MEng Chemical Engineering with Energy and Environment

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Engineering Chemistry

Course unit fact file
Unit code CHEN10022
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? No


Part A - General Chemistry.

 - Electronic structure of the atom and periodicity.

- Chemical Bonding (including Lewis notation and VSEPR theory)

- Molecular Structure and Geometry

- Intermolecular Interactions

- Spectroscopy Basics

- Electrochemistry (including corrosion)

- Acid-Base Reactions (including titrations)


Part B - Organic Chemistry.

Fundamental aspects of structural organic chemistry including:

    - Organic chemistry and the chemical industry

    - Bonding in Carbon

    - Drawing and Naming Organic Molecules

    - Functional Groups

    - X-Ray diffraction and molecular structure

    - Isomerism

    - Conjugation, electron delocalisation and resonance structures

    - Intermolecular interactions and physical properties of organic substances


Fundamental aspects of organic chemical reactions including:

    - General aspects of chemical reactions

               - Nucleophilic substitution reactions and mechanisms (SN1 and SN2)

               - Elimination reactions and mechanisms (E1 and E2)

  - General aspects of chemical reactions



The unit aims to:

To build a basic understanding on general chemistry (part A) and organic chemistry (part B) relevant to Chemical Engineering processes. The unit has particular emphasis on atomic and molecular structure, molecular shape, and chemical bonding. An understanding is built up of organic chemistry and organic reaction mechanisms with an appreciation for the influence of acids, bases, redox reactions and pH.

Learning outcomes

ILO 1.Derive the electronic structure of atoms and use Lewis notation and VSEPR theory to predict electron arrangement and molecular shape.

ILO 2.Demonstrate understanding of the basics of IR spectroscopy, electrochemical and acid/base reactions.

ILO 3.Use the pKa scale of relative acidities of various acids and the basicity of bases to predict the outcome of simple proton transfer processes.

ILO 4.Name and draw, using various different representations, various organic molecules and their isomers.

ILO 5.Draw, recognise and name 3D structures and isomers of organic molecules.

ILO 6.Predict the effects of polarisation, resonance, conformation, steric interaction and ring-strain on simple organic molecules.

ILO 7.Describe and predict the mechanisms for nucleophilic substitution reactions and elimination reactions and use curly arrows.


Teaching and learning methods

Lectures provide fundamental aspects supporting the critical learning of the module and will be delivered as pre-recorded asynchronous short videos via our virtual learning environment.

Synchronous sessions will support the lecture material with Q&A and problem-solving sessions where you can apply the new concepts. Surgery hours are also available for drop-in support.

Students are expected to expand the concepts presented in the session and online by additional reading (suggested in the Online Reading List) in order to consolidate their learning process and further stimulate their interest to the module.

Study budget:

  • Core Learning Material (e.g. recorded lectures, problem solving sessions): 24 hours
  • Self-Guided Work (e.g. continuous assessment, extra problems, reading)     : 44 hours
  • Exam Style Assessment Revision and Preparation: 32 hours

Intellectual skills

Linking the ideas from the electronic structure of the atom through to reaction mechanisms in organic chemistry.

Practical skills

Derive and calculate molecular properties and pH values.

Draw and name organic molecules and their isomers.

Predict the outcome of organic reactions.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

Participation in the problem solving sessions and a lively discussion of the problems set will help to develops team working skills.

Assessment methods

Assessment Types

Total Weighting

Continuous assessment


Exam style assessments


Please note that the exam style assessments weighting may be split over midterm and end of semester exams. 

Feedback methods

Feedback on problems and examples, feedback on coursework and exams, and model answers will also be provided through the virtual learning environment. A discussion board provides an opportunity to discuss topics related to the material presented in the module.

Recommended reading

Reading lists are accessible through the Blackboard system linked to the library catalogue.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 32
Lectures 24
Independent study hours
Independent study 44

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Aline Saiani Unit coordinator
Christopher Hardacre Unit coordinator

Return to course details