BSc (Hons) in Chemistry

  • Programme Aims:
    • To provide students with a strong foundation in all principal areas of chemical science.
    • To provide students with knowledge in developing career and solving real-life chemical problems, including those in the environmental area, and to meet the needs from government, education, industrial or commercial sectors.
  • Programme Features:
    Train for Employment and Postgraduate Studies. 
    The curriculum is designed to equip students with adequate knowledge in both Pure and Applied Chemistry so that they are adequately and flexibly trained for both employment and postgraduate studies locally or overseas.
    Final Year Research Project. 
    To train students to be able to apply their knowledge acquired in courses to the solution of real-life problems, an independent research project (i.e., Final Year Project) conducted under the supervision of an academic staff is a graduation requirement for all students.
    Hands-On Training in Modern Analytical Instrumentation. 
    Particular emphasis has been put on training students in modern analytical techniques and the use of chemical instrumentation in an early stage of their studies so that their final year project work can be well supported. In training students on the use of modern chemical instrumentation, a strictly "hands-on" approach is adopted.
    Summer Internship Programme. 
    To provide students with industrial work experience, we offer a 2-month summer internship (with salary) for qualified Year 3 students to work in several major local chemical testing laboratories as well as chemical manufacturing plants in the Pearl River Delta region in China.
    Summer Research Programme and Student Assistant Scheme. 
    Several fellowships are offered every year to support students who are keen on undertaking summer research work on a full-time basis with their chosen faculty members. To promote service learning, students are invited to enrol in our Student Assistant Scheme to assist our department in various academic and community service activities. Under this Scheme, students can develop inter-personal and organizational skills.
  • Programme Structure:
    In the first three years of study, students will take core courses to build up their basic knowledge in various chemistry fields. In the final year, students can choose a wide variety of advanced chemistry courses as their Major elective courses.
    Common Year 1 Curriculum. 
    Starting from 2012, students will be admitted on a Faculty basis. All science students will enrol in a Common Year 1 curriculum, which requires them to take an introductory course offered by each of the five departments within the Faculty, i.e., biology, chemistry, computer science, mathematics and physics. Such curriculum design is founded on the fact that the solution of most scientific problems today requires a multi-disciplinary approach, i.e., knowledge and techniques from these five major science disciplines. To this end, we also offer an Integrated Science Laboratory course, which aims to demonstrate to students how to utilize knowledge learnt from different science disciplines to solve real-life problems.
    Declaration of Major Field of Study. 
    Students are encouraged to indicate the Major fields of studies they are interested in once they are admitted to the University, but formal declaration of Major is not required until Semester 2 of Year 1. There will be No Admission Quota into any of the science programmes of studies provided that the students have achieved a minimum grade required in the Introductory course pertains to that Major.
    Broad-Based Whole Person Education. 
    Students must complete a total of 129 units and gain an overall grade point average of 2.0 for graduation. Of the 129 units, 38 units (ca. 30%) are for General Education (GE) courses, 61 units are Major discipline core and elective courses. This design provides a broad-based whole person education while retaining a focus on a specific academic discipline, Chemistry, in this case.
    The detailed breakdown of the 4-Year Curriculum. 


    Required Core Courses and Electives


    Final Year Project/Capstone courses


    General Education (GE)


    Core Requirements


    Distribution requirements




    Total (minimum)


    GE Core Requirements  
    English Language#


    Chinese Language#


    Values and the Meaning of Life


    Information Management Technology          


    Physical Education (Two Semesters)


    Public Speaking




    History and Civilization




    GE Distribution Requirements*  




    Communication / Visual Arts


    Science / Chinese Medicine


    Social Sciences




    ^ At least 36 units must be gained from upper level courses (Level 3 and Level 4)
    * Science students are required take one 3-unit course from each discipline except Science/Chinese Medicine
    # GE Courses required to be taken in Year 1 as stipulated by the University.

    Major Discipline Courses, Supporting Courses and General Education Courses. 
    Major Discipline Courses. These are courses required for all Chemistry Majors and are offered by the Chemistry Department. These courses are further categorized into Major Core courses, which are considered so fundamental that they are required for all Chemistry Majors, and Major Elective courses, which are the more advanced or specialized courses that students can choose based on their own interests.

    Supporting Courses. These include all the science, mathematics and computing courses required in a chemistry curriculum. Many of these courses have syllabi tailor-made to provide support and breadth to the students' Major discipline courses.

