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This subject will build on the experience gained in second year practical chemistry through the synthesis and characterisation of complex molecules, the acquisition and interpretation of advanced spectroscopic and physical data and the investigation of chemical systems through computational techniques. It consists of a series of laboratory-based experiments aimed at developing skills in the synthesis, safe handling and analysis of chemical substances of a range of different classes of compounds; an understanding of modern characterisation techniques (e.g. chromatography, atomic and molecular spectroscopy); and the operation of instrumentation for the acquisition of kinetic, structural and thermodynamic data.
A component of this subject will also involve the development of skills in independent practical work through the design and implementation of experimental procedures and techniques, and data interpretation. The subject will also provide opportunities for the development of scientific writing and presentation skills, problem solving and small group collaboration, while introducing resources and software commonly used within chemical research fields (i.e. scientific databases, chemical drawing software, molecular modelling & optimisation, etc).
In addition to increased proficiency in standard techniques, this subject provides an introduction into research-based chemistry through integrated and themed experiments. It will provide skill development in a range of techniques utilised in the modern chemistry laboratory.
The subject provides experience across multiple traditional chemical disciplines whilst highlighting the importance of these disciplines in diverse 'real world' applications such as materials science and medicinal chemistry.
Intended learning outcomes
This subject aims to refine students’ experimental skills in the synthesis of complex molecules; the application and interpretation of advanced spectroscopic, computational and physical techniques; and the recording, interpretation and reporting of scientific observations.
Upon completion of this subject, students should have developed the following generic skills:
- the ability to use conceptual models to rationalise observations;
- data recording and interpretation of scientific observations;
- ability to search databases and the scientific literature;
- ability to use advanced computational packages;
- be able to apply procedures for data and error analysis;
- ability to write clear and concise scientific reports;
- an understanding and basic operations of modern techniques;
- an awareness of safe and diligent laboratory practice, including safe chemical and glassware handling, and proper instrument operation.
Last updated: 6 December 2019