Advanced Organic and Inorganic Chemistry

Module code: NT4007

The study of ecology and evolution is being revolutionised by the application of modern molecular genetic techniques such as genome sequencing using next-generation sequencing, and rapid genotyping methods (e.g. microsatellites and single nucleotide polymorphisms). These methods have become a powerful means to study biodiversity and to aid the conservation and management of populations. This means understanding molecular genetic techniques is essential for biologists interested in pursuing careers in these areas as well as those interested in evolutionary biology.

This module introduces modern molecular techniques of assessing genetic variation and explains how they can be used to investigate geographical patterns of genetic variation, genome evolution and behavioural ecology. The module also emphasises how to use molecular genetic analyses to answer questions relating to conservation and the environment. The emphasis is very much on a how-to approach embedded within a solid theoretical foundation.You will have learnt some of its core principles of organic and inorganic chemistry during your previous years at Leicester, but this module will give you a more advanced viewpoint, setting you up for further study, research or commercial opportunities.

Topics covered

  • The importance of spectroscopy (such as NMR, MS and IR) in the determination of the structure and shape of organic compounds and molecules
  • Principal types of pericyclic reaction
  • How mechanism relates to the selectivity of pericyclic reactions and why thermally and photochemically-activated molecules frequently exhibit contrasting selectivity, using this knowledge to predict the outcome of unseen reactions
  • How radicals and carbenes are generated, the common types and mechanisms of reaction
  • How to investigate the reactivity of transient species and the advantages and limitations of the high reactivity of transient intermediates
  • The application of basic and advanced topics in inorganic chemistry and appropriate physical methods to inorganic chemical problems
  • Key spectroscopic and analytical techniques for inorganic chemistry
  • The importance of inorganic chemistry in biomedicine and medicine
  • The importance of inorganic chemistry in catalysis

Learning

  • 66 hours of lectures
  • 4 hours of tutorials 
  • 230 hours of guided independent study

Assessment

  • Exam, 2 ½ hours (30%)
  • Exam, 2 ½ hours (30%)
  • Coursework (40%)