This is the ideal degree programme if you want a complete education in chemistry and would like to see how your interests develop before specializing. The programme covers all important areas of chemistry and allows you to develop interests in other subjects.
In the first year, the course entitled 'Introduction to Chemical Principles' consolidates A-level chemistry and generates an awareness of modern chemistry as an integrated whole. The fundamentals of the three main branches - organic, inorganic and physical chemistry - are introduced subsequently. Different courses in mathematics are offered depending upon whether you have studied it at A-level or not. You can then choose one or two elective courses from a wide range, including astronomy, biology, computing, languages, management, physics, psychology, geology, statistics etc.
The core second-year courses continue to develop the main themes of chemistry, leaving two half-units of elective courses which include chemical and non-chemical options.
Extensive laboratory courses are included in each of the core units in the first two years to give you a firm grounding in practical skills as well as developing transferable skills.
In the third year, both degrees include considerable scope for developing your own interests through options, and up to one unit of experimental work is included. For MSci students, this unit, An Introduction to Research Methods , is a sound preparation for extended personal research projects in the fourth year. BSc students take a similar experimental half-unit course. Elective chemistry courses include Pathways, Intermediates and Function in Organic Chemistry, Principles of Drug Design, Numerical Methods in Chemistry, New Directions in Materials Chemistry and various others. Courses in the third year, and the fourth year of the MSci degree, reflect the many research interests of the staff and are at the forefront of current chemical developments. Options in other subjects can also be taken.
The MSci degree culminates in the fourth year in a two-unit advanced research project in which all of the many research facilities of the department become available. The project will be undertaken over two whole teaching terms for an average of 4 hours of every day. The aim of the project is to develop your skills further not only in performing advanced experimentation but also to devise and plan your own work. Many such projects lead to published work in internationally renowned journals.
As well as studies in science, BSc and MSci students will gain experience in the skills required in any modern profession: computer skills, the ability to express ideas orally and through written reports, skills in retrieval and analysis of material from the literature, and the ability to formulate and refine their own ideas.