
  • CHEM 210:    Organic Chemistry I (3)
  • MATH 230:    Calculus & Vector Analysis (4) OR
  • MATH 231:    Calculus of Several Variables (2)
  • MATSE 202:   Introduction to Polymer Materials (3) OR
  • MATSE 443:   Introduction to the Materials Science of Polymers (3)


  • MATSE 441:   Polymeric Materials I (3)
  • MATSE 445:   Thermodynamics, Microstructure, & Characterization of Polymers (3)
  • MATSE 446:   Mechanical & Electrical Properties of Polymers & Composites (3)
  • MATSE 447:   Rheology and Processing of Polymers (3)


  • B M B 474:       Analytical Biochemistry (3)
  • BME 446:         Polymers in Biomedical Engineering (3)
  • MATSE 403:     Biomedical Materials (3)  OR
  • BME 443:         Biomedical Materials (3)
  • MATSE 474:     Polymeric Materials Laboratory (1)
  • MATSE 494W: Research and Design Senior Project (Thesis required) (1-3)
  • MATSE 496:     Independent Studies (1-3)
  • M E 403:           Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell Engines (3)
  • Any other related course in consultation with an advisor