Polymers and polymer composites are increasingly important in our everyday life and can be found everywhere around us.
At the same time, more and more high-performance speciality polymers and polymer nanocomposites have been developed for advanced engineering, plastic electronics and biomedical applications.
Bringing together expertise from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Department of Chemistry, and further supported by the Polymer Centre, the UK’s largest single-university academic network in the field of polymers, this course will provide you with a thorough understanding of advanced topics on polymer and composite science and engineering.
A friendly, forward-thinking community, our students and staff are on hand to welcome you to the department and ensure you settle into student life.
Your project supervisor will support you throughout your course. Plus you’ll have access to our extensive network of alumni, offering industry insight and valuable career advice to support your own career pathway.
Prospective employers recognise the value of our courses, and know that our students can apply their knowledge to industry. Our graduates work for organisations including Airbus, Rolls-Royce, the National Nuclear Laboratory and Saint-Gobain. Roles include materials development engineer, reactor engineer and research manager. They also work in academia in the UK and abroad.
90 per cent of our graduates are employed or in further study 6 months after graduating, with an average starting salary of £27,000, the highest being £50,000.
We have invested in extensive, world-class equipment and facilities to provide a stimulating learning environment. Our laboratories are equipped to a high standard, with specialist facilities for each area of research.
Tools and production facilities for materials processing, fabrication and testing, including wet chemical processing for ceramics and polymers, rapid solidification and water atomisation for nanoscale metallic materials, and extensive facilities for deposition of functional and structural coatings.
Our £3million advanced nuclear materials research facility provides a high-quality environment for research on radioactive waste and disposal. Our unique thermomechanical compression and arbitrary strain path equipment is used for simulation of hot deformation.
You’ll have access to newly refurbished array of microscopy and analysis equipment, x-ray facilities, and surface analysis techniques covering state-of-the-art XPS and SIMS. There are also laboratories for cell and tissue culture, and facilities for measuring electrical, magnetic and mechanical properties.
The Kroto Research Institute and the Nanoscience and Technology Centre enhance our capabilities in materials fabrication and characterisation, and we have a computer cluster for modelling from the atomistic through nano and mesoscopic to the macroscopic.
An interdisciplinary research-led department; our network of world leading academics at the cutting edge of their research inform our courses providing a stimulating, dynamic environment in which to study.
Working alongside students and staff from across the globe, you’ll tackle real-world projects, and attend lectures, seminars and laboratory classes delivered by academic and industry experts.
You’ll be assessed by formal examinations, coursework assignments and a dissertation.
There may be some changes to these modules before you start your course. For the very latest module information, check with the department.
The overall aim of the Master of Chemistry programme is to train students to conduct research in an academic or industrial setting.
Students apply the knowledge and skills they have acquired by identifying a research question, situating it in its proper chemical and social context and designing a study that addresses this research question.
This is an initial Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.
The full programme comprises 120 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System), including 18 ECTS for compulsory courses and 54 ECTS for electives. In addition, students develop advanced practical skills in an internship at KU Leuven to the value of 18 ECTS, while the remaining 30 ECTS are allocated to the Master’s thesis.
There are five majors to choose from:
The Department of Chemistry consists of five divisions, all of which conduct high quality research embedded in well-established collaborations with other universities, research institutes and companies around the world. Its academic staff is committed to excellence in teaching and research. Although the department's primary goal is to obtain insight into the composition, structure and properties of chemical compounds and the design, synthesis and development of new (bio)molecular materials, this knowledge often leads to applications with important economic or societal benefits.
The department aims to develop and maintain leading, internationally renowned research programmes dedicated to solving fundamental and applied problems in the fields of:
Knowledge and understanding
Acquire, use and form an opinion about information
Communication and social skills
Motivation and attitudes
The Master of Science in Chemistry offers a wide range of specialisations and, as such, many career options are available to our graduates. More than half of our alumni work in industry, while others work in academia or other research institutes.
Within industry, graduates can opt for a technical, a commercial, or research-oriented career. Since the chemical industry is also a major industrial sector throughout Europe and the rest of the world, employment opportunities are enhanced by obtaining a PhD. A few examples of professional domains where chemists are needed include industry (chemistry, petrochemistry, medical sector, pharmaceutical industry, agrochemistry, food industry etc.), government or public administration, and research institutes.
This twelve month chemistry MSc is designed primarily for international students, either to act as a preparation for PhD studies or for students wishing to broaden their research experience and knowledge of chemistry within the context of the English language.
The programme consists of taught modules, worth a total of 90 credits, delivered in the first six months of the course followed by a substantial research project, also worth 90 credits.
