The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2020

Course handbook


This course will be a very different experience from your other courses! Undergraduate research projects involve students in an original research project under the supervision of a Discipline of Chemistry academic staff member. You will be making a contribution to real research in the areas of inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, materials science, nanotechnology, and so on. Through this course, you will gain the ability of working safely, independently and collaboratively in a research lab, formulating a research plan, collecting data, assessing data quality, interpreting and communicating on the basis of available data. In this course you will be doing individual research guided by a Discipline of Chemistry academic for the duration of one semester, which includes regular face-to-face meetings, instructed lab work supervised by the academic, and timely feedback on your lab notebook, lab performance and project reports.

Availability2020 Course Timetables


  • Semester 1 - 2020
  • Semester 2 - 2020

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Work safely in a laboratory setting;

2. Apply theoretical knowledge and practical skills to a research project and on the collection and analysis of scientific data;

3. Work independently and collaboratively with peers to bring the project to satisfactory completion;

4. Communicate a scientific argument convincingly at a level and style appropriate to the audience.


Students will work on a project developed in collaboration with assigned supervisors and/or co-supervisors and/or a research team. Course assessment will involve:

1.  Written evidence of research methodology, i.e. laboratory notebook

2.  A progress report and a final project report

3.  A poster presentation, reviewed by academic and research staff

4.  Performance in laboratory

Students will be required to attend two 2-hour lectures during the semester (Weeks 1 and 5). Week 1 lectures will focus on Workplace Health and Safety, development research methodology, and contextual issues such as the chemical world, research in chemistry, the chemical industry and the importance of the scientific method. Week 5 lectures will focus on more practical issues leading up to course completion, such as compiling data, writing the final report, and giving a presentation.

Assumed knowledge

40 units of compulsory CHEM 2000 level courses in the Chemistry major.

Assessment items

Report: Laboratory Notebook

Presentation: Poster Presentation

Report: Final Project Report

Written Assignment: Progress Report

Tutorial / Laboratory Exercises: Experimental

Compulsory Requirements

In order to pass this course, each student must complete ALL of the following compulsory requirements:

General Course Requirements:

  • Individual Supervision: Induction Requirement - Students must attend and pass the induction requirements before attending these sessions. - All students are required to successfully complete a laboratory induction process for the specific laboratory that will house their project.

Contact hours


Individual Supervision

Face to Face On Campus 6 hour(s) per Week for 10 Weeks

Individual supervision for 60 hours per semester for the full semester (10 weeks, one day per week, 6 hours)


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for 2 Weeks

Self-Directed Learning

Self-Directed 60 hour(s) per Term Full Term


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Term Full Term

Poster Presentation