Our mission is to provide the technical workforce and expertise needed by the chemical and related industries.


Photo of C. Heath Turner

Message from the Department Head

Welcome to the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. I am happy that you have chosen to find out more about our degree programs at The University of Alabama. As you navigate through our various pages, we have tried to summarize the pertinent information you need to help in your decision to possibly attend the Capstone. Should there be any areas that require more detail, please contact me and I will be happy to answer any questions you might have about our department, the College of Engineering or The University of Alabama.

Please understand that this website is designed for a number of important people, like yourself, who often seek very specific information. The sections on our faculty and staff tell you a little about who we are. Other sections describing our curriculum, research, student activities, honors programs, scholarships, careers and alumni are intended to broaden your view of the chemical and biological engineering field. I hope that you will find the information helpful. We always appreciate your input as to how we might make the materials more informative and enlightening. We are pleased that you have taken some time to explore the world of chemical and biological engineering at The University of Alabama.

Dr. C. Heath Turner
Professor and Head

Department Updates

Want to keep in touch? Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn!

Site Updates News Feed

background image

Program Objectives, Student Outcomes and Statistics


Within a few years of graduation, UA chemical engineering graduates will be able to:


  1. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics
  2. an ability to apply engineering design to produce solutions that meet specified needs with consideration of public health, safety, and welfare, as well as global, cultural, social, environmental, economic factors
  3. an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences
  4. an ability to recognize ethical and professional responsibilities in engineering situations and make informed judgements, which must consider the impact of engineering solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal contexts
  5. an ability to function effectively on a team whose members together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, meet objectives
  6. an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions
  7. an ability to acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies


The University of Alabama Office of Institutional Research and Assessment maintains annual enrollment and graduate data for the programs in the College of Engineering. Please visit the OIRA Statistical Profiles website to find statistics for student enrollment, degrees awarded and faculty data.


The chemical and biological engineering program at The University of Alabama derives its educational and scientific purpose from its responsibilities to and relationship with the citizens of Alabama and the international community of chemical engineering professionals. Our mission is to provide the technical workforce and expertise needed by the chemical and related industries.


  • To provide students with a multidisciplinary undergraduate and graduate education of the highest standard of excellence, recognized by both industry and the national academic community, enabling them to perform to their maximum potential in a technologically-based and environmentally-sensitive society.
  • To sustain an international position of leadership in dynamic scientific and technological research that is engaged by students and faculty and that is focused on global issues of significance to the interests of Alabama.
  • To contribute to the economic and technical well-being of the state and nation through innovative educational, professional and informational service.


  • To sustain a nationally-accredited undergraduate program, internationally- recognized research and a graduate program focused on doctoral level achievements.
  • To attain leadership in innovative educational and research areas that recognize the diversity of Alabama’s human and natural resources.
  • To place all graduates in meaningful, challenging and rewarding careers that impact the strength of the technological and industrial base.
  • To provide outreach activities for those within Alabama and the nation who can benefit from the unique educational and professional opportunities offered by our program.
background image

History of the Department

The College of Engineering at the University is one of the five-oldest continuously-operating engineering programs in the country.

Created in 1837, just six years after the formation of the University, the college remains an active and vital part of the University’s higher education mission and solidifies the institution as the Capstone for higher education in the state of Alabama.

The Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering originated out of the need for a degree that emphasized industrial aspects of chemistry. The department was established as the Chemical Engineering Department in 1910, just one year after the inception of the chemical engineering professional society, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. The first UA chemical engineering degree was awarded in 1914. During the early years, a professional degree was available to students in addition to the traditional bachelor’s and masters’s degrees. In the early 1960s, the College of Engineering developed the doctorate programs in response to the arrival of NASA and other research-intensive organizations in northern Alabama. The department awarded the first two doctorate degrees in the College of Engineering in 1964.

Throughout the years, the changing face of the chemical industry has been reflected within UA’s chemical engineering degree program. From highly practical bachelor’s and master’s degree curricula through the 1960s and 1970s, the department evolved to keep pace with changes in industry and make sure that the academic degrees retained relevance as student career choices became more diverse. The mission of the department remains to educate young professionals as translators of fundamental knowledge into viable solutions to problems that are technically, environmentally, sociologically, economically and globally significant.

The department was renamed to include biological engineering in 2004 with a corresponding curriculum change to reflect a growing national trend toward life-science applications for chemical engineering students, toward greater emphasis on small-scale chemical processing within nanotechnology and biotechnology areas, and to provide increased opportunities for students who have an interest in these new professional career options. The degrees awarded under the new curriculum and departmental name remain unchanged, all being in the field of chemical engineering.

-    The University of Alabama     |     The College of Engineering    -

Social Media