    General Education Courses. These courses constitute an integral part of a broad-based "whole person" education. They include courses on Value and the Meaning of Life, Languages and Public Speaking, Information Management Technology, basic quantitative skills (Numeracy), History and Civilization, Arts, Business, Communication/Visual Arts and Social Sciences. The number of units required for these courses is 38 (ca. 30%), which emphasizes exposure and the development of generic skills.
    Final Year Project (6-unit Year Project or 3-unit Semester Project) 
    This independent research project, conducted under the supervision of an academic staff, represents a capstone course in our curriculum. All Chemistry Majors are required to take the Final Year Project for at least one semester (i.e., Final Year Project I). Students who are interested in pursuing a chemistry-related career or postgraduate studies in Chemistry or related fields are encouraged to take an additional semester project (i.e., Final Year Project II) in order to gain additional laboratory and research skills. Upon completion of the project work, students are required to write up their results in the form of a thesis and give oral presentations to the faculty members and their student peers in an open forum.

BSc (Hons) in Chemistry (4-Year Programme)
(intended for 2018-2019 and onwards cohorts)
Year 1 (Total 31 units) 
Sem 1   Sem 2  
Essence of Computing*^ 3 Introduction to Biology*^ 3
Introduction to Phys & Energy Sci*^ 3 Integrated Science Laboratory* 1
Introduction to Math & Statistics*^ 3 Introduction to Chemistry* 3
English I 3 English II 3
Quantitative Reasoning 3 University Chinese 3
Free Elective* 3 Values and the Meaning of Life 3
Total 15 Total 16
Year 2 (Total 31.5 units) 
Sem 1   Sem 2  
Organic Chemistry I                             3 Organic Chemistry II 3
Organic Chemistry Lab I 1 Organic Chemistry Lab II 1
General Chemistry 3 Physical Chemistry I 3.5
Integrated Chemistry Tutorials I 0 Analytical Chemistry 3
Healthy Lifestyle 2 Analytical Chemistry Lab 1
History and Civilization 3 Integrated Chemistry Tutorials II 0
Free Elective Course 3 The Art of Persuasion 2
    Interdisciplinary Thematic Course 3
Total 15 Total 16.5
Year 3 (Total 34.5 units) 
Sem 1   Sem 2  
Physical Chemistry II         3.5 Inorganic Chemistry 3
Physical Chemistry Lab I 1 Inorganic Chemistry Lab 1
Instrumental Analysis 3 Physical Chemistry Lab II 1
Instrumental Analysis Lab 1 Biochemistry 3
Interdisciplinary Thematic
3 General Education Course 3
Free Elective Courses 6 Free Elective Courses 6
Total 17.5 Total 17
Year 4 (Total 32 units) 
Sem 1   Sem 2  
Integrated Chemistry Lab 1 Major Elective Courses 9
Major Elective Courses 6 Free Elective Courses 6
Free Elective Courses 6    
Final Year Project I
Dissertation in Chemistry

Total 16 Total 15
Total Major Required Course Unit:                                                                                  67 
*This course can be taken in either Sem 1 or Sem 2.
^To take at least two courses out from the pool. 

List of Major Elective Courses

CHEM 4006 Environmental Chemistry and Pollution Control 3
CHEM 4017 Environmental Analysis 3
CHEM 4025 Advanced Instrumental Analysis 3
CHEM 4026 Advanced Materials 3
CHEM 4027 Bioanalytical Chemistry 3
CHEM 4035 Bioorganic and Natural Products Chemistry 3
CHEM 4036 Fundamentals and Applications of Chemical Processes 3
CHEM 4037 Materials Science: Solid State, Surface Chemistry & Catalysis 3
CHEM 4045 Organic Synthesis 3
CHEM 4046 Organometallic Chemistry 3
CHEM 4047 Pharmaceutical Chemistry 3
CHEM 4055 Polymer Chemistry 3
CHEM 4056 Special Topics in Chemistry 3
CHEM 4057 Spectroscopic Techniques for Structure Determination 3
CHEM 4065 Structural Methods in Chemistry 3
CHEM 4899 Final Year Project II** 3
** It can be taken in lieu of one 3-unit Major elective course with departmental approval.

Chemistry Department GE Distribution courses

Course Code Course Title Units
GDSC 1015 Coffee with profs – The fascinating science of everyday life 3
GDSC 1016 Ocean Voyage – Science in the sea 3

Minimum Requirement(s) for year one students to apply:
(1)  a minimum cGPA of 2.0; and
(2)  a grade of C in CHEM1005 Introduction to Chemistry or a grade of C in CHEM1015 Foundation of Chemistry