Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 222222
Loughborough University

Programme Specifications

Programme Specification

BSc/MSci Natural Sciences (2019 entry)

Academic Year: 2019/20

This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if full advantage is taken of the learning opportunities that are provided.

This specification applies to delivery of the programme in the Academic Year indicated above. Prospective students reviewing this information for a later year of study should be aware that these details are subject to change as outlined in our Terms and Conditions of Study.

This specification should be read in conjunction with:

  • Summary
  • Aims
  • Learning outcomes
  • Structure
  • Progression & weighting

Programme summary

Awarding body/institution Loughborough University
Teaching institution (if different)
Owning school/department Department of Chemistry
Details of accreditation by a professional/statutory body
Final award BSc (Hons)/BSc (Hons) + DPS or DIS or DIntS; MSci (Hons)/MSci (Hons) + DPS or DIS or DIntS;
Programme title Natural Sciences
Programme code CMUB09; CMUM19
Length of programme BSc 3 years; BSc with DPS/DIntS/DIS 4 years; MSci 4 years; MSci with DPS/DIntS/DIS 5 years
UCAS code BSc GFC0; BSc with DPS/DIntS/DIS CFG0; MSci CGF0; MSci with DPS/DIntS/DIS FCG0
Admissions criteria

http://www.lboro.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/courses/natural-sciences/

Date at which the programme specification was published Wed, 24 Jul 2019 11:37:58 BST

1. Programme Aims

 Natural Sciences is a broad based degree introducing students to multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary working to tackle problems in the physical sciences. The programme has option pathways which develop fundamental knowledge and applied skills within Chemistry, Bioscience, Mathematics, Physics, Geography and Materials Science, with increasing specialisation occurring throughout the duration of the programme.

Programme aims are:

 

  • To develop students’ understanding and skills within the natural sciences and their capability to work in a multidisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary environment. 
  • To cultivate students’ interest in interdisciplinary science, within a caring and intellectually stimulating environment. 
  • To develop students’ pathway relevant practical skills, application of these skills to address a problem, and their critical awareness of practical techniques. 
  • To develop students’ intellectual skills to independently research and synthesise scientific information, to apply their knowledge to develop arguments and to critically evaluate material, in order to equip graduates with the skills necessary to update their knowledge and understanding over a future career. 
  • To develop students' research skills and facilitate engagement with emerging research to further their depth of understanding of scientific processes and develop their appreciation of the provisional nature of scientific knowledge. 
  • To enable students to demonstrate an understanding of the importance of science in an industrial, economic, environmental, social and ethical context. 

 

Additional Aims in the final year of MSci: 

  • To foster in students a systematic understanding of knowledge, a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights and a critical thinking capability at the forefront of interdisciplinary research. 
  • To equip students with a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to their own research or advanced scholarship. 
  • To develop students’ ability to show originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and interpret knowledge.

2. Relevant subject benchmark statements and other external reference points used to inform programme outcomes:

The Framework for Higher Education Qualifications

Society of Natural Sciences Benchmarking (being established and currently under development)

3. Programme Learning Outcomes

3.1 Knowledge and Understanding

On successful completion of this programme, students will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding in the following areas: 

K1        Key subject-specific terminology, nomenclature, conventions and units;

K2        The fundamental experimental techniques and theoretical methodologies which inform the discipline;

K3        Interdisciplinary perspectives on world/societal challenges and the role that Natural Scientists play in their resolution;

K4        An awareness of collaborative working across and between Natural Science disciplines;

K5        Safety, risk, hazard and ethics assessment as relevant to the discipline;

K6        The key factors and benefits of an interdisciplinary approach to science;

K7        The key principles of science used to interrogate the world around us;

K8        The methods for assessing the interactions of life on earth within the natural world;

Specific to the Chemistry Pathway

K9        Inorganic and organic molecular species in chemistry;

K10      The origin and characteristic properties of the principal attractive forces that exist between molecules and their dependence on molecular structure;

K11      Periodic trends and irregularities in selected properties of the elements;

Specific to the Bioscience Pathway

K12     The complexity of biological structures, their organization, metabolism and division of cells, and how these can be interrogated to assess function;

K13     The link between cellular and molecular changes and physiological adaptation in health and disease;

Specific to the Mathematics Pathway

K14     Understanding of fundamental mathematical methods; 

K15     Logical mathematical arguments and deductive reasoning, including the process of mathematical proof; 

K16     A range of algebraic, analytical, geometrical, numerical and statistical techniques in mathematical sciences; 

Specific to the Physics Pathway

K17      Basic concepts in classical physics and their application to relevance to physical phenomena;

K18     The importance and mathematical description of basic wave concepts and their role in quantum mechanics; 

K19     The basic principles and physical laws governing the behaviour of matter and waves. 

