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Unit outline_

CHNG1108: Introduction to Chemical Engineering

Semester 1, 2023 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

This unit will introduce students to the profession of chemical engineering. It will give students an appreciation of the variety of the chemical and process industries, their history, the economic importance and the scale of their operations both in Australia and globally. The unit will make use of virtual process plants and industrial leaders as guest speakers.

Unit details and rules

Academic unit Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Credit points 6
ENGG1800 or CIVL1900 or MECH1560 or AERO1560 or AMME1960 or BMET1960 or MTRX1701 or ENGG1960 or ELEC1004 or ELEC1005
Assumed knowledge

HSC Mathematics and Chemistry

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Gustavo Fimbres Weihs,
Lecturer(s) Gustavo Fimbres Weihs,
Anne Mai-Prochnow,
Md Arifur Rahim,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Tutorial quiz Quiz 1
Quiz on chemical engineering principles, unit measurements, significant fig
20% Week 05 1 hour
Outcomes assessed: LO6 LO4 LO1
Tutorial quiz Quiz 2
Quiz on ideal gases and process flow
20% Week 07 1 hour
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO6
Assignment group assignment Lab report fermentation
Report detailing the results of the lab project
15% Week 09 N/A
Outcomes assessed: LO6 LO3 LO2
Assignment group assignment Lab report batteries
Report detailing results from the battery lab exercise
15% Week 11 N/A
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO6 LO3
Presentation group assignment Interview an Engineer
Presentation video of interview with Engineer, to be submitted online
15% Week 12 10 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO3 LO4
Assignment Essay - What are chemical engineers and what is their contribution to society? Why did you choose to study chemical engineering?
What are chemical engineers?
15% Week 13
Due date: 26 May 2023 at 23:59
3 pages of written text
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO4 LO5
group assignment = group assignment ?

Assessment summary

All group assessments require you to review your performance and that of your team members using SPARKPLUS. Individual marks for group assessments will be adjusted based on these reviews.

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

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


High distinction

85 - 100



75 - 84



65 - 74



50 - 64



0 - 49

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

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:

Submission deadline is 23:59 on the due date. Late penalty for any online assessment is 5% per business day. It is a cap based penalty: 1 day late, maximum attainable mark is 95%. 3 days late, maximum attainable mark is 85%. 5 days (1 week) late, maximum attainable mark is 75%. Failure to submit any assessment will award zero marks, unless special consideration is granted.

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 Lecture: Welcome and course introduction, history of chemical engineering Tutorial: Team building exercise - tutors Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 02 Lecture: Units and measurements, significant figures Tutorial: Demonstrations/calculations of unit measurement; Essay writing skills Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO6
Week 03 Lecture: Ideal and Non-ideal Gases Tutorial: Calculations for ideal gas - lab demonstrations Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO3 LO6
Week 04 Lecture: Compositional streams and process flow sheets Lab: Demonstrations for processes and streams Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO5 LO6
Week 05 Lecture: Safety in Chemical Engineering Tutorial: Water plant tour (excursion) Field trip (3 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 06 Lecture: Ethics in Engineering Tutorial: Interview Engineer planning, Report writing skills Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO4
Week 07 Lecture: Research overview (Microbes and Biofilms) Tutorial: Interview an Engineer / Report writing Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO5 LO6
Week 08 Lecture: Bioremediation/Bioreactors - Preparation for fermentation lab work Lab: Bio-fermentation Science laboratory (3 hr) LO1 LO3 LO6
Week 09 Lecture: Research overview (Rahim) Tutorial: N/A (Anzac Day) Lecture (1 hr) LO4
Week 10 Lecture: Electro-chemistry/batteries introduction Lab: electrochemistry/batteries Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO6
Week 11 Lecture: Research overview (Simulation & Economics) - Gustavo Tutorial: Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 12 Lecture: What to expect to learn, Y1-Y4 - John Kavanagh Tutorial: Quiz (tutors) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO4 LO6
Week 13 Lecture: Student presentations about interviews Tutorial: Reflection - Has your view of chemical engineering changed? Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO3 LO4

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. recognise the engineering design process
  • LO2. write and critique short engineering reports
  • LO3. work effectively in small groups
  • LO4. recognise the roles and potential career paths of chemical engineers
  • LO5. recognise the size and scope of the process industries.
  • LO6. understand the principles of chemical engineering

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

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

This unit has been redesigned to be more interactive, include more technical content and practical laboratory sessions


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.