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Chemical Research MSc

The principal component of this degree is an intensive novel research project providing 'hands-on' training in methods and techniques at the cutting edge of scientific research. The programme is particularly suitable for those wishing to embark on a research career. This programme is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Covid-19 programme updates

Due to COVID-19, there may have been updates to this programme for the 2020 academic year. Where there has been an update, these are indicated with a red alert and a link which will provide further information.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2020

Modes and duration

Full time: 1 year

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 1 November 2019
Close: 11 August 2020
Notification
Due to the large number of applications received, this programme is no longer accepting applications for 2020/21 entry. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. Applications for 2021/22 entry will open later in the year.

Tuition fees (2020/21)

UK/EU:
£11,470 (FT)
Overseas:
£30,100 (FT)


Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website.

Accreditation:

This programme is accredited by the RSC and successful completion will count towards eligibility for Chartered Chemist status for students with an appropriate Bachelor level qualification in Chemistry

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Standard

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

About this degree

Students develop a systematic approach to devising experiments and/or computations and gain familiarity with a broad range of synthetic, analytical and spectroscopic techniques, acquiring skills for the critical analysis of their experimental and computational observations. They also broaden their knowledge of chemistry through a selection of taught courses and are able to tailor the programme to meet their personal interests.

You will undertake Chemistry modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of core literature (30 credits) and research projects (90 credits), and a transferable skills for scientists module (15 credits) and a flexible Topics in Modern Chemistry module (45 credits). In this flexible module, students choose to study several topics from a broad range of chemistry topics; this is done in consultation with your research advisor.

Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Chemical Research.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory modules

All students undertake a literature project (30 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits), which are linked. In addition students take a module (15 credits) to develop their research and professional skills. A further module called Topics in Modern Chemistry (45 credits) is populated by options topics covering many areas of chemistry.

  • Masters Literature Project
  • Research Project
  • Transferable Skills for Scientists
  • Topics in Modern Chemistry

Optional modules

The module "Topics of Modern Chemistry” (45 credits) is a flexible module where students can select to study up to nine topics from a list of options topics covering various areas of chemistry. Students will therefore be able to create a bespoke module tailored uniquely to their own interests and chosen research area. Examples of subject areas for the topics are listed below, please be aware that these may be subject to change.

  • Advanced Topics in Energy and Environmental Science
  • Advanced Topics in Physical Chemistry
  • Biological Chemistry
  • Concepts in Computational Chemistry
  • Frontiers in Experimental Physical Chemistry
  • Inorganic Rings, Chains and Clusters
  • Intense Radiation Sources in Modern Chemistry
  • Topics in Quantum Mechanics
  • Numerical Methods in Chemistry
  • Pathways, Intermediates and Function in Organic Chemistry
  • Principles of Drug Design
  • Principles and Methods of Organic Synthesis
  • Simulation Methods in Materials Chemistry
  • Stereochemical Control in Asymmetric Total Synthesis
  • Structural Methods in Modern Chemistry
  • Synthesis and Biosynthesis of Natural Products
  • New Directions in Materials Chemistry
Covid-19 module updates
Due to COVID-19, there may be updates to the modules for your chosen programme of study this year. Some modules may not be available or may need to be moved to a later term or year of study.  We have included these updates below:   New compulsory core module ‘Topics in Modern Chemistry’ FHEQ Level 7 for Terms 1 and 2. Core module Chemical Research Literature Review (CHEM0066) has been replaced with core module ‘Masters Literature Project (CHEM0040) for Terms 1 and 2. All optional modules are currently suspended. These updates are relevant for 2020-21 academic year only.  The full list of modules will be available in the module catalogue from late August.  From the first week of September, you will be invited to complete module selection from Portico, our student record system. There may need to be additional updates or changes to modules during the academic year to allow for new guidance from the UK Government and Public Health England. Your department shall keep you updated of these changes as they become available.  

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project which features a viva and culminates in submission of an extended dissertation (90 credits).

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, laboratory classes and research supervision. Assessment is through the dissertation, coursework, in class tests, research papers and a written literature survey. All students will be expected to attend research seminars relevant to their broad research interest.

