CHEM 4090A - Honours Chemistry Project (Two Year) Continuing
North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2021
General Course Information
Course Code CHEM 4090A Course Honours Chemistry Project (Two Year) Continuing Coordinating Unit School of Physical Sciences Term Semester 1 Level Undergraduate Location/s North Terrace Campus Contact By supervision Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N Incompatible CHEM 4060A, CHEM 4060B, CHEM 4070A, CHEM 4070B Restrictions Available only to students admitted to the relevant Honours program Course Description Students will undertake a research project under the supervision of an academic in the Department of Chemistry that will provide advanced knowledge and skills for professional or highly skilled work and/or further learning. The intention is that students will collect and present novel scientific data of a quality that could be published in the open literature however, students will not be penalised if their research project does not produce conclusive results.
Course Coordinator: Professor Greg Metha
The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.
Course Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
1 demonstrate an understanding of the close relationship between scientific research and the development of new knowledge in a global context; 2 demonstrate that current scientific knowledge is both contestable and testable by further enquiry; 3 apply the concepts and theories of a range of advanced topics in chemistry to research in a particular area; 4 analyse critically, evaluate and transform research findings to complete a range of activities; 5 present information, articulate arguments and conclusions, in a variety of modes, to audiences in their field of research; 6 comply with regulatory frameworks (including HSW) and practising professional ethics relevant to the chemistry field; 7 undertake independent supervised research in a chemistry field and demonstrate autonomy, well-developed judgement, adaptability and responsibility as a practitioner or learner 8 demonstrate and articulate personal attributes in preparation for employment
University Graduate Attributes
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:
University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s) Deep discipline knowledge
- informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
- acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
- accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
1-3 Critical thinking and problem solving
- steeped in research methods and rigor
- based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
- demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
3,4 Teamwork and communication skills
- developed from, with, and via the SGDE
- honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
- encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
5,8 Career and leadership readiness
- technology savvy
- professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
- forward thinking and well informed
- tested and validated by work based experiences
6-8 Intercultural and ethical competency
- adept at operating in other cultures
- comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
- able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
- demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
1,6 Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
- a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
- open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
- able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
Learning & Teaching Activities
Learning & Teaching ModesThe Honours Chemistry project involves placement in the laboratory of a member of the Chemistry academic staff (cross disciplinary projects involving Chemistry academics and others outside Chemistry may be approved at the discretion of the Chemistry Honours coordinator who will consult with the Department). Students will be allocated to a particular research group by the Honours coordinator according to the preference of the student and the availability of Supervisors. Undergraduate performance will be taken into account during the allocation process where the availability of a particular supervisor is limited.
Each student will devise a single research project in Chemistry, in consultation with their allocated Supervisor, that will allow them to develop their research skills in a particular area beyond the level achieved in their Chemistry Major. The placements will be full-time in one laboratory between the start of April and the end of October, and each student will be mentored by their Supervisor as well as other members of that research group.
Students will develop their informal written and oral scientific communication skills through meetings with their Supervisor and participation in research group meetings, and formal communication skills will be developed by presentation of a research seminar and production of a research project report (thesis).
Each student will be allocated a “second reader” by the Honours coordinator; this will be a member of the Chemistry academic staff who does not work directly in the same field of research but who will help the student to develop the ability to communicate their research outcomes to a broader audience.
A student will receive informal feedback regarding scientific writing from their Supervisor as they draft their thesis. A formal requirement for the submission of an interim report at the start of June, covering the background and motivation for each research project, will be enforced. Both the Supervisor and the second reader will provide feedback on the interim report. Attendance at Department research seminars will allow students to place their research projects in a wider context in the field and develop perspective about the importance of their work.
The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.Students undertaking an Honours research project in Chemistry should expect to spend, on average, 40 hours per week on the studies required. This includes time at the bench, reading and literature surveys, research group meetings, preparation of seminar and thesis, as well as attendance at the Chemistry seminar program. Students should note that significant variations in day-to-day workload requirements will occur depending on the nature of the research project.
Learning Activities SummaryStudents will undertake an independent research project under the supervision and guidance of a member of the academic staff in the Department of Chemistry. This will develop the research capabilities of the student to the point where they would be considered suitable for entry into a PhD program at an Australian or international University.
Specific Course RequirementsStudents will be required to attend all Chemistry and special research seminars as defined by the Honours Coordinator (1-2 hr/wk). Students are also required to attend a library resources training session as well as equipment specific training sessions relevant to their research project as identified by their Supervisor (e.g. NMR training).
The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:
- Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
- Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
- Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
- Assessment must maintain academic standards.
Assessment Task Task Type Due Weighting Learning Outcome Interim report Formative
Refer to dates as advised on MyUni
0% 1 Research report
Summative Refer to dates as advised on MyUni 70% 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 Oral examination Summative Refer to dates as advised on MyUni 20% 5,7,8 Research seminar Summative Refer to dates as advised on MyUni 10% 1,5,8
Assessment Related Requirements
Assessment Item with
Hurdle or compulsory component
% needed to meet
hurdle or requirement to meet
assessment available if student
If additional assessment is available, explain
50% Yes Revision of thesis
Assessment DetailFor the research project, the student is expected to:
- prepare an Honours report, which describes what was done in the research project (70% of CHEM4082A/B mark),
- present a seminar on the research carried out (10% of CHEM4082A/B mark), and
- undergo an oral examination (20% of CHEM4082A/B mark).
Further information will be published in the Chemistry Honours Course Handbook available on MyUni.
If an extension is not applied for, or not granted then a penalty for late submission will apply. A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment for each calendar day that the assignment is late (i.e. weekends count as 2 days), up to a maximum of 50% of the available marks will be applied. This means that a thesis that is 5 days late or more without an approved extension can only receive a maximum of 50% of the marks available.
Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:
NOG (No Grade Associated) Grade Description CN Continuing
Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.
Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.
Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.
The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.
SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.
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