Module code: CHE2031

Module Overview

The module covers aspects of inorganic chemistry including bonding, structure and reactivity of a range of p- and d- block elements, including relevant associated practical work.

Module provider


Module Leader

AMODIO Christopher (Chemistry)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

JACs code: F120

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

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content



Molecular compounds formed by and/or between p-block elements. Boranes (introduce Wade’s rules), silanes, mononuclear molecular fluorides, interhalogens and related ions. The “inert pair effect” and B metals (contrasted to transition metals).


Molecular shape. Symmetry in inorganic chemistry. Symmetry elements. Molecular point groups and their assignment. Symmetry labels as applied to orbitals within molecules and in coordination compounds.


Further transition metal chemistry. The spectrochemical and nephelauexetic series. Crystal field and molecular orbital approaches. The description of local aspects of synergic bonding of pi-acid ligands. Stability constants. Reaction mechanisms for ligand substitution and electron transfer in transition metal coordination chemistry. Magnetochemistry of transition metal coordination compounds.


Bonding models. Central atom orbitals and ligand group orbitals in transition metal chemistry. “Electron deficient” bonding in main group chemistry, possibly illustrated using diborane and sulfur hexafluoride (is d-orbital participation necessary and are there 6 bonds?). Metal-metal bonding (single bonds, delocalised bonding, multiple bonds) in transition metal chemistry.


Survey of roles and functions of d-block metals in biological systems.

38 hours

Practical work on range of syntheses, spectroscopic, quantitative and qualitative analyses, on topics in s and p block, transition complexes and solid state. analysis



Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Laboratory Work and Portfolio 30
Examination EXAM - 1.5 HOURS 70

Alternative Assessment

No alternative to examination. Failure of practical unit of assessment will be required to attend during the Late Summer Assessment period and complete a defined practical course.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate successful achievement of the learning outcomes.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • 1.5 hour examination 70% (addresses LOs 1-4)

  • Selected practical reports, clearly indicated at beginning of practical course 30% addresses LOs 1,2,4,5)


Formative assessment

Commentary and feedback on tutorial work and on selected practical reports.



Verbal feedback during tutorials, enhanced by subsequent written feedback; verbal and written feedback of lab reports.

Module aims

  • To show how fundamental principles of structure, bonding, kinetics and spectroscopy may be applied to explain the chemistry and properties of selected p- and d-block elements.
  • To use these fundamental concepts to explain selected aspects of chemistry, including structure and bonding, substitution and redox reactions and biological roles.
  • To provide a sound basic knowledge of the properties, nature and reactivity of the transition metals and their complexes, related to principles of electron configuration, bonding, role and structure.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Explain crystal field theory and use it to interpret properties of transition metal complexes KC
2 Appreciate an understanding of the importance of thermodynamic and kinetic controls on the nature and reactivity of complexes in solution, and be able to interpret the values and significance of stability and rate constants; KC
3 Use molecular orbital theory (LCAO) and other bonding models to explain the structure, bonding and reactivity of simple molecules, identify symmetry operations and symmetry elements, and deduce point groups for simple molecular species; KC
4 Apply knowledge of basic chemistry of selected elements or groups to rationalise their reactivity, including biological functions where appropriate; KC
5 Demonstrate appropriate analytical and cognitive skills in solving problems, and practical skills in carrying out more advanced experimental work. CPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 85

Lecture Hours: 32

Tutorial Hours: 4

Laboratory Hours: 42

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:


  • Encourage students to understand and further investigate key aspects of inorganic chemistry in terms of nature, structure, bonding, reactivity of selected p-block and d-block elements and compounds, and to develop the practical skills necessary to investigate and monitor their reactions.


The learning and teaching methods include:


  • 27 hours of lectures, 2 hours of small group tutorials and 42 hours of practical work.


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


Programmes this module appears in

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

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.