Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2012-2013 (archived)

Module CHEM40315: Making Organic Molecules

Department: Chemistry

CHEM40315: Making Organic Molecules

Type Open Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2012/13 Module Cap None.
Tied to


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Excluded Combination of Modules

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  • To teach the basic principles of synthetic organic chemistry.


  • Synthetic chemistry of carbonyl compounds.
  • Making C-C bonds using enolate chemistry.
  • Making C=C bonds using eliminations, the Wittig reaction and selective reductions.
  • Cycloadditions.
  • Aromaticity.
  • Electrophilic aromatic substitution reactions.
  • Oxidation reactions.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Synthesis of organic molecules using a variety of bond forming reactions.
  • Multistep organic synthesis.
  • The properties and chemistry of aromatic molecules.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Solving synthetic organic chemistry problems.
  • Elucidation of mechanisms using curly arrow approaches.
Key Skills:
  • Problem solving.
  • Developing the ability to learn independently within broad guidelines.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Lectures will provide the means to give concise, focussed presentation of the relevant subject matter of the module. They will be supported by reference to suitable text books and where appropriate by the distribution of written material or through links on DUO (on-line learning resource).
  • Problem sheets will be given regularly in lectures to help students gain an understanding of the concepts presented. These will be assessed formatively.
  • Workshops in which students work through synthetic organic chemistry problems will be used as support teaching.
  • Problems set in workshops will be assessed summatively.
  • Student performance will be assessed summatively through examination.
  • Formative assessments will provide the means for the student to demonstrate their acquisition of subject knowledge and the development of their problem solving skills. The tests will also provide opportunities for feedback, for students to gauge their progress, and for the Management Committee to monitor progress throughout the duration of the module.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 27 2 1 27
Workshops 4 1.5 6
Self Study 117
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Examination Component Weighting: 80%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Examination 1.5 100% Y
Component: Workshops Component Weighting: 20%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Workshops 6 100% Y

Formative Assessment:

Problem sheets distributed in lectures.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University