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Unit of study_

CHEM2991: Molecular Stability and Reactivity (SSP)

Semester 1, 2021 [Normal day] - Remote

There are over 144 million chemical substances so far identified, a diversity that makes possible the rich fabric of the material and biological worlds. Underpinning this huge diversity are a few fundamental rules of electronic arrangements in atoms and molecules that determine what molecules will be stable and when they will undergo transformation by chemical reaction. This unit will describe these fundamental rules and investigate how electronic rearrangements stabilise molecules by forming covalent bonds. You will investigate the quantum theory of bonding and apply these concepts to establish the rules that govern bond geometries, aromaticity, substitution and elimination reactions. You will investigate the bonding of metal complexes and the relation between magnetism and structure in these compounds. You will learn the fundamentals of electronic and vibrational spectroscopies and how these techniques are used to measure molecular properties. Molecular Stability and Reactivity (SSP) differs from CHEM2921 in that it includes an additional seminar series on three research-led topics in chemistry. By doing this unit you will develop the fundamental understanding of chemical stability and reactivity essential for further work in all chemically related fields and have established a solid foundation for further study in chemistry.

Unit details and rules

Unit code CHEM2991
Academic unit Chemistry Academic Operations
Credit points 6
Prohibitions
? 
CHEM2921 or CHEM2521 or CHEM2401 or CHEM2911 or CHEM2915
Prerequisites
? 
A mark of 75 or above in (CHEM1111 or CHEM1911 or CHEM1991 or CHEM1011 or CHEM1901 or CHEM1903 or CHEM1011 or CHEM1001) and a mark of 75 or above in (CHEM1112 or CHEM1912 or CHEM1992 or CHEM1012 or CHEM1902 or CHEM1904 or CHEM1002)
Corequisites
? 
None
Assumed knowledge
? 

None

Available to study abroad and exchange students

Yes

Teaching staff

Coordinator Peter Harrowell, peter.harrowell@sydney.edu.au
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam (Record+) Type B final exam final exam
online exam
52.5% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO3 LO4
Presentation group assignment Laboratory presentation
2 presentations over a 9 week period
7% Multiple weeks 2 x ~10 min presentation
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3
Assignment Laboratory report
See Canvas for more details
18% Multiple weeks 4 x ~4 page reports
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO3 LO5 LO6
Online task In‐Semester Test 1
Online quiz
3.75% Week 05
Due date: 01 Apr 2021 at 17:00
60 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO2
Assignment SSP assignment 1
Written assignment
7.5% Week 06 2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO4
Online task In‐Semester Test 2
Online quiz
3.75% Week 11
Due date: 21 May 2021 at 17:00
60 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4 LO2
Assignment SSP assignment 2
Written assignment
7.5% Week 12 2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO4
group assignment = group assignment ?
Type B final exam = Type B final exam ?

Assessment summary

   

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range

Description

High distinction

85 - 100

At HD level, a student demonstrates a flair for the subject as well as a detailed and comprehensive understanding of achievement and is awarded to a student who demonstrates the ability to apply their subject knowledge and understanding to produce original solutions for novel or highly complex problems and/or comprehensive critical discussions of theoretical concepts.

Distinction

75 - 84

At DI level, a student demonstrates an aptitude for the subject and a well-developed understanding of the unit material. A ‘Distinction’ reflects excellent achievement and is awarded to a student who demonstrates an ability to apply their subject knowledge and understanding of the subject to produce good solutions for challenging problems and/or a reasonably well-developed critical analysis of theoretical concepts.

Credit

65 - 74

At CR level, a student demonstrates a good command and knowledge of the unit material. A ‘Credit’ reflects solid achievement and is awarded to a student who has a broad general understanding of the unit material and can solve routine problems and/or identify and superficially discuss theoretical concepts.

Pass

50 - 64

At PS level, a student demonstrates proficiency in the unit material. A ‘Pass’ reflects satisfactory achievement and is awarded to a student who has threshold knowledge.

Fail

0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see sydney.edu.au/students/guide-to-grades.

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

For each day after the deadline, 5% is deducted. After 10 days, the assessment is set to 0%.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 1. Review - 1st year organic 2. Representing reactions - curly arrows 3. Curly arrows workshop Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Week 02 4. Nucleophilic substitution 5. Nucleophilic substitution 6. Nucleophilic substitution - Hammonds rule Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Laboratory exericise Practical (4 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 03 7. Isomers 8. Elimination 9. Elimination Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Laboratory exericise Practical (4 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 04 10. Radicals - introduction 11. radicals - reactions 12. The chemical bond - history Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Laboratory exericise Practical (4 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 05 13. Bonding in polyatomic molecules 14. Electrons in conjugated molecules 15. Cyclic pi systems & aromaticity Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Laboratory exericise Practical (4 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 06 16. Aromaticity, aromatic and heteroaromatic compounds 17. Electro- & nucleophilic aromatic substitution 10. Intro to Coordination chemistry Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Laboratory exericise Practical (4 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 07 19. Crystal field theory for metal complexes 20. Other Geometries 21. Ligand field theory Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Laboratory exericise Practical (4 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 08 22. Ligand field theory for metal complexes 23. Thermo aspects of metal complexes 24. Kinetics of ligand substitution reactions Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 09 25. Organometallic chemistry 26. Organometallic chemistry 27. Metal-metal bonding Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 10 28. Introduction to spectroscopy * the photon 29. Electronic spectroscopy of aromatics - absorption and fluorescence 30. Electronic spectroscopy of metal complexes Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 11 31. Raman spectroscopy 32. Vibrational spectroscopy 33. Vibronic spectroscopy Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 12 34. Photophysics 35. Photophysics 36. Photophysics Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 13 37. Case study - photocatalysis 38. Case study - photocatalysis 39. Review Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5
Special topics Seminar (1 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6

Attendance and class requirements

Due to the exceptional circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, attendance requirements for this unit of study have been amended. Where online tutorials/workshops/virtual laboratories have been scheduled, students should make every effort to attend and participate at the scheduled time. Penalties will not be applied if technical issues, etc. prevent attendance at a specific online class. In that case, students should discuss the problem with the coordinator, and attend another session, if available.

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. understand and apply knowledge of bonding and spectroscopy in the context of open-ended and research-led problems.
  • LO2. Work safely and competently in a chemical laboratory.
  • LO3. communicate scientific information and laboratory findings effectively using a range of modes (written, oral, visual etc.) for a variety of audiences.
  • LO4. recognise the relevance of bonding and spectroscopy to applications beyond the discipline of chemistry
  • LO5. evaluate and interpret chemical data to resolve chemical questions and advance chemical inquiry in molecular stability and reactivity in discovery-led and research-led contexts.
  • LO6. work collaboratively and responsibly in data collection, analysis and communication.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities
GQ1 GQ2 GQ3 GQ4 GQ5 GQ6 GQ7 GQ8 GQ9

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

No changes have been made since this unit was last offered

Disclaimer

The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.