Specific to the Materials Pathway

K20      The concepts involved in material development and characterisation with respect to properties and function;

K21      Key principles utilised for the processing of materials; 

Specific to the Geography Pathway

K22      The major components of the Earth's physical-geographic systems, including patterns of variation in the global environment and connections between global systems and local landscapes;

K23      Geomorphic processes and products characteristic of particular regional land systems;

K24      The evaluation and monitoring of environmental hazards and an appreciation of how to manage and mitigate these.

On successful completion of Part D, students will be able to demonstrate:

K25      A systematic and comprehensive understanding of knowledge, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights in the natural sciences, much of which is at the forefront of scientific research;

K26      Knowledge and awareness of the accepted norms and professional expectations associated with the generation and publication of scientific results;

3.2 Skills and other attributes

a. Subject-specific cognitive skills:

On successful completion of this programme, students will be able to:

C1      Apply discipline-specific knowledge to other areas within the Natural Sciences to tackle multidisciplinary issues;

C2      Identify the benefits and capitalise on cross-discipline collaboration, making use of other discipline contributions to solve problems in a collaborative manner;

C3      Apply their knowledge and understanding of essential facts, key concepts, principles and theories to solve problems and debate critical issues within the subject area;

C4      Identify and analyse novel scientific problems and plan strategies for their solution, and apply acquired knowledge and understanding to inform individual research;

C5      Solve quantitative and qualitative problems and collate, evaluate and interpret scientific information and data;

C6      Research, evaluate, justify and critically evaluate scientific material and arguments in a coherent and organised way appropriately adapted to the audience;

Additional subject specific cognitive skills at Part D:

C7       Select appropriate research and enquiry strategies to solve complex problems or problems with incomplete data;

C8       Demonstrate advanced analytical thinking skills and be able to handle complex information in a structured and systematic way;

C9       Critically evaluate current research, appropriate to the speciality;

b. Subject-specific practical skills:

On successful completion of this programme, students will be able to:

P1        Apply a broad range of practical investigative techniques including data collection, data analysis, statistical evaluation, hypotheses formulating and testing, current contextualisation and external referencing and validation;

P2        Record, describe and critically evaluate data sets;

P3        Extract, manipulate and interpret data from scientific databases;

P4        Handle materials safely by taking into account their physical and inherent material properties, e.g. chemical hazards or biological activity;

P5        Conduct standard laboratory (and/ or field) procedures including the operation of standard instrumentation for the analysis of materials and recording of results;

P6        Appropriately, monitor, record and document events and changes by observation and measurement;

P7        Plan, design and execute practical investigations from the problem recognition stage, to the selection of appropriate techniques and procedures, through to the evaluation and appraisal of the results and findings;

P8        Conduct thorough hazard/risk assessments associated with scientific investigations covering the materials, equipment and laboratory/field environment and comply with relevant ethical approval procedures;

Additional subject specific practical skills at Part D

P9        Apply appropriate research techniques to develop new insights and investigate and solve problems;

P10      Explain experimental results in terms of a broad range of theoretical mechanisms and concepts;

c. Key transferable skills:

On successful completion of this programme, students will be able to:

T1        Communicate effectively across disciplines to disseminate scientific knowledge and collaborate to tackle problems;

T2        Communicate in a variety of formats, both written and oral, to a range of audiences;

T3        Effectively generate ideas and solutions to problems in a collaborative manner across the Natural Science disciplines; 

T4        Apply numeracy and computational skills including error analysis, order of magnitude estimations, correct use of units and modes of data presentation;

T5        Generate, organise, analyse and interpret quantitative, numerical, statistical and other forms of data effectively;

T6        Select and apply appropriate technology from the range available to collate, present and evaluate results and ideas to a professional standard;

T7        Work independently to solve problems, find alternative solutions, reach end goals and evaluate outcomes;

T8        Deploy critical judgements and evaluations to arrive at supported conclusions;

T9       Effectively manage time and effort in the organisation of work to ensure independent and pragmatic learning;

T10      Work effectively in a team by co-operating and negotiating with peers, making decisions and resolving issues, difficulties and conflicts, as applicable;

Additional transferable skills at Part D

T11      Exercise initiative and demonstrate personal responsibility including in the making of decisions;

T12      Demonstrate an advanced ability to handle and interpret complex information in a structured and systematic way;

T13      Develop the independent learning skills required for continued professional development and lifelong learning;

T14      Interrogate and apply a variety of theoretical and interpretive positions and be able to weigh up the importance of alternative perspectives.

