BSc (Hons) Chemistry


Chemistry is involved in every part of our day-to-day lives – the medicines we take, the fuels we use, our food and clothing, even how we dispose of our waste.

Within this Chemistry degree, we place an emphasis on analytical chemistry and modern aspects of chemical science, to develop your ability to apply the principles of chemistry to your career pathway.

Our BSc (Hons) Chemistry course is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry for partially meeting the academic criteria for Chartered Chemist (CChem) status. This means that what you learn meets professional requirements and will make you a more attractive candidate to employers.

To enhance your skills and career potential, our Chemistry courses provide a depth of practical experience that employers find highly attractive. This course is also available through Network75, a combined work and study route. Follow @USW_Chem_PharmS on Twitter.

2021/22 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

[Update excludes online-only courses].

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to further change through the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
F100 Full-time 3 Years September Glyntaff A

Our Chemistry degree places an emphasis on analytical chemistry and modern aspects of chemical science to develop your ability to think logically and apply the principles of chemistry to any area.

As well as traditional aspects of physical, inorganic, analytical and organic chemistry, you will also study biological chemistry, environmental chemistry, and organometallic chemistry. During the third year of your Chemistry course, you can undertake a practical research project of your choice, under the supervision of an academic member of staff.

Year One: Chemistry Degree

  • Biological Chemistry
  • Your Skills, Your Future
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Fundamental Inorganic Chemistry

Year Two: Chemistry Degree

  • Heterocyclic Chemistry and an Introduction to Drug Design
  • Spectroscopy
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Physical Chemistry 2
  • Synthetic Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry 2

Year Three: Chemistry Degree

  • Chemistry Project
  • Advanced Analytical Chemistry
  • Advanced Physical Chemistry
  • Advanced Organic Chemistry
  • Advanced Inorganic Chemistry


The Chemistry programme is taught by highly experienced staff through lectures, tutorials and practical work. A typical week involves six lectures, ten to twelve hours of practical work, plus some small group tutorials. Self directed study plays a part in all modules and you will be supported by using the University’s virtual learning environment.

The majority of chemistry research at USW is concerned with the development and application of new catalytic entities, particularly within the field of renewable energy and sustainable manufacturing processes.


You will complete coursework as you progress, and sit exams at the end of each academic year. Assessments include practical reports, essays, presentations and exams.


The BSc (Hons) Chemistry course is accredited by The Royal Society of Chemistry.


Chemistry students have the option of completing a summer placement at a local pharmaceutical company.



Our chemistry facilities are on a par with those found in industry. Students make full use of the laboratories during their studies and gain hands-on experience using the extensive chemical equipment. We have dedicated organic, inorganic and physical chemistry laboratories, as well as several instrumentation laboratories. 

Featured Lecturer:
Dr Christian Laycock

Dr Christian Laycock

Dr Christian Laycock specialises in electrochemistry and heterogeneous catalysis. He is a member of the Chemistry Research group and of the Sustainable Environment Research Centre. His research interests focus on the application of solid oxide fuel cell technology to the utilisation and disposal of renewable and industrial waste gas feedstocks.

He has expertise in the real-time analysis of gas streams using online mass spectrometry, in particular to observe fuel processing, catalysis, and the effects of fuel variability and contaminants. He is also involved in research activities concerned with hybrid flow battery technology and their application to recovery of scrap metals. In addition, Christian has expertise in the application of alkali silicates to treat industrial waste and by-product streams.


  • Dr Natasha Galea, Chemistry course leader
  • Dr Suzanna Kean
  • Dr Paul Jones
  • Dr Ryszard Babecki
  • James Cruwys
  • Professor Antony Davies
  • Dr Andrew Graham
  • Dr Rehana Karim
  • Dr Christian Laycock
  • Dr Gareth Owen
  • Richard Price
  • Dr Peter Meidziak

 See our current research.

The entry criteria below shows the qualification range within which the University will make offers. Most offers we make are at the top of the range, but we take all aspects of an application into consideration and applicants receive a personalised offer. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed here may also be acceptable.

Typical A-Level Offer

BCC - CDD to include Chemistry and normally one other Science, but to exclude General Studies (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical Welsh BACC Offer

Pass the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Diploma with Grade C/D in the Skills Challenge Certificate and BC - CD at A Level to include Chemistry and normally one other Science, but to exclude General Studies. (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical Science Requirements

Applicants taking Science A levels in England will need to pass the practical element alongside achieving the requested grade(s)

Typical BTEC Offer

BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction Merit Merit - Merit Merit Pass in a relevant subject which must include Chemistry modules (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical IB Offer

Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum score of 29 overall including a score of 5 in Chemistry and one other Science subject at Higher Level. You will also need to obtain a score of 5 or above in English at standard level.


Typical Access to HE Offer

Pass an Access to HE Diploma in Science and obtain a minimum of 80 UCAS tariff points

Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances. 

International Entry Requirements

We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.

English Requirements

In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.

However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

Find out how to pay your tuition fees in full or by payment plan.

This course is eligible under the Enhanced Learning Credits scheme for Ex-Armed Forces personnel.

International Scholarships are available for self-funding international students.

August 2022 - July 2023 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
Students are encouraged to equip themselves with a suitable cotton laboratory coat, suitable for working in a chemical laboratory, and a pair of personal protective laboratory goggles, althouth the School does provide these items. Students who are successful in securing an industry-based project may, in a small number of cases, be required to purchase additional personal protective equipment as specified by the specific organisation or company.
Placement *
Students who successfully secure a placement in industry to complete their project would be expected to pay their own travel costs to and from the venue during the period of placement. The cost of this will of course vary and some students have also paid for accommodation close to their place of work for the duration of their placement.

UK and EU students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year 1 of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly

International students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU. 

Admissions statement

Chemists are capable of successful careers in a wide range of scientific, business and commercial areas, including food science, pharmaceutical research or development, and environmental monitoring. Graduates of our Chemistry degree have gained work in public or commercial laboratories, forensic science services and education, while many continue to postgraduate research. The skills you gain from a degree in chemistry are valued in other professions, for example, to train for careers in patent law or accountancy.

Graduates can also progress to a PhD or research degree.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW Chemistry student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.