Module FXX-1106:
Chemistry Laboratory 1

Module Facts

Run by School of Natural Sciences

10 Credits or 5 ECTS Credits

Semester 1

Organiser: Dr Enlli Harper

Overall aims and purpose

The students should develop fundamental laboratory skills, including analytical and preparative skills which are required for experimental chemistry within main stream chemistry and skills to observe and record scientific experiments and interpret and document subsequent data in a professional scientific frame.

Students should gain awareness of safe and diligent laboratory practice and foster planning and time management skills both as single learners and in peer groups. Also the students should be able use the Professional Chemistry Language on a Basic User Level (correct use and understanding of basic concepts, terminology and techniques).

Course content

Pre-requisites: A2 Chemistry

CORE MODULE. This module is CORE to your degree programme. In order to progress to the next year of study you MUST successfully complete and pass this module. (There are NO resits for practical modules).

This practical course consists of a series of experiments covering the three principal areas of chemistry, namely inorganic, organic and physical chemistry. The experiments are chosen to familiarise with primary skills required for experimental chemistry and to illuminate theoretical background covered during chemistry lecture modules.

Course Team : Dr Enlli Harper Laboratory & Teaching Academic (Lab Supervision), Dr Juma'A Al-Dulayymi Semester 1 Introductory Lectures Dr L Murphy, Dr M Lahmann, Prof M A Beckett, Dr E Harper, Dr C Gwenin, Dr H Tai

RESOURCE IMPLICATIONS ESSENTIAL READING - None RECOMMENDED READING 1. Practical Skills in Chemistry (2nd Edition) John Dean, Alan M Jones , David Holmes , Rob Reed, Allan Jones, Jonathan Weyers SPECIFIC RESOURCE IMPLICATIONS FOR STUDENTS - None

Assessment Criteria


Good (~60%). Knowledge base covers all essential aspects of subject matter dealt with in the programme and shows good evidence of enquiry beyond this. Conceptual understanding is good. Problems of a familiar and unfamiliar nature are solved in a logical manner; solutions are generally correct and acceptable. Experimental work is carried out in a reliable and efficient manner, with a good appreciation of data analysis shown in write-ups. Performance in transferable skills is sound and shows no significant deficiencies.


Excellent (>70%). Knowledge base is extensive and extends well beyond the work covered in the programme. Conceptual understanding is outstanding. Problems of a familiar and unfamiliar nature are solved with efficiency and accuracy; problem-solving procedures are adjusted to the nature of the problem. Experimental work are exemplary and show a thorough analysis and appraisal of experimental results, with appropriate suggestions for improvement. Performance in transferable skills is generally very good.


Threshold (40%). Knowledge and understanding of the content covered in the course is basic; Problems of a routine nature are generally adequately solved; Standard laboratory experiments are usually carried out with reasonable success though significance and limitations of experimental data and/or observations may not be fully recognised; Transferable skills are at a basic level.

Learning outcomes

  1. Students should be able to demonstrate general communication and collaborative skills

  2. Students should be able to demonstrate fundamental problem solving and critical thinking skills

  3. Students should be able to demonstrate the professional use of the Chemistry Language on a "Basic User Level"

  4. Students should be able to demonstrate the following fundamental manipulative laboratory skills (analytical, preparative)

  5. Students should be able to demonstrate the following fundamental professional scientific skills (observation, recording, interpretation, safety, time management, receiving and comprehending complex information)

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
Contaminated site 3
Intra & Inter molecular interactions 3
Gravimetric determination of nickel 12.5
Seperating a two component mixture 3
Particle in a box 3
Electrochemistry 12.5
Viscosity of Polymers 12.5
Where is my compound? 3
Analysis of a 3 component mixture 25
Nutmeg with saponification 12.5
Skills 10

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Private study 61

The practical element of this module has eleven x three hour practical classes and one write up week. The majority of the experiments will be carried out as single student experiments. Some parts of experiments will be carried out in pairs or in peer groups (4-6 students) to encourage communication and collaborative skills.


6 x 1 hour pre-laboratory lectures.


Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Safety-Consciousness - Having an awareness of your immediate environment, and confidence in adhering to health and safety regulations
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team

Subject specific skills

  • CC4 the ability to recognise and analyseProblems andPlanStrategies for theirSolution
  • CC7 information technology and data-processingSkills, relating toChemical information and data.
  • CP1 an ability to determine hazards associated with carrying out chemical experiments in terms of chemical toxicity, chemical stability and chemical reactivity and be able to find information to enable effective risk assessments to be carried out
  • CP2 Skills to handleChemicalsSafely andCarry out experiments andChemical reactions in aSafe manner, based on effective risk assessments
  • CP3 Skills required for theConduct of documented laboratoryProcedures involved inSynthesis and analysis, in relation to both inorganic and organicSystems
  • CP4 Skills in the monitoring, by observation and measurement, ofChemicalProperties, events orChanges, and theSystematic and reliable recording and documentation thereof
  • CP5 Skills in the operation ofStandardChemical instrumentation
  • CP7 the ability to interpret and explain the limits of accuracy of their own experimental data in terms ofSignificance and underlying theory
  • PS2 Skills in the employment ofCommonConventions andStandards inScientific writing, dataPresentation, and referencing literature
  • PS3 Problem-solvingSkills, relating to qualitative and quantitative information
  • PS4 numeracy and mathematicalSkills, including handling data, algebra, functions, trigonometry,Calculus, vectors andComplex numbers, alongside error analysis, order-of-magnitude estimations,Systematic use ofScientific units and different types of dataPresentation
  • PS7 basic interpersonalSkills, relating to the ability to interact with otherPeople and to engage in teamworking
  • PS8 time management and organisationalSkills, as evidenced by the ability toPlan and implement efficient and effective ways of working
  • SK1 are fullyConversant with major aspects ofChemical terminology
  • SK2 demonstrate aSystematic understanding of fundamentalPhysicochemicalPrinciples with the ability to apply that knowledge to theSolution of theoretical andPracticalProblems
  • SK4 demonstrate, withSupporting evidence, their understanding ofSynthesis, including related isolation,Purification andCharacterisation techniques
  • SK5 demonstrate an understanding of the qualitative and quantitative aspects ofChemical metrology and the importance of traceability
  • SK8 develop an understanding ofSafe workingPractice, in terms of managingChemical toxicity,ChemicalStability andChemical reactivity, through knowledge-based risk assessments

Pre- and Co-requisite Modules