Covid-19 contact hours on campus
In Term One, while campus will be open, all the learning activity for the core content of your modules will take place online – including lectures, tutorials, seminars and assessments. By “core content” we mean everything you need to learn to complete the module successfully. In addition to these online contact hours, we will be offering some face-to-face educational activities for students on campus, and we will provide alternative online activities for those students unable to join us on campus. These activities, which will include contact with academic staff, will be relevant to your programme of study may include seminars, academic and employability skills workshops, small-group or individual tutorials, lab and practice-based teaching. UK Government safety guidelines will limit the amount of ‘in person’ activity we can offer and while it will vary from programme to programme, is likely to be no more than 1-2 hours per week. This will vary across departments, particularly if your programme includes laboratory/practical/studio/workshop sessions. You will be updated with more specific details as they are available and your timetable will indicate which sessions will be on campus and which will be available online.
Covid-19 practical component updates
Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to the availability of the practical components for your chosen programme. Any updates relate only to the 20/21 academic year and may not apply to all students across the programme depending on your year of study.  Your department will keep you updated if the practical component of your programme is able to occur and/or any alternative options available.   There may need to be additional updates or changes to the practical component during the academic year to allow for new guidance from the UK Government and/or Public Health England. Your department shall keep you updated of these changes as they become available. 
Covid-19 assessment updates
There may be changes to the format of assessments for modules in this programme due to COVID-19. These will be summarised for each module on the module catalogue from 17 August 2020.   If any changes to assessments need to be made during the academic year due to updates in government guidance, these will be communicated to you as soon as possible from your department.    
Communicating further Covid-19 mitigation plans
We are continuing to follow UK Government guidance, as well as the expertise of our researchers, including specialists in health, education, human behaviour and infection prevention, to make sure UCL is as safe as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic. If it becomes necessary to make further changes to your programme as a result of new guidance/regulations, UCL and your department will communicate these as soon as this becomes clear. We will keep you up-to-date with our plans throughout term one, so you have the information you need to be able to take decisions that are right for your circumstances. Please ensure that you keep in touch with your department by regularly checking your UCL emails, Moodle courses, the Coronavirus FAQs for Students page and any UCL online groups or social media you follow.

Additional costs

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.

Funding

Students can be self-funded or find sponsorship from funding agencies such as research councils, the UCL scholarships and funding pages, the European Union, industry or charities.

There are a number of Graduate School Scholarships available.

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.

Brown Family Bursary

Note:
This scheme is now closed for 2020/21
Value:
£15,000 (1 year)
Eligibility:
UK
Criteria:
Based on both academic merit and financial need

Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme (CSSS)

Note:
Applications for this scholarship are now closed for 2020/21
Value:
Full fees, flights, stipend, and other allowances (1 year)
Eligibility:
Overseas
Criteria:
Based on both academic merit and financial need

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

This MSc is designed to provide first-hand experience of research at the cutting-edge of chemistry and is particularly suitable for those wishing to embark on an academic career (i.e. doctoral research) in this area, although the research and critical thinking skills developed will be equally valuable in a commercial environment.

Employability

The MSc will equip students with an in depth knowledge of cutting edge chemistry as part of their research.  This will help develop skills of analytical thinking, problem solving, data analysis and communication all of which are valuable to prospective employers.

Why study this degree at UCL?

With departmental research interests and activities spanning the whole spectrum of chemistry, including development of new organic molecules, fundamental theoretical investigations and prediction and synthesis of new materials, students are able to undertake a project that aligns with their existing interests.

Students develop crucial first-hand experience in scientific methods, techniques for reporting science and using leading-edge research tools, as well as further essential skills for a research career.

Accreditation:

This programme is accredited by the RSC and successful completion will count towards eligibility for Chartered Chemist status for students with an appropriate Bachelor level qualification in Chemistry

Department: Chemistry

Application and next steps

Applications

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £80 for online applications and £105 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

The programme is suitable for students wishing to progress to a research degree in chemistry or those seeking to acquire research skills which are valued in a commercial environment.

Application deadlines

All applicants
11 August 2020

Applicants can select the research projects in Computational, Inorganic, Organic or Physical Chemistry. In the application cover letter students are asked to indicate which area(s) of chemistry they are interested in studying, clearly indicating why they chose this particular area, and indicating (at least) three academic members of staff they are interested in working with.

NOTE: for applicants holding a UCL Chemistry Batchelors’ degree, the choice of a Master’s programme must not include one which requires modules previously studied at UCL - contact the Programme Director before applying.


For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Chemical Research at graduate level. Please tell us what has led you to research. What were the enjoyable or difficult aspects of your undergraduate projects? Do you have much experience in laboratory work or computing? What are the skills you most need to acquire?
  • why you want to study an MSc in Chemical Research at UCL. UCL's Chemical Research degree is heavily research oriented (50% in terms of credits). Tell us how you will make the most of this opportunity?
  • how your academic background meets the demands of a challenging programme: Most applicants for this programme have a first degree in Chemistry. How well did it prepare you for research? What skills do you want to acquire that will help you in a research career?
  • how you anticipate that your future career might proceed.

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

Page last modified on 13 August 2020