CHEM3001 Essential Chemical Skills

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 3 core unit in the Physical and Analytical specialisation in the Chemistry major sequence
  • Level 3 core unit in the Synthetic specialisation in the Chemistry major sequence
  • The area of knowledge for this unit is Mathematical and Physical Sciences
  • Category B broadening unit for students
  • Level 3 elective
This unit is compulsory for all students taking a major in Chemistry. It teaches and assesses the essential chemical skills required for all Level 3 units of study in chemistry. Emphasis is placed on more advanced aspects of core chemical principles and experimental techniques common to physical, analytical, inorganic and organic chemistry, building on those introduced in CHEM2001 Core Chemical Concepts and Techniques. In addition, students are introduced to the literature of chemistry, as well as important aspects of occupational health and safety relevant to the chemical laboratory. Topics include handling of hazardous chemicals; classification and labelling of chemicals; physical hazards in the chemistry laboratory (including radiation, laser, vacuum, cryogenic and electrical hazards); laboratory design; and safety auditing. The unit also includes a series of lectures that demonstrate the chemistry behind issues of current global and local concern, the chemical approaches to mitigating or eliminating the impact of these issues, and future strategies that chemists will employ to help humanity.
Students are able to (1) understand principles and concepts related to (a) legislative requirements for management of hazardous substances; (b) principles for safe work in a chemical laboratory; and (c) the diverse literature of chemistry and chemicals; (2) acquire basic practical skills in working safely in a chemical laboratory and generic skills for working as a chemist, ie. understanding occupation health and safety legislation; and (3) further their skills development in scientific writing, problem solving, critical analysis and teamwork, as well as more advanced research skills specific to the discipline.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) communication activities; (2) a final written examination paper; and (3) scientific reports based on laboratory exercises. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Allan McKinley
Unit rules
CHEM2001 Core Chemical Concepts and Techniques
CHEM2210 Structure Determination and Physical Chemistry
CHEM3309 Chemistry in the Workplace
Contact hours
lectures: 2 per week for 13 weeks; lab sessions: 6 x 6-hours
Unit Outline
Semester 1_2019 [SEM-1_2019]
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available at the University Co-operative Bookshop (from early January) and appropriate administrative offices for students to consult. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.