The full range of intended learning outcomes that will be achieved by students taking the Natural Sciences programme will be dependent upon which combination of routes they choose to study; in Parts B-D students have a wide selection of module choice enabling them to tailor their course around core subjects. (Individual module specifications should be consulted for details on specific knowledge and understanding and skills obtained from optional modules within the programme.)

4. Programme structure

BSc(Hons) and MSci Natural Sciences

  • Each year must equate to 120 credits.
  • In Part A all students undertake 40 credits of core modules.  In addition to the core modules, students choose two of the six pathways. Students may not choose the Mathematics pathway together with the Materials pathway or the Bioscience pathway together with the Geography pathway.
  • In Part B all students undertake the Interdisciplinary Science module (20 credits).  In addition, students choose which of the two pathways will be their Major pathway (60 credits) and which will be their Minor pathway (40 credits)
  • In Part C students undertake an Interdisciplinary Research Project (40 credits).  Students may choose to either take only their Major Pathway or may choose to continue studying two pathways (80 credits in Major if specialising in one pathway or 40 credits in two pathways).
  • In Part D students undertake an Interdisciplinary Research Project (60 credit), plus 60 credits of modules from one pathway only (which must have been the Major Pathway in Part B).

 


Part A

In Part A all students undertake 40 credits of core modules.  In addition to the core modules, students choose two of the six pathways. Students may not choose the Mathematics pathway together with the Materials pathway or the Bioscience pathway together with the Geography pathway. 

Core Modules for all students

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

MAA370

Mathematics for Problem Solving

20

1+2

CMA113

Science Communication

10

1

MAA271

Statistics and Data Analysis

10

2

Mathematics Pathway (if taking this pathway, students may not choose the Materials pathway)

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

MAA150

Mathematical Methods 1

10

1

MAA250

Mathematical Methods 2

10

2

MAA142

Linear Algebra 1

10

1

MAA241

Linear Algebra 2

10

2

Physics Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

PHA901

Core Physics I: Foundations of Physics

20

1

PHA902

Core Physics II: Classical Physics of Particles, Fields and Devices

20

2

Chemistry Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

CMA112

Fundamental Chemistry

20

1

CMA106

Structure and Reactivity 1

20

2

Bioscience Pathway (if taking this pathway, students may not choose the Geography pathway)

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

PSA603

Genetics and Molecular Biology

20

2

PSA602

Biochemistry and Cell Biology

20

1

Materials Pathway (if taking this pathway, students may not choose the Mathematics pathway)

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

MPA201

Introductory Materials Science

10

1

MPA205

Thermodynamics and Phase Equilbria

10

1

MPA321

Introduction to Materials Processing

10

2

MPA207

Mechanics of Materials

10

2

Geography Pathway (if taking this pathway, students may not choose the Biosciences pathway)

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

GYA101

Earth System Science

10

1

GYA008

Global Environmental Change at a Local Scale

10

1

GYA112

Environmental Hazards: Mitigation and Management

20

2

 


 

Part B

In Part B all students undertake the Interdisciplinary Science module (20 credits).  In addition, students choose which of the two pathways will be their Major pathway (60 credits) and which will be their Minor pathway (40 credits).

Core Module for all students

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

CMB111

Interdisciplinary Science

20

1+2

Mathematics Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

MAA270

Introduction to Probability and Statistics

10

1

Major+ Minor

MAB151 

Mathematical Methods III

10

1

Major + Minor

MAB250

ODEs & Calculus of Variations

10

2

Major + Minor

MAB270

Statistical Modelling

10

2

Major + Minor

MABxxx

Rings and Polynomials

10

1

Major Only

MAB241

Complex Variables

10

2

Major Only

Physics Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

PHB901

Core Physics III: Quantum and Condensed Matter Physics

20

1

Major + Minor

PHB902

Core Physics IV: Condensed Matter, Materials and Statistical Physics

20

2

Major + Minor

PHB90x

Physics Laboratory I for Natural Sciences

20

1+2

Major Only

Chemistry Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

CMB112

Laboratory Skills for Natural Sciences

20

1+2

Major + Minor

CMB106

Structure and Reactivity 2

20

1

Major + Minor

CMB104

Spectroscopy and Analysis 2

20

1

Major Only

Bioscience Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

PSB613

Cellular signalling and transport

20

2

Major + Minor

PSA606

Anatomy and Physiology

20

1+2

Major + Minor

PSB612

Functional Genomics

20

1

Major Only

Materials Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

MPB312

Materials Processing

30

1+2

Major + Minor

MPB313

Materials in Service

10

1

Major + Minor

MPB209

Materials Characterisation

10

2

Major Only

MPB231

Biomaterials 1 (Biomaterials for Tissue Engineering)

