CH4PR-MChem Chemistry Project

Module Provider: Chemistry
Number of credits: 60 [30 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring / Summer module
Non-modular pre-requisites: For Part 4 Chemistry only
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Ricardo Grau-Crespo


Type of module:

Summary module description:
To give students the experience of working as part of a research group on an extended, open-ended research problem.

To give students the experience of working as part of a research group on an extended, open-ended research problem.

Assessable learning outcomes:
Students should appreciate how to tackle a problem where the answer is not known. They should know how to search the literature for previous relevant work. They should know how to plan and implement necessary experiments to solve the problem they are tackling. They should be able to present their results in a logical and legible form in their written report, to give an oral presentation of their work, be capable of discussing their project report in a viva and able to respond to questions on their presentation. Students should be able to search the chemical literature and write a review on a specific topic.

Additional outcomes:
Students will further develop their numeracy, IT and communication skills. Students will develop techniques for independent learning, become familiar with the chemical literature and the methods used in research. Students will recognise the importance of time management in the planning of the project and preparation of the report and presentation.

Outline content:

The Project Handbook outlines in full complete details for delivery and assessment of the research project and the details in the handbook should be referred to. Students are assigned to work with a member of academic staff within one of the research teams or project groups, wherever possible taking into account the students preference. The research teams are: "Chemistry for Life and the Environment", "Materials Chemistry", and  "Molecular Chemistry" Lectures on "Presentation and report writing" (1 hour lecture, Spring term), "Project planning" (1 hour lecture, Summer term previous year), "Health and Safety" (1 hour lecture, Autumn term).

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
14 hours practical work per week (practical includes computational and theory).

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 1 1 1
Practicals classes and workshops 140 100
Guided independent study 119 119 119
Total hours by term 260.00 220.00 120.00
Total hours for module 600.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Dissertation 40
Project output other than dissertation 30
Oral assessment and presentation 30

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Practical work will be assessed both through work in the laboratory and laboratory notebooks and records including electronic media. A four page (approx) project plan document will be compiled over the summer vacation prior to commencing the project. A four page (approx) interim report must be submitted in the first week of the spring term. The final project report must be submitted by the named date at the start of the summer term. The project report, the project plan document and the laboratory notebook will be assessed by two members of staff who will also hold a viva with the student. Students should be aware that the project report will be subject to a check for plagiarism. Instructions for submitting the report will be given at the end of the Spring term. A 20 minute talk on the project, with up to a further 10 minutes available for questions and discussion, will be given at the end of the spring term.

Guidance on good practice on avoiding plagiarism can be found in the Handbook. Full details of projects available in project handbook and on relevant Blackboard site.

Relative percentage of coursework breakdown:

Project plan document (Supervisor’s mark) 10%

Performance during the project and laboratory records 

(to include COSHH assessments, log book signed by supervisor) 

(Supervisor’s mark) 20%

Final project report (First and second assessors’ agreed mark) 40%

Viva examination (Supervisor’s and Assessor’s agreed mark) 15%

Assessment of final oral presentation 15%


Formative assessment methods:
An interim report is required at the start of the Spring term. Supervisors will give feedback on this report.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Assessment requirements for a pass:
    An overall mark of 50%.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    It is not possible to retake this module in the same format. If a student fails the programme overall, reassessment will be by re-submission of the project report and an oral examination in August.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding: Students should be expected to pay approx. £20.00 for 2 bound copies on a 70 page double sided document.
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 20 April 2018


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