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Pharm vs Chem

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I am a psychology and chemistry double major that is about to enter my last year of undergrad. My school is small and not very prestigious, but I have a great gpa (3.94 overall and 3.85 science). I expect to do quite well on the GRE because I'm a good test taker. I've done a bit of undergrad inorganic research at my school (but haven't taken the class). This summer I got into a chemistry REU and I absolutely love the bioanalytical research I'm doing. I want my career to focus on psychological disorders from the chemical/medical perspective and I know I don't want to go into academics.


My question is: chemistry phd, pharmocology phd, or pharmaceutical chemistry phd? 

Also, what tier school should I be aiming for? 

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From your interests, I'd say a chemistry or neuroscience PhD would be up your ally. 


You seem primarily interested in neurochemistry, and if I understand you right both studying the cause & effect as well as developing treatments?


Pharmacology is primarily directed towards studying the mechanism of action of drugs, and pharmaceutical (more typically called medicinal) chemistry is more organic synth/structure activity relations. 


If you want to probe the neurobiological/biochemical processes of diseases and look for routes to treat them, that's more neuroscience/neurochemistry/biochemistry. 


For interdisciplinary areas like yours, I think more traditional programs (and degrees) will suit you better and give you more flexibility down the road. You can likely find people doing research that interests you in Chemical Engineering, Neuroscience, Cell and Molecular Biology, Biomedical Engineering, Biochemistry and Chemistry labs, and you will likely end up with a committee with people from more than one of those disciplines. 

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