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Unit information: Introductory Practical Chemistry in 2019/20

Please note: Due to alternative arrangements for teaching and assessment in place from 18 March 2020 to mitigate against the restrictions in place due to COVID-19, information shown for 2019/20 may not always be accurate.

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Introductory Practical Chemistry
Unit code CHEM10004
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Chris Adams
Open unit status Not open

A-Level Chemistry or its equivalent; A-Level Mathematics or its equivalent



School/department School of Chemistry
Faculty Faculty of Science


This unit introduces safe and organised working practices within a laboratory environment and also some basic laboratory techniques.

Units aims:

To develop in students the first fundamental practical skills.

Intended learning outcomes

At the end of this course, students should be able to:

1. Identify procedural and chemical hazards and operate effectively, safely and efficiently to carry out an experiment within the allotted time.

2. Know when and how to:

o Maintain an up-to-date lab book with accurate calculations and experimental observations

o Interpret and follow experimental instructions

o Correctly weigh out chemicals

o Prepare solutions of accurately known concentration

o Assemble and correctly use simple laboratory apparatus

o Reflux solutions

o Separate liquids and extract suspensions

o Recrystallise impure solids

o Filter solids using gravity or vacuum (Hirsch and BĪ‹chner) methods

o Evaporate liquids

o Titrate solutions

o Select appropriate glassware for use

3. Interpret and manipulate data sets using Excel and present results using Word

4. Analyse and interpret results and spectra from a range of analytical techniques including NMR, IR, UV-Vis, Melting point and TLC.

Teaching details

Laboratory sessions and independent study. The Dynamic Laboratory Manual provides important e-learning resource in advance of (and during) the laboratory sessions.

Assessment Details

Students will be continuously assessed in laboratory work (summative and formative - 100%)

Continuous assessment of the laboratory skills detailed in the Intended Learning Outcomes (summative and formative - 100%).

Practicals in the first 18 weeks will be formatively assessed, giving the students the chance to learn and practice the skills, which will then be summatively assessed in week 19-24. Students will be allowed to discard the marks from two of the assessments, leading to the unit mark being composed of the best 4 of their 6 marks.

Supplementary or resit assessment of this unit is only possible through engagement in the following academic year.

Reading and References