Chemistry with Study in Industry


UCAS Code: F106
Typical offer: 
AAB with an A in Chemistry
Four years

International students
Don't meet our
entry requirements? 
Pathway programme at our International College

How to apply for this course

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About the course

It's great being able to do research and it actually be used in a product someone wants to buy. It’s an amazing feeling when you take the theory behind all the quantum mechanical equations we learn, and get to use them in real life.

Shannon North, MChem Chemistry with Study in Industry

On the Chemistry with Study in Industry degree, you'll spend your third year working at a leading organisation in the chemical industry. You'll pay reduced fees for the year you're on placement and most students earn salaries during their placements too.

Placements aren't guaranteed – it’s your responsibility to secure one but we’ll do everything we can to help. During your first year, you'll attend lectures that teach you the skills you'll need to plan your year in industry. There are also CV writing and interview workshops, and you'll get advice from experts working in the chemical industry. In second year, you'll work with your personal tutor and course director to make the arrangements for a placement in your third year.

During your placement, you will have academic and industrial supervisors to support you, distance learning materials to work through, and a visit from a member of staff to make sure you are settling in. At the end, you will be assessed by your supervisor in industry and produce a final report.

The course is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry, which means that we cover all of the topics and training that you need to graduate into a professional chemistry career. Your placement will give you even more hands-on experience to put on your CV. You'll cover some topics by distance learning during your year in industry, and in fourth year there is support to help you catch-up on the teaching you missed. Some of the subjects you'll cover in Sheffield are set out in the 'Course structure' tab.

At the start of your first year, you will be given a laboratory resource pack, including a lab coat, safety glasses and safety gloves, so you can start practical work right away. There are also maths classes, and a physics course for students who don't have an A level in physics. You'll do more practical work as the course progresses and by the time you've completed your year in industry, you'll be confident handling sensitive chemicals and conducting experiments over multiple days.

Fourth year
The fourth year has more practical work and more options to specialise. There are a range of advanced lecture modules to choose from, and you'll run your own in-depth research project over six months, working with professional scientists in one of our world-class research groups. This can lead to your work being published in respected scientific journals before you've even graduated.

Course structure

Industry structure

Below are some examples of topics covered in this degree from the current academic year. There may be some changes before you start your course. For more details see our online prospectus.

Year 1:

  • Organic Chemistry: functional groups and their reactivity, reaction mechanisms.
  • Inorganic Chemistry: structure and bonding of main group and transition metal compounds.
  • Physical Chemistry: electronic structure of molecules, kinetics, thermodynamics.
  • Laboratory Chemistry: developing your key skills in analytical chemistry, spectroscopy and synthetic chemistry.
  • Mathematics: all students study a maths course (suitable to their background) covering the core mathematics needed for the remainder of the chemistry degree.
  • Employability and Workplace Preparation: to enhance your employability and transferable skills in preparation for industrial placement applications.

Students also have the choice of modules from across the University, subject to available timetabling. Common choices include:

  • Physical Principles for Chemistry. (If you don't have A-Level Physics (or equivalent) this module is non-optional.)
  • An Introduction to Biology for Physical Scientists.
  • Chemistry in the World Around Us.

Year 2:

  • Organic Chemistry: stereochemistry, designing syntheses of complex target molecules.
  • Inorganic Chemistry: solid state materials, environmental chemistry.
  • Physical Chemistry: electrochemistry, elementary quantum mechanics.
  • Chemistry Laboratory: students gain experience in modern methods of separation, characterisation and analytical techniques, and advanced synthetic techniques such as Schlenk techniques for manipulating air and moisture sensitive compounds.

Year 3:

  • Industrial Placement: during your placement, you will gain much practical experience of chemistry research in an industrial setting. You will be assigned both an industrial tutor, who will provide guidance on a day-to-day basis, and an academic tutor from Sheffield to provide support and who will visit during the year. By the end of the year, you will write a final report and give a short presentation about your work carried out during your placement.
  • Self-Study Assignments: Students study selected material from year 3 of the MChem course to ensure their chemistry knowledge is comparable and to provide a suitable background for the advanced lectures in year 4.

Year 4:
On your return to Sheffield you will do a major research project, working in an academic research lab on a project at the cutting edge of science. Students are trained in research methods appropriate to their field and take advantage of the state-of-the-art research facilities at Sheffield.

Lectures in Year 4 allow students to explore a broad range of topics at the cutting edge of chemistry research. There is also opportunity to choose some Year 3 topics which students may not have experienced during their year away from Sheffield. Students currently select 6 courses per semester, allowing them to develop their own interests and specialities. Current options include:

  • Frontier Molecular Orbital Theory
  • Supramolecular Chemistry
  • Metals in Medicine
  • Stereoselective Synthesis
  • Mechanism and Reactivity in Organic Chemistry
  • Quantum Chemistry
  • Advanced Spectroscopy and Theory
  • Homogeneous Catalysis
  • New Materials
  • Chemistry of Radical Polymerisation
  • Polymer Architectures
  • Graph Theory for Chemists
  • Physical Chemistry of Heterogeneous Catalysis
  • Fundamentals of Polymer Science.
  • Mechanistic Organic Chemistry
  • Heterogeneous Catalysis
  • Medicinal Chemistry
  • Metals in Organic Synthesis
  • Chemistry in Space
  • Photochemistry and Molecular Photonics
  • Biomimetic Nanoparticle Synthesis
  • Chemistry of High-Energy Materials
  • Enzyme Catalysis
  • Organic Chemistry of the Main Group Elements
  • Biophysical Chemistry
  • Nanochemistry

The content of our courses is reviewed annually to make sure it's up-to-date and relevant. Individual modules are occasionally updated or withdrawn. This is in response to discoveries through our world-leading research; funding changes; professional accreditation requirements; student or employer feedback; outcomes of reviews; and variations in staff or student numbers. In the event of any change we'll consult and inform students in good time and take reasonable steps to minimise disruption.