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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Chemistry : Chemistry

Undergraduate Course: Environmental Chemistry Level 11 (CHEM11041)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Chemistry CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis is a 20-credit Senior Honours lecture course on aspects of environmental chemistry. Its content provides examples of the application of chemistry principles and knowledge to the description and quantification of the chemistry of the environment and of the consequences of some of the human perturbations to it.

The Level 11 version of this course is a compulsory requirement for Senior Honours MChem students on degrees in Chemistry with Environmental & Sustainable Chemistry, but can be taken by Senior Honours MChem students on any Chemistry degree programme.

The course comprises of individual component lecture courses and associated tutorials or workshops.
Course description Overall, the course covers examples of the chemical processes occurring naturally in Earth's atmospheric, aquatic and soil environments; the impacts of human perturbations to these processes on historic, contemporary and future timescales; and simple quantification of the partitioning and movement of chemical components through environmental media.

The course content includes the following:
- the chemical composition and evolution of Earth's atmosphere in comparison with other selected planetary bodies
- qualitative and quantitative physical structure and chemical composition and processes in Earth's atmosphere
- chemical rationalisation of issues of current atmospheric concern (for example stratospheric ozone depletion, ground-level ozone production and urban air pollution)
- the nature, properties and evolution of soils and sediments
- the distribution and behaviour of metal and organic contaminants in soils and sediments
- the chemical equilibrium approach to speciation in aquatic systems and interpret speciation diagrams
- the distribution of, and exposure to, natural and manmade radionuclides in the environment
- the use of radionuclides as tracers of environmental processes
- the integration of environmentally meaningful laboratory data (e.g. octanol-water partition coefficients) into a quantitative treatment of the distribution, reactions and inter-phase transfer of environmental contaminants.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Chemistry 3A (CHEM09005) AND Chemistry 3B (CHEM09006) AND Chemistry 3P Practical and Transferable Skills (CHEM09007)
Prohibited Combinations Students MUST NOT also be taking Environmental Chemistry Level 10 (CHEM10048)
Other requirements Must include a weighted average of Grade C or higher in all Chemistry 3 courses AND a weighted average of Grade D or higher in Chemistry 3A and Chemistry 3B, at the first attempt; or with the permission of Head of School.
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2018/19, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 30, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 5, Summative Assessment Hours 2.5, Revision Session Hours 3, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 155 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 100 %, Coursework 0 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) One degree exam of 3 hours.
Feedback Feedback is provided through the tutorials and workshops associated with the individual component lecture courses. Problem material will be made available for preparation in advance of the tutorial or workshop. Although these are not marked, material should always be attempted in advance as they are a good self-check on how well the material from the lectures has been understood, and the tutorials provide the opportunity to ask questions to resolve any difficulties with a particular topic.
Opportunity for additional discussion and feedback for individual lecture courses is also arranged in the examination period.
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)3:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Show an understanding of chemical processes occurring naturally in Earth's atmospheric, aquatic and soil environments; the impacts of human perturbations to these processes; and simple quantification of the partitioning and movement of chemical components through environmental media.
  2. Apply this chemical knowledge to explain issues in environmental chemistry, including being able to integrate knowledge and skills across different areas of the course.
  3. Develop responses to problems and issues in aspects of environmental chemistry, demonstrating originality and creativity in how this knowledge is applied.
  4. Apply a set of numerical skills for solving problems in environmental chemistry, including where required combination of these skills from different areas of the course.
  5. Demonstrate a professional approach to autonomy and time-management in relation to self-study and in the researching of additional material relevant to the course.
Reading List
Recommendations on further reading will be provided by the individual lecturers.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Note-taking skills
Numerical data interpretation and analysis
Unseen problem solving skills
Keywordsenvironmental chemistry
Course organiserDr Mathew Heal
Tel: (0131 6)50 4764
Course secretaryMr Craig Smith
Tel: (0131 6)50 4710
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