Can you see yourself working abroad or using a foreign language at some point in your career? As the world becomes smaller and boundaries dissolve, such opportunities will be increasingly available for the next generation of scientists. If you enjoy languages, but your main interest lies with chemistry, then our Chemistry with a Modern Language programme might be for you.
You can currently choose to study one of five languages a Birmingham: French, German, Japanese, Mandarin or Spanish. Chinese and Japanese are only available from beginner level. French, German and Spanish have 8 levels available (from beginner to post A level).
Each year contains 120 credits of taught material, which is delivered in modules that are typically worth 20 credits.
Core modules (60 credits in each year) are taken by all students enrolled on both single honours and major/minor degree programmes and cover those fundamentals of inorganic, organic and physical chemistry that we deem essential. Year 1 also includes a self-paced maths module.
You will also take 20 credits of language modules each year, which develop both communication skills and cultural awareness. These courses are delivered by staff in the University’s Department of Modern Languages.
The remaining 40 credits in each year comprise modules designed to support these core courses and include optional chemistry modules, mathematics courses, project work and laboratory modules, as well as courses which focus on communications skills and employability.
The remaining 40 credits in each year comprise laboratory or project modules (with embedded communications and employability skills) designed to support these core courses, allowing you to develop your practical skills and techniques as well as consolidate the associated theory from your lectures.
This degree programme does not require you to spend time abroad. However should you wish to spend some time at a foreign university, for example to carry out a Summer research project, we can make enquiries on your behalf using the contacts, we have set up through our Chemistry with Study Abroad programme (F106).
In Year 1, you will take core modules in the traditional sub-disciplines of inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry, all of which are supported by two additional modules comprising an extensive laboratory work programme. The remaining 20 credits is your chosen modern language.
Those of you who do not have A-level maths – don’t worry! We provide a self-paced introductory maths module in Semester 1, which will bring you up to speed with the common mathematical techniques needed for chemistry. All students take this module, whether they have A-level maths or not, since not all A-level maths syllabuses cover the same material.
In Semester 2, additional mathematics is embedded in the physical chemistry module, as you begin to apply your mathematical skills to chemical problems. All of the maths material is delivered by staff from Chemistry, which ensures you are equipped with those skills you need to tackle the more physical and theoretical aspects of our courses.
In Year 2, you will build on material from your first year as we employ a combination of lectures and practicals to further your understanding of the fundamental aspects of chemistry. In addition to core modules in organic, inorganic and physical chemistry and the associated laboratory work, you will continue to develop your language skills.
Alongside lecture courses in the three core chemistry sub-disciplines, you will also take advanced classes in your chosen modern language. You will also carry out a 40-credit research project, which can be practical-based research, computer-based research or a literature dissertation. If you are interested in entering the teaching profession, you may instead opt for a project in the area of chemical education. You will choose the topic of your project from a pool of titles and work with your project supervisor to tailor the project to your particular research interests.
Focusing on transferable skills and employability, is embedded throughout the course from the outset and will ensure that you are equipped with the ICT, presentation, team-working and problem-solving skills, which are seen as crucial by employers.
MSci or BSc?
The first two years of this BSc course are interchangeable with, and identical to, our corresponding MSci programme (F1RY), which means you can delay your final choice of degree (MSci or BSc) until the end of Year 2. MSci study is dependent upon performance: you will need a 60% overall mark and pass all core modules in Year 2 in order to transfer on to the MSci programme.