Course Information Undergraduate prospectus

Further Inorganic Chemistry

Course summary

Course code: CHEM1033
Level: 5
Credits: 15
School: Engineering and Science
Department: Pharm, Chemical and Envi Science
Course Coordinator(s): Samantha Booth


Pre and co requisites

Student to have taken the Level 4 Inorganic Chemistry course or equivalent


This course develops the content of the Level 4 course Inorganic Chemistry. It covers two areas of inorganic chemistry. In the first, it develops models of metallic and ionic structures. In the second, it covers transition metal complexes, models of bonding in complexes, the redox chemistry of transition metal compounds and the application of concepts involving complexation and redox chemistry to mechanisms for catalysis. The course as a whole therefore places inorganic chemistry within a wider context and applies concepts met in other courses.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course a student will be able to:

Learning Outcome
1 Apply extended knowledge of group 13 -18 chemistry for groups
2 Apply models to explain structures of crystalline materials
3 Investigate and classify transition metal co-ordination complexes
4 Apply theoretical models to explain the behaviour of transition metal co-ordination complexes
5 Predict, investigate and evaluate the redox and catalytic behaviour of transition metal compounds
6 Practical skills and ability to report laboratory activities/analyse laboratory acquired data

Indicative content

1. Properties of elements and their compounds

p block, group 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18,: physical and chemical properties of elements and their compounds with hydrogen, oxygen and halogens (where appropriate), interpretation of trends in terms of electronic structure and bonding, application of oxidation states and standard electrode potentials, anomalous behaviour of first member of each group and its explanation in terms of atomic structure, effect of d orbitals on chemistry of groups and important polymers formed.

2. Crystalline materials

Metallic crystal structures: body centred cubic, face centred cubic and hexagonal close packed structures, close packed planes and close packed directions, relationship between metallic radius and lattice parameter for fcc and bcc structures.
Ionic crystal structures: MX and MX2 structures, limiting radius ratios for NaCl and CsCl structures, radius ratio, lattice enthalpy and most stable structure, lattice enthalpy from experimental data using the Born Haber cycle, factors affecting lattice enthalpies for halides and chlorides of groups 1 and 2.
Theoretical model for ionic crystal lattice: forces of attraction and repulsion between point charges, potential energy of a simple point charge system, lattice structure and Madelung constants , the Born equation,, lattice enthalpy from theoretical data using the Born equation.

3. Transition metal co-ordination complexes

Co-ordination complexes: ligands (monodentate and polydentate), formation of co-ordinate bonds, formulae, shapes of complexes (linear, square plane, tetrahedral, octahedral), rules of nomenclature, absorption spectra.
Stability of complexes: ligand exchange, co-ordination equilibria, stability constants, stepwise formation constants, trends in formation constants, chelate effect, steric effects.
Preparation of complexes: oxidation, reduction, ligand displacement, decomposition.

4. Models for transition co-ordination complexes

Crystal field model: shapes and orientations of d orbitals, crystal field splitting effects in
octahedral and tetrahedral complexes, crystal field splitting parameter, spectrochemical series, effect of metal ion on crystal field splitting parameter, stabilisation energy, high and low spin configurations, magnetic properties (diamagnetic and paramagnetic) complexes, absorption spectra.
Ligand field model: Shortcomings of crystal field model, ligand field theory, combination of metal and ligand orbitals to give molecular orbitals, energy level diagrams for simple systems ( - bonds only), crystal field theory as a special case of ligand field theory.

5. Redox chemistry of transition metal compounds

The compounds of: titanium, vanadium, chromium, manganese, iron, cobalt, copper: oxidation states of the 3d transition metals, trends in oxidation state, ionic, covalent and intermediate bonding, acidic, amphoteric and basic oxides, standard electrode potentials and redox potentials, factors affecting stabilities of oxidation states, disproportionations, effect of complexing on stability of oxidation states.

Teaching and learning activity

The course will be delivered mainly through lectures and tutorials. A series of practical exercises will illustrate the principles taught in lectures (BSc/MChem students only). The underlying principles will be explained in the lectures, and the tutorials will establish the understanding of these principles and their application. Some of the topics will be supported by interactive computer learning exercises. Independent reading by students will be encouraged.


Methods of SUMMATIVE Assessment: Laboratory Coursework.
Outcome(s) assessed by summative assessment (Please use the numbers above to refer to these): 1-6.
Grading Mode: Numeric.
Weighting % 40%
Pass Mark 40
Word Length: Max 2000
Outline Details: A set of reports that require the analysis and work up of laboratory acquired data.

Methods of SUMMATIVE Assessment: Examnation.
Outcome(s) assessed by summative assessment (Please use the numbers above to refer to these): 1-5
Grading Mode: Numeric
Weighting % 60%
Pass Mark 40
Word Length n/a
Outline Details: 2 Hour Paper.

Nature of FORMATIVE assessment supporting student learning: Formative assessment will be in the form of short answer questions or MCQs.