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CHY2301 : Inorganic Chemistry

  • Offered for Year: 2019/20
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Keith Izod
  • Lecturer: Dr Lee Higham, Dr Simon Doherty, Professor Andrew Houlton, Professor Andrew Benniston
  • Practical Supervisor: Dr Johan Eriksson
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0


To build on Stage 1 course material and provide the factual basis for an understanding of the electronic and structural properties and reactivities of the main-group elements and the second- and third-row transition elements; to introduce the basic principles of organometallic chemistry; to develop experimental techniques through practical work. Redox Reactions will give students an understanding of the factors controlling the rate of electron transfer between metal sites and to be able to distinguish between inner- and outer-sphere electron transfer mechanisms. Students will be able to predict the mechanisms and products of certain redox reactions and appreciate the problems associated with non-complementary electron transfer mechanisms.

Outline Of Syllabus

Semester 1 (LJH)
CFSE and MO Theory
Lecture 1-2 Recap and Crystal Field Theory – Octahedral Complexes
Lecture 3 Other Geometries: Tetrahedral, Tetragonal and Square Planar
Selection Rules for d-d transitions
Lecture 4 Molecular Orbital Theory – Covalent Bonding
Lecture 5 Effect of pi-bases and pi-acids on Energy Level Diagrams
Lecture 6 Electron Counting
Lecture 7 The Trans Effect: Substitution of Square-Planar Complexes
Ligands: Bonding Models
Lecture 8 The Carbonyl Ligand – Bonding Model
Lectures 9 Metal Carbonyls: Structure and Characterisation
Lecture 10 Isoelectronic Ligands to CO: CN-,N2, NO+
Lecture 11 Phosphines as Ligands – Bonding Model
Lecture 12 Alkenes as Ligands – Bonding Model
Comparative TM Chemistry
Lecture 13 The Lanthanide Contraction
Differences in Bonding of Groups 3 and 4
Lecture 14 Group 5: M-M Bonding and Clusters
Lectures 15-16 Group 6: M-M Bonding and Clusters
Multiple Oxidation States
Lectures 17-18 Group 7: M-M Bonding and Clusters
      Multiple Oxidation States
Lecture 19 Group 8: MO4 as Oxidants
Lecture 20 Group 9: Square Planar to Octahedral Geometries - Catalysis
Lecture 21 Group 10: Recap of the Trans Effect and Catalysis
Lecture 22 Revision

Semester 2.
Inorganic Mechanisms (ACB)
Lecture 1 – ligand substitution and Parameters
Lecture 2 – Inert & Labile Classification and Crystal Field Activation
Lecture 3 – Associative and Dissociative Mechanisms
Lecture 4 – Substitution: Octahedral Complexes
Lecture 5 – Substitution: Square Planar Complexes Lecture
Lecture 6 – Electron Transfer-Inner Sphere and Outer Sphere
Lecture 7 - Revision

Introduction to Main Group Chemistry (KJI)
Lecture 1 – review of trends down groups and across periods
Lecture 2 – further trends
Lecture 3 – Group 1
Lecture 4 – Group 2
Lectures 5-6 – Group 13
Lectures 7-8 – Group 14
Lectures 9-10 – Group 15
hydrides, oxides, oxoacids
Lectures 11 – Group 16
Lectures 12 – revision

Laboratory Course
Dr J Eriksson

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion52:0010:00Writing practical reports
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion200:5016:40Revision for end of semester 2 examination
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion220:5018:20Revision for end of semester 1 examination
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:301:30End of semester 2 examination
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:301:30End of semester 1 examination
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture421:0042:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical59:0045:005x9h Practical sessions take place over 5 weeks
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching81:008:00Tutorial/Feedback sessions
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study157:0057:00Background reading and practice past paper examination questions
Jointly Taught With
Code Title
CHY8831Main Group and Transition Metal Chemistry
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Students acquire knowledge and understanding through lectures, tutorials and practical work. Tutorials facilitate individual and group participation in conceptual analysis and problem solving. Students learn safe working practices and good experimental techniques for the manipulation of air-stable and air-sensitive compounds in the practical classes; formative feedback is used to enable progressive development of these skills. In the laboratory classes, students learn to work effectively with a partner, to plan and organise their work, to record their results and to write up experiment reports.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination901A35N/A
Written Examination902A35N/A
Exam Pairings
Module Code Module Title Semester Comment
CHY8831Main Group and Transition Metal Chemistry1N/A
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Practical/lab report1M30composed of several individual laboratory reports as specified in the practical course handbook
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The examinations will assess the students’ knowledge, understanding and application of the principles of organic chemistry.

The practical course will examine their understanding of the fundamental scientific principles, how these relate to experiment, and how successfully the student has acquired the necessary skills in performing and recording practical work.

Reading Lists