Course Title: Analytical Spectroscopy

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Analytical Spectroscopy

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 1 2007,
Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2013,
Sem 1 2014,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2018,
Sem 1 2019,
Sem 1 2020

Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Sylvia Urban

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3376

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 3.2.14

Course Coordinator Availability: By email

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

To complete this course successfully, you should have a background in university-level theoretical and practical chemistry, and have completed at least one year of study in university chemistry. You are required to have successfully completed the courses CHEM1030 Chemistry of Materials 1 (Theory and Laboratory) as well as CHEM 1031 Chemistry of Materials 2 (Theory and Laboratory) or equivalent courses or provide evidence of equivalent capabilities.

Course Description

Analytical Spectroscopy, will enable you to identify the structures of simple organic molecules using chemical tests combined with NMR spectroscopy, IR spectroscopy and Mass Spectrometry.

It also introduces you to methods of elemental analysis using atomic spectroscopy techniques.

This is a very hands-on course and the material in the lectures and your laboratory work will be closely associated.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes:

PLO-2 Scientific knowledge

  • PLO-2.1 You will have exhibited depth and breadth of chemistry knowledge by demonstrating a knowledge of, and applying the principles and concepts of chemistry

PLO-3 Inquiry, Problem Solving and Critical Thinking

  • PLO-3.1 You will be able to investigate and solve qualitative and quantitative problems in the chemical sciences, both individually and in teams, by synthesising and evaluating information from a range of sources, including traditional and emerging information technologies and methods
  • PLO-3.2 You will be able to formulate hypotheses, proposals and predictions and design and undertake experiments and projects in a safe and responsible manner

PLO-4 Communication

  • PLO-4.1 You will be able to communicate chemical knowledge by presenting information, articulate arguments and conclusions, in a variety of modes, to diverse audiences, and for a range of purposes

This is a theory and laboratory based course.  A large portion of this course is associated with Inquiry and Problem Solving (Laboratory component). On completion of the course you should be able to demonstrate:   

  1. That you can gather, synthesize, and critically evaluate information from a range of sources and then design and plan an investigation.
  2. That you can select and apply appropriate practical techniques with technical competence in laboratory-based or virtual experiments
  3. That you can collect, accurately record, organise, interpret and draw conclusions from scientific data.
  4. That you can effectively work individually, or in a small team and communicate results and argument in writing.
  5. That you understand the theory of Atomic Spectroscopy and apply this to examples.
  6. That you are able to understand the principles of NMR Spectroscopy, Mass Spectrometry and Infra-red Spectroscopy and apply this fundamental understanding to deduce the structure of some simple organic compounds.

Overview of Learning Activities

 A range of learning activities is planned for this Course. CHEM1053 consists of two distinct units (Unit 1: Organic Structural Elucidation & Intro to Mass Spectrometry Instrumentation and Unit 2: Atomic Spectrometry) and learning activities will vary with the unit. Unit 1 runs from weeks 1 - 12, while Unit 2 runs from weeks 1 - 7 (inclusive). Practical classes are spent entirely in the laboratory (5.4.3) with associated tutorials.  designed to introduce you to the software packages that will enable you to process NMR data yourself. This will be an interactive virtual structure-solving tutorial.  

Total Study Hours

Teacher guided hours: 58 hrs/semester

Learner directed hours: 62 hrs/semester

This is a theory and laboratory based course, with a combination of face-to-face lectures, in class and in the lab tutorial problem-solving sessions (supported by printed and online material available via Canvas) and a total of 7 compulsory laboratory assessments. You will be expected to undertake tutorial problems and past examination papers to assist with the development of logical thinking and problem-solving skills: this activity will guide you with the accumulation of a suitable body of knowledge in the topic area, and provide you with an indication of your understanding of the lecture material.

Overview of Learning Resources

Lecture notes and the laboratory manual will be available via Canvas. You will be able to access course information and additional learning materials through the Learning Management System (LMS) known as Canvas. Lists of relevant reference texts, resources in the library and freely accessible internet sites are provided.

Overview of Assessment

This is a theory and laboratory based course and assessment will be a combination of formal examination, class tests, laboratory reports and laboratory tests.

These will assess your ability to solve higher level problems in chemistry.

Note that:

All hurdle requirements for this course are indicated clearly in the assessment regime that follows, against the relevant assessment task(s) and all have been approved by the College Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning & Teaching).

The assessment is based on:

  1. A mid-semester test on Unit 2: Atomic Spectroscopy (20%).
  2. A laboratory mark which is made up of assessment of laboratory reports & organisation, as well as practical tests (30%).
  3. A final 2 hour exam which covers Unit 1 material only (50%).


Assessment task 1 supports CLO 5

Assessment task 2 supports CLO’s 1-4

Assessment task 3 supports CLO 6


Passing the Laboratory component is a hurdle requirement for this course. If you do not pass the Practical component, you do not pass CHEM1053.