The modules will include both analytical and synthetic topics and a research project from a wide range of areas may be selected.
To provide students with essential skills in the characterisation of materials by spectroscopic, structural and analytical techniques. This will be achieved with reference to organic, organometallic and polymeric materials.
To give students an in-depth experience of chemical research through individual, extended Masters research projects.
To develop confidence in the use of English oral and written skills within a chemical context
The taught modules cover a wide range of modern advanced chemistry and include aspects of:
The taught modules will be delivered as lectures with extensive support from workshops and practical classes. The project and Research skills module will address issues of scientific report writing, presentation skills and database searching as a preparation for the research project.
Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: [email protected]
With an increase in the number of undergraduate degrees offering the MChem qualification, our Chemistry MRes allows BSc graduates to become equally competitive by studying for an enhanced qualification that will set them apart throughout their career.
Our MRes qualification is also a convenient entry point into the UK academic system for overseas students, and many of our MRes graduates go on to successfully complete a PhD.
Our academics are at the forefront of their field, having recently discovered a method for the rapid detection of drugs from a fingerprint; and a naturally sourced, environmentally safe chemical for the treatment of an important agricultural pathogen.
This programme is studied full-time over one academic year. It consists of three taught modules and a research project, which contributes 75 per cent of the final credits to the degree and includes the laboratory based research, library work, COSHH, record keeping and writing the dissertation.
We would normally expect the laboratory based part of the project to be, on average, two to three full days per week during the teaching semesters and five days per week during non-teaching times (for example, over the Christmas, Easter and summer breaks).
Example module listing
The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.
The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:
Knowledge and understanding
Intellectual / cognitive skills
Professional practical skills
Key / transferable skills
The Chemistry programme is run within the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences and the cross-faculty Surrey Materials Institute (SMI). Staff in the Department of Chemistry have expertise which includes all aspects of chemistry:
You will receive a thorough education in advanced aspects of chemistry, but also undertake independent research via a project, guided by a dedicated and experienced supervisor.
Projects are available across a range of topics in chemistry, and may extend into areas of biology, forensics or materials science. Past MRes students have continued to further (PhD) education and to posts in research in industry.
We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.
In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.
Pursuing a research degree at the School of Chemistry could be one of the best experiences of your life.
In addition to gaining research skills, making friends, meeting eminent researchers and being part of the research community, a research degree will help you to develop invaluable transferable skills which you can apply to academic life or a variety of professions outside of academia.
The Chemistry/Biology Interface
This is a broad area, with particular strengths in the areas of protein structure and function, mechanistic enzymology, proteomics, peptide and protein synthesis, protein folding, recombinant and synthetic DNA methodology, biologically targeted synthesis and the application of high throughput and combinatorial approaches. We also focus on biophysical chemistry, the development and application of physicochemical techniques to biological systems. This includes mass spectrometry, advanced spectroscopy and microscopy, as applied to proteins, enzymes, DNA, membranes and biosensors.
Experimental & Theoretical Chemical Physics
This is the fundamental study of molecular properties and processes. Areas of expertise include probing molecular structure in the gas phase, clusters and nanoparticles, the development and application of physicochemical techniques such as mass spectoscropy to molecular systems and the EaStCHEM surface science group, who study complex molecules on surfaces, probing the structure property-relationships employed in heterogeneous catalysis. A major feature is in Silico Scotland, a world-class research computing facility.
This research area encompasses the synthesis and characterisation of organic and inorganic compounds, including those with application in homogeneous catalysis, nanotechnology, coordination chemistry, ligand design and supramolecular chemistry, asymmetric catalysis, heterocyclic chemistry and the development of synthetic methods and strategies leading to the synthesis of biologically important molecules (including drug discovery). The development of innovative synthetic and characterisation methodologies (particularly in structural chemistry) is a key feature, and we specialise in structural chemistry at extremely high pressures.
The EaStCHEM Materials group is one of the largest in the UK. Areas of strength include the design, synthesis and characterisation of functional (for example magnetic, superconducting and electronic) materials; strongly correlated electronic materials, battery and fuel cell materials and devices, porous solids, fundamental and applied electrochemistry polymer microarray technologies and technique development for materials and nanomaterials analysis.
Students attend regular research talks, visiting speaker symposia, an annual residential meeting in the Scottish Highlands, and lecture courses on specialised techniques and safety. Students are encouraged to participate in transferable skills and computing courses, public awareness of science activities, undergraduate teaching and to represent the School at national and international conferences.
Our facilities are among the best in the world, offering an outstanding range of capabilities. You’ll be working in recently refurbished laboratories that meet the highest possible standards, packed with state-of-the-art equipment for both analysis and synthesis.
