Chemistry with Biophysical Chemistry

BSc (Hons) (NFQ Level 8)

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Curricular information is subject to change.

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Why is this course for me?

Biophysical Chemistry combines the study of chemistry with the molecular principles of the functioning of life and their applications in modern technologies, from the design of a new generation of smart medicines to green manufacturing. The best chemical technologies of our world are utilised in biological systems, where thousands of chemical transformations take place in a well-controlled, environmentally friendly manner.

These transformations occur in biological cells, which represent sophisticated chemical manufacturing plants filled with a broad range of nano devices. Students graduating with this degree will acquire knowledge of advanced chemistry, and of molecular principles of organisation and functioning of living matter. They will also acquire skills in the applications of these principles in biomedical, biotechnological, pharmaceutical, food and other related industries.

Course Pathways
What Will I Study

Chemistry with Biophysical Chemistry is one of the degree subjects available through the Chemistry stream in the common entry Science course.

Students study similar modules for all degree subjects in the Chemistry stream in first year and will study modules for a minimum of two degree subjects in second year. At the end of second year, students choose their degree major. Assuming students meet all the academic requirements in first and second year, students are guaranteed a degree subject from the stream they are studying in second year. We do our best to ensure that students go on to study their top degree subject choice. As we offer plenty of degree subjects in each stream, students have a number of similar degree subjects to choose from as their degree major. This is a sample set of modules that a Chemistry with Biophysical Chemistry student could study each year in UCD.

First Year

  • Scientific Enquiry
  • Basis of Organic & Biological Chemistry
  • Basis of Inorganic Chemistry
  • The Molecular World
  • Cell Biology & Genetics
  • Linear Algebra for Science
  • Calculus for Science
  • Optional Science Modules
  • Elective Module

Second Year

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Basis of Inorganic Chemistry
  • Functioning of Biomolecules
  • + modules for 1 other Science Subject
  • Elective Modules

Third Year

  • Quantum Mechanics
  • Instrumental Analysis
  • Carbonyl Chemistry & Synthesis
  • Structure Determination & Aromatic Heterocyclic Chemistry
  • Mechanism & Stereochemistry
  • Symmetry & Computational Chemistry
  • Organometallic & Solid State Chemistry
  • Soft Matter & Interfacial Chemistry
  • Chemical Thermodynamics & Physical Transformations
  • Advanced Transition Metal Chemistry
  • Optional Modules in Biomolecular, Organic & Inorganic Chemistry
  • Elective Modules

Fourth Year

  • Research Project
  • Electrochemistry
  • Nanomaterials Chemistry
  • Special Topics in Biophysical Chemistry
  • Advanced Topics in Physical Chemistry
  • Optional Modules in Biomolecular, Organic & Inorganic Chemistry

Timetables & Assessment

Each student will have their own timetable based on their individual module selection. This is a full time course and classes may include lectures, practicals and tutorials, depending on the subjects. Students will also be expected to study independently (autonomous student learning). Assessment varies with each module but may comprise continuous assessment of practicals, written exams and online learning activities.

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Career & Graduate Study Opportunities

The interdisciplinary aspect of this degree and the acquired combination of theoretical and practical skills provide broad opportunities for employment in the area of advanced chemical and biomolecular technologies, including:

  • Complex biomolecular formulations
  • Bio-nanotechnology
  • Bioprocessing
  • Bioengineering

Biophysical Chemistry graduates will be able to find employment in biotechnological, chemical, pharmaceutical, biomedical, food, personal care and other industries, as well as academic research worldwide. Graduates can also pursue a range of MSc or PhD opportunities in Ireland or abroad.

Other Entry Routes

“I entered Science studying equal parts Biology and Chemistry until I decided to specialise in Chemistry with Biophysical Chemistry. This subject addresses the need for chemists, in research and in industry, who have a proper understanding of biological principles as well as physics – to best tackle some of the biggest issues in biomedicine, biotechnology, and the environment. I have been on the French Society and Cumann Gaelach committees, acted in and directed plays with UCD Dramsoc, and been a Peer Mentor for Science. I now work as a Research & Development Chemist for Henkel in Dublin, and consider my ‘global’ and language education at UCD the most attractive attributes to global companies.”

Bronagh McMullan, Graduate

Contact Information

Associate Professor Vitaly Buckin
UCD School of Chemistry
Belfield, Dublin 4


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