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3 years
Bachelor's degree
Scholarships available

Program description


Chemistry is a fundamental and exciting discipline, and one that plays a significant role in many areas of science and in everyday life.

This three-year course aims to give you a flexible and dynamic education in the knowledge and skills needed to advance into a successful chemistry career.

You will study a broad introduction to the main areas of chemistry with the opportunity to specialise in topics that are interesting or important to you through optional modules and a research project. Plus, you will spend many hours in our labs gaining hands-on experience and developing your research, mathematical and computational skills.

Our graduates are employed as chemists working in research, process development and analysis, as well as in broader areas such as teaching, marketing, environmental control, patents and finance.

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Admission requirements

AAB-ABB including Grade B in Chemistry with (where applicable) a pass in the practical element of the A-level. Please note that General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted for entry.

Extended Project Qualification: Applicants with grade A in the EPQ will typically receive an offer one grade lower than the standard A level offer. Please note that any subject specific requirements must still be met.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website.

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Program content

Year one

In year one we aim to stimulate your interest in the subject, whilst giving you a solid knowledge base to build upon in the following years. Our core chemistry modules are based around five principal subject areas: analytical inorganic, organic, physical and solid state chemistry. They include training in key skills for chemists. These core modules are complemented by a range of optional modules, allowing you to exercise choice over your studies and extend your breadth of experience. You may also take optional modules in disciplines such as biological sciences, physics or modern languages.

Students must obtain a year 1 average of at least 55% overall in order to progress into year 2 of the MChem programme. Students who do not achieve a year 1 average of at least 55% will be required to transfer to the BSc programme.

Year two

In year two, core material is rigorously developed across all of the main areas of chemistry through compulsory modules.
You may transfer to the three-year BSc Chemistry course at any point prior to the start of year three. Students must obtain a year 2 average of at least 55% overall in order to progress into year 3 of the MChem programme. Students who do not achieve a year 2 average of at least 55% will be required to transfer to the BSc programme.

If a placement abroad or in industry appeals to you, you will need to register an interest by the start of year two, and transfer to the corresponding MChem course by the start of year three. There are also opportunities for several students to undertake summer research projects in Cardiff, under staff supervision.

Year three

Year three practical work is formed by two separate modules, one in each semester. You will take a compulsory theory module in four branches of the subject: biological, inorganic, organic, physical; and you will select from a range of optional modules.

Year four

 A substantial year-long research project in an area of your choosing gives you the chance to develop and demonstrate new skills through research. There are no compulsory theory modules in year four, which will enable you to select available modules that match your interests.

Scholarships & funding

For more information about scholarships, please visit the university website.

Tuition fees

The full tuition fees for UK and EU Students is £9,000.The tuition fees for Students from outside the EU is £21,950


What skills will I practise and develop?

Knowledge & Understanding:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to demonstrate systematic knowledge and a critical comprehensive understanding of essential facts, concepts, principles and theories relating to the subject area of chemistry. Specifically:

  • Chemical terminology, nomenclature, conventions and units.
  • The structural feature and chemical behaviour of chemical elements and their compounds, including group relationships and trends within the Periodic Table.
  • The principles and procedures used in chemical analysis and the characterisation of chemical compounds, including the application of spectroscopies to the determination of structure and properties of chemical entities.
  • Theories describing structure, bonding, reactivity and chemical change and the relationship between microscopic and bulk properties of matter.
  • The properties and major types of chemical reaction of inorganic, organic, biological, organometallic and coordination compounds.
  • Mathematical knowledge in basic algebra and calculus and numerical manipulation appropriate for the analysis and evaluation of chemical problems.

Intellectual Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to demonstrate:

  • The application of knowledge and understanding of the subject areas identified above to the solution of qualitative and quantitative problems of a familiar and unfamiliar nature.
  • Recognition and analysis of problems and strategies, criticise techniques applicable to their own advanced scholarship, and plan strategies for their solution.

Professional Practical Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to demonstrate the ability to:

  • Plan and safely carry out standard laboratory procedures for preparation, purification, and analysis of a range of substances, and use appropriate instrumental techniques for their study.
  • Monitor chemical and physical properties or changes across a wide range of chemistry, by observation and measurement, and record, in a systematic and reliable fashion, documentation relating to these events in a manner appropriate for a professional chemist working in an academic or industrial situation.
  • Research, review and execute a project, selecting appropriate procedures from literature and knowledge, and proceed from the problem-recognition stage through to the evaluation and critical appraisal of outcomes.
  • Interpret data derived from laboratory observations and measurements in terms of their current significance and the theory underlying them, to assess their significance and place in context.
  • Present scientific material and arguments clearly and correctly, in writing and orally, to a range of audiences including peer-reviewed chemistry journals, seminars and colloquia.
  • Demonstrate computational, data-processing skills and electronic searching skills, relating to chemical information, data and the primary literature.

Transferable/Key Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to demonstrate the ability to:

  • Communicate orally and in writing.
  • Apply information technology such as word processing, spreadsheets, data-logging and storage, web communication and chemical drawing packages.
  • Interact with other people and engage in team-working.
  • Plan and implement projects working towards a goal.
  • Independently identify and undertake study needed for continuing professional development

Career opportunities

Graduate Careers

  • Product Development Chemist
  • Patent Analyst
  • Quality Control Scientist
  • Chemical Engineer
  • Academic Researcher

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About this institute

Cardiff University

Founded in 1883, Cardiff University combines a prestigious heritage with impressive modern facilities, on one of the most beautiful campuses in the UK. As part of the Russell Group, our students benefit from our outstanding research quality and reputation, while...

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Contact info

Cardiff University

CF10 3AT Cardiff

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