Module Details

The information contained in this module specification was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change, either during the session because of unforeseen circumstances, or following review of the module at the end of the session. Queries about the module should be directed to the member of staff with responsibility for the module.
Title Key Skills for Chemists 3
Code CHEM385
Coordinator Dr JW Gaynor
Year CATS Level Semester CATS Value
Session 2019-20 Level 6 FHEQ First Semester 7.5

Pre-requisites before taking this module (or general academic requirements):



This module aims to help Chemistry students develop skills needed for further educational opportunities or employment in a wide range of chemical and non-chemical based sectors.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) By the end of the employability section of the module, students should be able to demonstrate both a familiarity with, and an understanding of, the importance of transferable skills to the workplace.

(LO2) By the end of the module, students should be able to use scientific databases effectively for literature and citation searches.

(LO3) By the end of the module, students should be able to find relevant information from online chemical databases regarding chemical reactions and structures

(LO4) By the end of the module, students should be able to apply the database skills in writing a report drawing from scientific literature.

(S1) Teamwork

(S2) Communication Skills

(S3) Lifelong learning skills

(S4) Organisational skills

(S5) IT skills

(S6) Commercial awareness

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Lectures: Database skills lectures (2) / Employability (12). More lectures will be available, but students choose which to attend.
Notes: Lecture attendance and professionalism are considered the first part of a number of assignments and failure to attend lectures will result in students being unable to complete some assignments in full.

Small group tutorials (4 sessions over 5h), supported by timetabled time with no location/academic (4h) for group work planning.

Workshops: Database workshop (3h); Academic led employability workshops (8h)




Lectures: A variety of lectures delivered by course staff, wider university colleagues and external speakers. Timings and content will vary from year to year based on available speakers but lectures possibly include, but are not restricted to, the following: course introduction (welcome week); an introduction to the careers service; skill articulation for application preparation materials; interview technique; further education opportunities (MSc/Teaching); Intellectual property; industry lectures; resilience and social media; commercial awareness etc.

Group work: Students will participate in a group project where they will act as both a facilitator and a recipient. The project will be based around the preparation, delivery and evaluation of a session for their peers. Where possible, timetable depending, students can personalise their route through the group work to focus on their future plans (ie, chemical industry, teaching, further research, non-science, etc).

Workshops / Tutorials: These will help facilitate the group work above but also give students the chance to further develop their employability skills through presentations, for example.

VITAL exercises: These are all linked to the various lectures, workshops and tutorials. They include mini-employability tasks (possibly including, but not restricted to: surveys; reflective writing; visiting the careers service; CV preparation; interview scenario critique; psychometric test; video interviewing software; peer review processes, etc)


Advanced structure based searches using Reaxys including properties, reactions, stereochemistry, generic groups, atom mapping, reagents, non-standard bonding (e.g. cyclypentadiene), variable atoms.

Recommended Texts

Reading lists are managed at Click here to access the reading lists for this module.

Teaching Schedule

  Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab Practicals Fieldwork Placement Other TOTAL
Study Hours 14



Timetable (if known)              
Private Study 41


EXAM Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
CONTINUOUS Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
Employability - Multiple tutorials, workshops and assignments      75       
Databases - Database workshop and electronic report (~1500 words)      25