Our Teaching

We have a modern approach to teaching chemistry which we believe will better prepare you for when you enter the field.

Most institutions still teach Chemistry as the segregated subjects of Inorganic, Organic and Physical chemistry (IOP), whereas we teach the categories of Synthesis, Measurement and Analysis. This does not mean that you will learn less about these subjects than a student taught along these more traditional lines. We believe we provide a more accurate view of the subject as a whole. Your first year will cover a broad understanding of the central concepts of the course. Years 2-3 will give you the opportunity to specialise in the area of your choice.

  • Synthesis covers the preparation of not only organic compounds but inorganic, organometallic and biological molecules.
  • Measurement encompasses the study of rates of reactions, thermodynamic feasibility and electrochemical properties along with quantitative and qualitative measurements.
  • Analysis incorporates a wide range of spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques, plus recent developments in microscale analysis using nanostructures and microfluidics.

An example of research that spans all three traditional areas is transition metal complexes. Researchers would synthesise ‘organic’ ligands, react them with metals, characterise them with spectroscopic techniques, and examine their photochemical behaviour.

Our ethos

Although we are a young department we have employed some of the best academics who are experienced in both research and teaching. We are committed to small group teaching, which we believe is the cornerstone of excellence in undergraduate education. Our staff to student ratio is one of the best in the country. We also provide final year research projects where you will work alongside postgraduate students and postdoctoral staff. These interactions will ensure that you are a valued part of the department and are made to feel as such!

Practical work is an integral part of our courses; in order to receive RSC accreditation, roughly 100 hours of practical work per year are required. Therefore the courses involve a significant proportion of lab-based practicals as well as lectures, seminars and computer-based lab sessions. These sessions will give you the skills that you need to advance in your studies of chemistry, and the transferable skills that will make you attractive to employers. Our modules tend to run between 5-10 weeks, with continual assessment of coursework, worksheets, mini reports, and writing up lab sessions.

Flexible degree schemes

The flexibility of the course means it is possible to transfer between three and four-year options and to sample overseas exchange opportunities.

We offer you the opportunity to study single-honours Chemistry or add in elements from across the Faculty of Science and Technology including:

  • Biology
  • Environmental Science
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Engineering

As a result, many doors are open to chemistry graduates, and career opportunities are very diverse.

Example Timetable

 MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday
9am

         
10am

Skills for Chemists Skills for Chemists     Organic Structure
10am

       
11am

       
12pm

Organic Structure   Spectroscopy and Analytical Chemistry Organic Structure Organic Structure
1pm

  Spectroscopy and Analytical Chemistry      
2pm

Organic Structure     Spectroscopy and Analytical Chemistry  
3pm

     
4pm

     
5pm

     

Please note that this timetable is for demonstration purposes only, and your final timetable will differ.