5 careers for aspiring chemists

23 Nov 2022


Chemistry tutoring at HSC level can be the start of a long and fruitful career.

Go from chemistry tutoring to the perfect career with these 5 careers for aspiring chemists.

Chemistry is a wondrous branch of science. The building blocks of the world around us, students are often rightly fascinated by the power and beauty of chemical elements. It’s easy for passionate STEM students to begin a lifelong love affair with chemistry while in high school and, when this happens, it’s great to consider future careers in chemistry. 

So, what sorts of careers are available for passionate chemistry students? Let’s take a look at 5:

Forensic scientist 

Forensic scientists take a close look at things the rest of us can’t see, using a combination of a critical eye and deep understanding of chemistry to assist with understanding and analysing crime scenes. Evidence analysis, toxicology, drug testing and DNA examination are all just some of the tasks regularly undertaken by forensic scientists. Forensic science is often dramatised in film and TV shows, but it is a genuinely exciting career that combines laboratory science with hands-on field work.


  • Forensic agencies
  • Government agencies
  • Pharmaceutical laboratories
  • Environmental agencies

What to study:

Tutoring services and HSC-level chemistry are the requisite starting points, but at university level students can study specific courses like the Bachelor of Forensic Analytical Science at Flinders University, while many universities will offer majors in Forensic Science and specialist postgraduate study.

Chemical engineer

Chemical engineering encompasses a broad spectrum of roles, but they all share a common goal: using a fundamental understanding of chemistry to improve complex processes. Like other forms of engineering, this can mean working in heavy industries like mining, fuel production and chemical processing. Chemical engineers combine a love for chemistry with a passion for creation, using their skills to build and design better systems and processes within some of the most important industry sectors, as well as leading the way in transitioning to sustainable practices.


  • Fuel production plants
  • Mineral processors
  • Mining
  • Environmental agencies
  • Pharmaceutical research and production

What to study:

Students looking to careers in chemical engineering can study specific courses at undergraduate level, like the Bachelor of Chemical Engineering (Honours) at UNSW as well as postgraduate, as with the Master of Chemical Engineering at the University of Melbourne.

Chemistry is a broad and rewarding career with pathways to suit everyone.”
Nav Phokela


It’s often true that STEM students have a broad range of interests or skills, and toxicology is a path that blends a few. Toxicologists seek to understand the harmful effects of chemicals on humans, animals and the environment, and in doing so it combines an understanding of pure chemistry with biology, medicine and environmental science. Tasks undertaken by toxicologists might include testing products or drugs, blood analysis and studying the effects of particular chemicals on living organisms or the environment.


  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Forensics agencies
  • Government agencies
  • Medical research
  • Environmental agencies
  • Chemical production plants

What to study:

Toxicology can often be studied as a major stream in generalised Bachelor of Science courses, but institutions like Griffith University offer a more specialised Bachelor of Pharmacology and Toxicology.  

Food scientist

Chemistry is a broad and rewarding career with pathways to suit everyone. It might not seem obvious at first, but in our highly industrialised society, food production relies heavily on experts in chemistry. Food scientists can be responsible for the production of food at an agricultural level, but are often employed at a manufacturing level or as analysts for research and development, safety or nutrition. All food is built of chemical components, and all elements of the food production cycle can benefit from chemists to keep consumers safe. 


  • Food manufacturers
  • Clinical researchers (nutrition)
  • Agriculture and primary producers
  • Government agencies
  • Sports science and sporting bodies

What to study:

Studying food science might be specialised at the undergraduate level, as in RMIT’s Bachelor of Food Technology and Nutrition or at postgraduate level like the Master of Food Science and Technology at the University of Queensland.

Chemical research scientist

This career is a little broader than the other options because, really, research science can be applied to a huge variety of sectors. Research scientists tend to spend more time in the lab and less time in the field than the other careers listed here, but for many potential chemists, this is just fine. Chemical research scientists are tasked with creating and analysing controlled experiments in their field. This might be in medical research, food production, industrial chemical production, agriculture and more. The life of the research scientist is well-suited to problem-based thinkers.


  • Medical science
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Food and drink manufacturers
  • Government agencies

What to study:

Future chemical research scientists will find themselves well-placed with a general undergraduate science degree. A solid grounding in the principles of laboratory practice and conducting research experiments is vital, and this can be expanded upon with more tailored postgraduate courses such as the Master of Research (Chemistry) at Curtin University.

Chemistry tutors near me

At Accel iQ, we offer a range of options for chemistry tutoring, both online and in-person. Our one-on-one options are designed by our expert tutors to suit the specific needs of every student, from regular sessions to exam revision and catch up classes.

To find out more about HSC tuition with Accel iQ, please get in touch with our friendly team today.