• What is Chemistry Used For? Introduction to Studying Chemistry

Many people don't understand what chemistry is for nor do they see it as having real usefulness in everyday life, even though it's present in everything around us. Since ancient times, chemical processes have evolved alongside human beings, and understanding this subject is key to moving forward towards the future.


There are multiple options for delving into a world as incredible as chemistry, such as studying the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry at IQS. For now, and to address any doubts you may have if you're thinking about studying this degree, we're going to answer some questions that will help you make the best decision for your future.

What does chemistry do and what is it for?

Chemistry is the science that studies substances and their interactions, in which changes occur both in matter and energy. Through research that has been carried out, we have been able to understand (and create) increasingly complex molecules and materials.

Chemistry plays a fundamental role in today's society, both within the disciplines of the natural sciences and because of its importance in the economic sphere. Some sectors such as food, energy, pharmaceuticals, and transportation could not have developed without the study of chemical interactions.

What is chemistry used for?

The chemical industry deals with obtaining different raw materials and processing them through chemical methods to transform them into products of all kinds. These processes can be basic or primary (metallurgy, petrochemicals, etc.), transformational or secondary (glass, plastic, dyes, etc.), and fine or tertiary (biotechnology, agrochemicals, etc.).

What's is chemical thinking used for?

Chemical thinking takes the knowledge of this discipline to take on and tackle various challenges. Through the development and application of knowledge and these practices, it is possible to analyse, synthesize, and transform materials with the idea of giving them practical utility.

What do you have to study to become a chemist?

If you liked doing experiments when you were young and you'd like to work in a laboratory, the career of a professional chemist could be in your future. Through different educational options, you'll gain the necessary knowledge to work both for research centres and in companies where these positions exist.

At the Instituto Químico de Sarrià we offer two bachelor's degrees that open up a wide range of possibilities: the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry and the Undergraduate Programme in Chemical Engineering. In addition, you can also take advantage of Dual Undergraduate Programmes to get a more detailed education or gain specialization through different master's and postgraduate degrees.

If you're wondering about the differences between chemistry or chemical engineering, or what analytical chemistry entails, you can find all the information you need in the Student Support section.

What does the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry entail?

With our strong hands-on teaching method, the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry at IQS in Barcelona will enable you to acquire a wide range of skills. Our facilities, faculty, and learning and work methods make the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry at IQS one of the most qualified bachelor's degrees both in Spain and internationally.

Throughout your chemistry studies, you'll be able to understand and apply knowledge on chemistry, life sciences, and engineering in the practice of chemical sciences. In addition, you'll also do experiments during your laboratory work to meet established requirements and evaluate the risks of working with chemical and biological substances, among many other skills.

Some of the subjects you will study here include:

  • Fundamentals of Chemical and Biological Laboratory
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Materials Science
  • Organic Chemistry and Materials Laboratory
  • Instrumental Analysis
  • Quality, Safety, and Environmental Management
  • Experimental Techniques in Biosciences

Is studying chemistry difficult?

It's true, the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry is not an "easy" degree. It requires dedication and consistent work, along with a lot of laboratory work. In addition to an interest in science, high school electives such as Chemistry, Physics, and Mathematics will help future students prepare for the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry. With the European credit system, you'll have the opportunity to participate in tutoring sessions and take tests regularly that will help you constantly evaluate your progress and make things a bit easier on you.


In any case, we can't forget that these studies also include theoretical-practical subjects (with problem solving and exercises) and hands-on subjects which are conducted in the IQS laboratories and involve working with specific materials and substances that feature various degrees of danger. This makes the education very diverse and, while it takes great effort, there is a wealth of different knowledge, problems, and practices that students have to work through during the learning process.

Study the Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry at IQS

We hope this information clarifies what chemistry is for and how our curriculum can help you. At IQS, you’ll have many options both to continue your education and to form part of a professional team to help your career progress over the years. Does this sound right for you?

Undergraduate Programme in Chemistry