For NMR in the solution and solid state, we have 10 spectrometers at field strengths from 200-800 MHz; mass spectrometry utilises EI, ESI, APCI, MALDI and FAB instrumentation, including LC and GC interfaces. New combinatorial chemistry laboratories, equipped with a modern fermentation unit, are available. We have excellent facilities for the synthesis and characterisation of bio-molecules, including advanced mass spectrometry and NMR stopped-flow spectrometers, EPR, HPLC, FPLC, AA.
World-class facilities are available for small molecule and macromolecular X-ray diffraction, utilising both single crystal and powder methods. Application of diffraction methods at high pressures is a particular strength, and we enjoy strong links to central facilities for neutron, muon and synchrotron science in the UK and further afield. We are one of the world's leading centres for gas-phase electron diffraction.
Also available are instruments for magnetic and electronic characterisation of materials (SQUID), electron microscopy (SEM, TEM), force-probe microscopy, high-resolution FTRaman and FT-IR, XPS and thermal analysis. We have also recently installed a new 1,000- tonne pressure chamber, to be used for the synthesis of materials at high pressures and temperatures. Fluorescence spectroscopy and microscopy instruments are available within the COSMIC Centre. Dedicated computational infrastructure is available, and we benefit from close links with the Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre.
Materials Chemistry has emerged as an important sub-discipline within Chemistry. It cross-cuts the traditional Organic/Inorganic/Physical boundaries of Chemistry and overlaps many disciplines from Engineering to the Biosciences.
Materials chemists now have a leading role in areas such as microelectronics, polymer science, catalysis and nanotechnology. They also make an important contribution to areas of more traditional chemistry such as the pharmaceutical sector where understanding the 'physical properties' of intermediates and products is now recognised as essential in optimising the synthesis and properties of pharmaceutically active ingredients in medicines.
The degree consists of advanced lecture courses such as:
These are studied concurrently with a predominantly practical based course offering an introduction to research methods.
Students then proceed to a period of full-time research project work leading to the submission of their Master's dissertation.
Lectures are given by leading researchers in the area of materials chemistry. The lecture courses are supported by tutorial sessions and assessed by examination in April/May.
The Introduction to Research Methods course includes an exciting problem solving exercise where you learn important skills such as Communicating Science, Innovation, Dealing with Intellectual Property and Grant Application Writing, together with a literature survey and written report, defining the scope of the subsequent individual research project work.
On completion of the course, you should have developed a depth of comprehension and critique in the core elements of your subject area, including:
Additionally you will have enhanced your professional/practical skills through:
You will also have had the opportunity to develop transferable skills such as:
This analytical chemistry masters is structured around a solid core comprised of the three main analytical techniques – Mass spectrometry, NMR spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction. Each of these techniques contains a number of key common themes (data collection, analysis and management). Supporting modules feature further analytical techniques and serve to embed themes of Good Laboratory Practice (GLP), facility management and enterprise into the programme. A group analytical project develops interpersonal skills and the ability to work in a team and will be the first opportunity for students to independently fully exercise some of the components of the course taught in the first semester. The integral research project provides an opportunity to explore any of the main themes directly or as part of a collaborative synthetic/analytical investigation.
Analytical Chemistry is the largest employment area for the chemical sciences. The Instrumental Analytical Chemistry MSc gives you a boost to your bachelor’s degree that significantly increases your employability. We offer an advanced, instrumentation-driven postgraduate education in modern analytical chemistry with some elements in combination with one or more specialist research areas such as synthesis or data science.
You will receive comprehensive, hands-on, training with state-of-the-art research-led instrumentation in the techniques and provision of Mass Spectrometry, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy and X-ray Diffraction. This training will then be used in your research project, which focuses on the application of these techniques to most areas of mainstream chemistry.
The MSc masters in analytical chemistry programme will provide you with knowledge, understanding and strong practical skills in:
¹ Analytical science currently defined by the EPSRC as principally consisting of mass spectrometry, NMR spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction
With a masters in analytical chemistry you could find employment with:
Learning how to make discoveries that will contribute to a better understanding of the fundamental behaviour of molecules and materials.
Most chemical research involves synthesising and characterising new molecules. So basically, a trial and error system. This specialisation goes one step further: it aims at fundamentally unravelling the properties of molecules and materials. How do pharmaceutical molecules arrange in different forms and how does this affect their efficiency as a drug? And in what way does the molecular structure of a polymer influence the mechanical strength of plastics? We try to find the answers by developing theory and applying physical set-ups for advanced spectroscopic experiments, such as high magnetic fields, free-electron lasers and nuclear magnetic resonance.
