Module code: CHE1043

Module Overview

This module gives an introduction to fundamental laws that govern the behaviour of matter through an understanding of the properties of matter at molecular, atomic and subatomic level.

Module provider


Module Leader

RIDGE K Dr (Chemistry)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 4

JACs code: F110

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:
• Development of theories of atomic structure. Rutherford model of the atom. Black body radiation. Planck’s equation. Quantisation, quantum numbers and energy levels. Bohr Theory of the atom; atomic spectrum of hydrogen. Problems with classical theory of light; power of light sources, nature of the photon and the photoelectric effect. Electrons as waves; De Broglie hypothesis and wave-particle duality; Heisenberg Uncertainty principle. Wave theory approach to atomic structure: 1-D Schrodinger equation; particle in box; Brief introduction to solutions of Schrodinger equation for rigid rotor, harmonic oscillator and hydrogen atom Wave functions, probability density, Born interpretation. Introduction to quantisation of rotation and vibration; Morse curves Colour of conjugated molecules Atomic orbitals. Radial wave functions. Radial distribution functions.
• Nature of kinetics. Reaction rates and rate constants, orders, molecularity and mechanisms. Rate laws. Differential rate equations. Integrated rate equations and half-life equations for 0, 1st and 2nd order reactions. Arrhenius and the effect of temperature on reaction rates. Experimental techniques for measurement of rate, rate constant and activation energy.
• Equations of state. Ideal gas. Gas laws. Dalton’s Law of Partial Pressures. Avogadro’s constant. Kinetic model of gases. Maxwell Distribution of Speeds. RMS velocity. Molecular Collisions.
• Thermodynamic variables: Laws of thermodynamics. Calorimetry. Le Chatelier’s principle. Van’t Hoff equation. Adiabatic processes. Hess’ law. Kirchoff law. Chemical equilibria.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Examination Examination (1.5 h) 70
Coursework Coursework Laboratory portfolio 30

Alternative Assessment

Failure in the laboratory may require re-assessment through a defined practical examination

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate that they have successfully met the learning outcomes of the module (see above).

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of
• Coursework (30 % of the module): Assessment of practical (experimental) skills and the ability to write scientific reports (LO2, LO3)
• Examination (70 % of the module): Assessing LO1 and LO2

Formative assessment
Formative assessment is provided for all types of summative assessment mentioned above. Thus a portion of the experimental sessions and the laboratory reports related to them are formatively assessed.
Formative assessment is also provided in tutorials where seen and unseen questions are discussed in preparation for the final examination.
Formative assessment also takes place in lectures where opportunities for problem solving allow group work and discussion.

Feedback is provided orally throughout the duration of the module in every opportunity (lecture, tutorial, practical session) including one-to-one meetings arranged on student request.

Feedback is provided in writing
• After completion of each of formative laboratory reports
• After completion of tutorials

Module aims

  • provide an understanding of the principles underlying elementary quantum theory and their experimental foundation;
  • introduce basic principles of current atomic structure;
  • develop further understanding of how and why reactions occur.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 understand and apply the underlying concepts and principles of • quantisation •chemical thermodynamics • the Kinetic Theory of Gases • reaction kinetics. CKT
002 Interpret and present simple data for a range of processes and appreciate different approaches to solving practical and theoretical problems. CT
003 Successfully and accurately carry out a range of appropriate experiments, interpret the results and draw conclusions, communicating the outcomes in written form with a structured and coherent scientific argument. CPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 63

Lecture Hours: 41

Tutorial Hours: 4

Laboratory Hours: 42

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

• present the theory and foster enquiry and consolidation through discussion,
• enhance problem solving skills,
• enhance practical (laboratory) skills including the ability to write scientific reports
• give a comprehensive understanding of the standards required for successful completion of the module

The learning and teaching methods include:

• Lectures (30 hours): Powerpoint presentations and discussion (including some problem solving)
• As appropriate. pre-lecture learning (1 h for each of 11 lectures, 11 h in total) Part of the course is delivered through ‘flipped learning’ where the students are required to work for 1 h before each lecture to view a screencast and to interact via the ‘discussion’ option offered by the Panopto software.
• Tutorials (4 h total): discussion of pre-set and of unknown questions
• Practical (laboratory) sessions (6 x 6 h and 6 x 1 h of pre-lab lectures): Experimental work on topics including spectrometric analysis, determination of thermodynamic parameters and investigation of reaction kinetics.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list


Other information


Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Chemistry with Forensic Investigation BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Chemistry BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Medicinal Chemistry BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Chemistry MChem 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Chemistry with Forensic Investigation MChem 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Medicinal Chemistry MChem 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2018/9 academic year.