All materials and living things consist of atoms that are linked together in many different ways in molecules. Chemistry is a study of these molecules, how they form and react. Life, metabolism, pharmaceuticals, forensic analysis and the development of new energy supplies, computer chips and medical devices: none of these can be fully developed or understood without chemistry.
Information on all our courses including pathways, internships and careers information is available in the UCD Science Undergraduate Courses Entry 2024 Brochure (PDF).
For more information regarding this course, please click School of Chemistry
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. For more information on choosing a degree subject at the end of Second Year, visit the Chemistry Sciences stream page.
This is a sample set of modules that a Chemistry student could study each year in UCD.
Scientific Enquiry • Basis of Organic & Biological Chemistry • Basis of Inorganic Chemistry • The Molecular World • Linear Algebra for Science • Calculus for Science • Optional Science Modules • Elective Module
Organic Chemistry • Basis of Physical Chemistry • Basis of Inorganic Chemistry • Physical Chemistry • + modules for 1 other Science Subject • Elective Modules
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 • Elective Modules
Research Project • Methods in Organic Synthesis • Advanced Inorganic Chemistry • Electrochemistry • Reactivity & Change • Advanced Topics in Physical Chemistry • Nanochemistry • Modern Methods & Catalysis
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.
The pharmaceutical industry is one of the largest in Ireland, and UCD Chemistry graduates work in a variety of roles. This includes analytical roles in laboratories on the testing and analysis of active pharmaceutical ingredients, medicines, and medical devices. Some graduates pursue research chemist roles in laboratories in research and development. Management and supervisory roles are also an option in regulatory affairs, production and validation. The semiconductor, medical device and energy industries also hire a significant number of materials chemists, and graduates would be involved in semiconductor processing, effluent and raw materials monitoring, and air and water quality measurements.
Chemistry graduates also pursue PhDs in Ireland or abroad in areas as diverse as total synthesis of natural products, biological aspects of nanoscience, novel material synthesis, energy generation, synthetic organic chemistry, methodology development and polymer chemistry.
Students have spent time studying in Sweden, Canada and the USA at University of Lund, University of Virginia, McGill University, University of British Columbia, University of Colorado at Boulder and Villanova University.
"I am fascinated by the world around me, from the fundamental laws of our universe to the mechanisms of life itself. I have found Chemistry in UCD to be a place where my own curiosities and my passion to make a difference have been nurtured and developed. The lecturers are all kind, helpful and supportive, and their passion for their work is something I continue to find inspiring. Through UCD I was lucky enough to be awarded a scholarship to study for a term in the US, where I made many friends and grew as a chemist, and as a person. The UCD community is an incredible environment and there is a society or club for everyone."
Liam Jowett, Graduate