Thanks to all our research facilities being located on the Radboud campus, you’ll be able to perform your research with advanced spectroscopic methods. You get to choose the focus of your research. Some students work on biomolecules while others prefer for example solar cells, plastics or hydrogels. It’s even possible to specialise in the development of new technology.
Studying at the interface between physics and chemistry means collaborating and communicating with people from different scientific backgrounds. Moreover, you’ll be trained to work with large-scale facilities and complex devices. These qualities will be useful in both research and company environments. Jobs are plentiful, as almost all industrial processes involve physical chemistry.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/science/physical
- Unlike at (many) other universities, all physical and chemical Material Science departments are combined in one institute: the Institute for Molecules and Materials (IMM). Therefore, collaborating is second nature to us.
- Radboud University hosts a large number of advanced spectroscopic facilities. As a Master’s student, you’ll get the chance to work with devices that are unique in Europe and even some that cannot be found anywhere else in the world.
- We have multiple collaborations with companies that, for example, analyse complex mixtures such as biofuels, characterising hydrogels, and develop anti-caking agents for rock-salt.
- During the courses and internship(s), you’ll meet a wide group of researchers in a small-scale and personal setting: a good starting point for your future network.
About 75 percent of our students start their career with a PhD position. However, eventually most students end up as researchers, policy advisors, consultants or managers in companies and governmental organisations. Whatever job you aspire, you can certainly make use of the fact that you have learned to:
Solve complex problems in a structured way
Understand the professional jargon of different disciplines and work in a multidisciplinary environment
Use mathematical computer tools
Perform measurements with complex research equipment
Graduates have found jobs at for example:
- ETH Zurich
- UC Berkeley
- Various spin-off companies, like Noviotech and Spinnovation
Physical Chemistry at Radboud University goes beyond the characterisation of molecules and materials. We focus on fundamental knowledge: What do spectroscopic measurements really mean? And how can we explain the behaviour of certain molecules or materials?
- Advanced spectroscopy
Radboud University hosts a large range of advanced spectroscopic facilities. Think of the High Field Magnetic Laboratory, FELIX laboratory for free-electron lasers, NMR facility, scanning probe lab, etc. As a Master’s student in Physical Chemistry, you’ll get an overview of all these different methods, and you’ll be able to apply your knowledge as a member of a laboratory. Some of our students choose to focus on the development of new scientific methods.
- Bridging the gap between chemistry and physics
We believe in knowledge transfer between chemists and physicists. That’s why in Nijmegen all material research is combined in one institute: the Institute for Molecules and Materials (IMM). During your Master’s, you’ll experience this interplay in the lectures and internships. Once graduated, you’ll be able to understand the vernacular of both disciplines and in that way bridge the gap between chemistry and physics.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/science/physical
This 12-month course is ideal if you want to develop skills in a range of areas. It includes project work and an introduction to research-level theory. You’ll take taught classes for the first two semesters. In the third semester, you’ll work on an extended research project of your own.
Employers value this kind of experience. By the time you graduate, you’ll have proved you can work within a research group, organise your own research, complete a project and communicate your findings.
Our graduates are highly valued in the chemical and pharmaceutical sector. They work all over the world for companies including AkzoNobel, Amgen, AstraZeneca, Corus, Dow Chemicals, GSK, Smith and Nephew and Syngenta. Many move on to PhD study, then careers in research or teaching.
Chemistry is vital to the way we live. It helps power industry and drive economic growth. Polymer science contributes to advances in everything from biology to engineering and medicine. As a researcher in industry or academia you could be involved in work that improves lives and changes the way we see the world.
Top-quality research directly informs our teaching. The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) rates 98 per cent of our work world-class or internationally excellent. You’ll learn about the very latest developments from experts in theory and spectroscopy, synthesis, analytical science, chemical biology and materials.
We’ll train you to use our modern analytical instrumentation. We have NMR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, x-ray crystallography, polymer characterisation methods and advanced microscopy. We also have a team of technicians to assist with spectroscopic services. There are labs for molecular biology, protein chemistry, polymer/colloid synthesis and materials characterisation.
You’ll carry out two smaller laboratory projects prior to starting your main research project, to develop practical and scientific communication skill. You also undertake a Research and Presentation Skills module to further develop the higher level skills needed for research.
Lectured modules consist of a wide range of segments, spanning the breadth of chemistry, from which you can choose, to tailor your MSc to your strengths and interests.
We use a mixture of lectures, laboratory practicals, workshops and individual research projects. You may tailor the area of your research project to your particular interests. Assessment of taught modules is through examination, laboratory reports and coursework. Assessment of the project is through a 15,000-word dissertation, oral presentation and viva, as well as assessed performance during the project.