CHEM10050 Basis of Organic and Biological Chemistry

Academic Year 2023/2024

The module is an introduction to organic chemistry, the chemistry of carbon compounds. It is a core module for students planning to pursue programmes in Biology or Chemistry, and is also suitable as an elective for students, with a good background in chemistry at second level, wishing to learn more about the chemistry of living things.
It covers the common organic molecules (alkenes, alcohols, amines, carbonyls etc.) and emphasises their recognition, naming, reactions and relevance to everyday life and health. Specific topics include 3D aspects of chemistry, what exactly happens in a chemical reaction and how it is done in practice. A significant proportion of the module is devoted to the larger molecules of life (proteins, carbohydrates, fats) and shows how these can be understood in terms of simpler molecules.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this module students should be able to:
Understand the structures of organic molecules and recognize and name examples of them.
Predict the properties and reactions of a molecule from its structure.
Discuss the reactions of common organic compounds.
Design the synthesis of a simple molecule from available starting materials.
Understand the molecular basis of life.
Safely perform a simple chemical synthesis in the laboratory.
Make a presentation using PowerPoint and chemical structure drawing software.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours






Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Lectures, including in-class activities such as problem solving and small-group discussions.
Problem solving in interactive tutorials.
Independent learning in advance of lectures and, particularly, laboratory classes
(it should be noted that the laboratory component is must-pass).
Independent learning in teams in the presentation component.
Note that the T&L activities may need to be modified in light of the evolution of the COVID pandemic. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Requirements:

CHEM00010 (Introductory Chemistry) or Grade H5 or above in Leaving Certificate Chemistry Higher Level, or Grade O1 in Leaving Certificate Chemistry Ordinary Level, or equivalent.

Learning Recommendations:

For students with a Grade H5 or above in Leaving Certificate Chemistry Higher Level, or Grade O1 in Leaving Certificate Chemistry Ordinary Level, or equivalent, CHEM10040 (The Molecular World) would be advantageous prior learning but not required.
CHEM20080 (Basis of Physical Chemistry) or CHEM20100 (Basis of Inorganic Chemistry) are recommended parallel learning.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
BIOC00010 - Chemistry-Biochemistry, CHEM10010 - Intro to Biomolecules, CHEM10090 - Organic Chemistry (Med), CHEM20060 - Organic Chemistry - Engineers

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade In Module Component Repeat Offered
Assignment: Homework assignments and in-class tests at end of each tutorial Varies over the Trimester n/a Standard conversion grade scale 40% No


Lab Report: Laboratory assessment including laboratory practice, report, data and sample quality. Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded Yes


Multiple Choice Questionnaire: Online examination consisting of multiple choice and related question formats, asessing the theoretical material. 2 hour End of Trimester Exam n/a Standard conversion grade scale 40% No


Presentation: Presentation on chemical properties of a pharmaceutical drug. Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No



Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Autumn Yes - 2 Hour
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Feedback on laboratory reports will be provided when the report is returned at the start of the next laboratory class. Feedback on tutorial assignments will be provided in the tutorials. Group feedback will be provided after the presentations.

Name Role
Professor Declan Gilheany Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Professor Patrick Guiry Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Mr Fahad Ali Alkhathami Tutor
Zoe Beato Tutor
Ms Arlene Bonner Tutor
Gawain Boyce Tutor
Ronán Brennan Tutor
Mr Liam Casey Tutor
Mr Haode Chen Tutor
Mr Eoghan Courtney Tutor
Mr Davin Cronly Tutor
Camilla Di Girolamo Tutor
Niamh Disney Tutor
Ms Aoibhinn Downes Tutor
Celine Erkey Tutor
Adarsha H J Gowda Tutor
Philip Jamieson Tutor
Mr Liam Jowett Tutor
Matthew Kiernan Tutor
Ms Aoife Martin Tutor
Ashwini Mishra Tutor
Ms Dairine Morgan Tutor
Adam O'Connell Tutor
Aoibheann O'Connor Tutor
Ms Rachel Ann O'Sullivan Tutor
Smit Patel Tutor
Thomas Rabbitte Tutor
Mrs Sarah Smoni Varghese Tutor