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Department of Chemistry, Unit Catalogue 2011/12

CH40166: Preparation for chemistry research

Click here for further information Credits: 18
Click here for further information Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Click here for further information Period: Semester 1
Click here for further information Assessment: CW 20%, DS 50%, OT 30%
Click here for further information Supplementary Assessment: Reassessment not allowed
Click here for further information Requisites: While taking this unit you must take CH40167 and in taking this unit you cannot take CH30050 or take CH30063 or take CH40164 or take CH40165
Click here for further information Description: Aims:
To allow students to develop the skills necessary for preparing a practical research project typical of research in an academic environment. To further develop and reinforce the skills necessary for research work. To develop the students ability to communicate scientific data in both oral and written form. The unit will also provide training in four important techniques - X-ray crystallography, mass spectrometry and NMR spectroscopy and DFT calculations - that are essential to the modern research chemist.

Learning Outcomes:
After studying the Unit, students should be able to:
* Survey current relevant literature using appropriate databases e.g. SciFinder, Web of Knowledge
* Present results in both oral and written formats and place them into context of other researchers' work
* Critically evaluate results, draw appropriate conclusions and identify areas for future research
* have gained a basic understanding of crystallographic detail as reported in primary literature.
* be familiar with CIF and RES file formats.
* be competent with crystallographic display software that enables calculation of derived structural parameters from structural data files.
* be able to generate publication quality molecular and lattice packing plots for crystal structures.
* understand the importance of mass spectrometry as an analytical tool, along with an appreciation of the application areas where it is used.
* be able to explain the basic operation mechanisms of several modern mass spectrometric analysers
* be able to interpret a basic mass spectrum in positive and negative mode, including simple fragmentation patterns.
* understand the principles of how pulsed NMR works, using the vector model.
* understand common problems encountered in the day-to-day acquisition and processing of NMR spectra, how to solve them, and therefore how to achieve more satisfactory results.
* have a knowledge of advanced NMR methods, with a focus on recently developed techniques.
* understand the basis of DFT calculations.
* be able to use the program ORCA to calculate molecular parameters.

Research Methods (T,F,A), Numeracy (F, A), Problem solving (T, F, A), Scientific writing (F, A), Independent working (F).

A research topic will be selected in conjunction with a supervising member of staff and the student will then carry out a literature survey of the relevant background and present a critical written appraisal of it. The student will present a concise summary of the survey in an oral presentation. There will be 12 lectures on the techniques, with 'hands on' training and directed reading.
Click here for further informationProgramme availability:

CH40166 is Compulsory on the following programmes:

Department of Chemistry
  • USCH-AFM02 : MChem (hons) Chemistry (Full-time) - Year 4
  • USCH-AFM05 : MChem (hons) Chemistry for Drug Discovery (Full-time) - Year 4

NB. Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.