10

2

Major Only

Geography Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

GYB230

Earth Surface Processes and Landforms

20

1+2

Major + Minor

GYB240

Environmental Systems and Resource Management

20

1+2

Major + Minor

GYB201

Remote Sensing and GIS

20

1+2

Major Only


Part I

Students on degree programmes with professional training take a placement between Parts B and C or alternatively for MSci students with permission of the Programme Director, between Parts C and D.  This year leads to the award of a Diploma of Industrial Studies, Professional Studies or International Studies dependent on the nature of the placement.


 

Part C

In Part C students undertake an Interdisciplinary Research Project (40 credits).  Students may choose to either take only their Major Pathway or may choose to continue studying two pathways (80 credits in Major if specialising in one pathway or 40 credits in two pathways).

 Core Module

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

CMCXXX

Interdisciplinary Research Project

40

1+2

 Mathematics Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

MAB170

Probability Theory

10

1

Major + Minor

MAC176

Graph Theory

10

1

Major + Minor

MAC249

Advanced Differential Equations

10

2

Major + Minor

MAC251

Vibrations and Waves

10

2

Major + Minor

MAC175

Operational Research

10

1

Major Only

MAC147

Number Theory

10

1

Major Only

MAC265

Game Theory

10

2

Major Only

MAC297

Mathematical Biology

10

2

Major Only

Physics Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

PHC901

Core Physics V: Advanced topics

20

1+2

Major + Minor

PHC011

General Relativity and Cosmology

20

1+2

Major + Minor

PHB903

Physics Lab II

20

1+2

Major Only

PHC108

Modern Optics

10

2

Major Only

PHC013

Statistical Physics

10

1

Major Only

Chemistry Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

CMC001

Modern Aspects of Organic Chemistry

10

1

Major + Minor

CMC002

Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

10

1

Major + Minor

CMC004

Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis

10

1

Major + Minor

Plus one of the two following modules:

CMC007*

Pharmacokinetics and Drug Metabolism

10

2

Major + Minor

CMC010*

Environmental Chemistry

10

2

Major + Minor

For those taking Chemistry as their one Major Pathway in Part C must choose one 20 credit module from each Semester from the list below

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

CMD213*

Biological Organic Chemistry

20

1

Major Only

CMD214*

Synthesis in Drug Discovery

20

1

Major Only

CMD302*

Advanced Analytical Chemistry Option

20

1

Major Only

CMD303*

Analytical Sciences Research Methodologies

20

1

Major Only

CMD111*

Inorganic Option A

20

2

Major Only

CMD112*

Inorganic Option B

20

2

Major Only

CMD401*

Drugs: Synthesis, Modes of Action and Screening

20

2

Major Only

CMD402*

Drugs: Synthesis and Properties

20

2

Major Only

* Not all of these Part C modules will be available in each academic year. MSci students can take these modules in Part C OR Part D but not both.  

Bioscience Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

PSC621

Cell Adaption and Degeneration

20

1

Major + Minor

PSCxxx

Regenerative Medicine

20

2

Major + Minor

PSC622

Advanced Genetics of Health

20

1

Major Only

PSCxxx

Virology and Oncology

20

2

Major Only 

Materials Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

MPC213

Nano Materials

10

1

Major + Minor

MPC311

Advanced Materials Processing

10

1

Major + Minor

MPC231

Biomaterials 2

10

2

Major + Minor

MPC114

Composite Materials

10

2

Major + Minor

MPC108

Surface Engineering

10

1

Major Only

MPC111

Advanced Principles of Materials

10

1

Major Only

MPC321

Functional Materials

10

2

Major Only 

MPC103

Industrial Case Studies

10

2

Major Only

Geography Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

Major/Minor

GYC211

Snow, Ice and Society

10

1

see note below

GYC315

Environmental Change and Ecological Response

10

1

see note below

GYC207

Aeolian Processes and Landforms

10

1

see note below

GYC909

Dryland Environment Fieldcourse (at additional cost)

20

1

see note below

GYC110

GIS, Modelling and Flood Risk Management

10

2

Major + Minor

GYC300

River Dynamics and the Environment

10

2

Major + Minor

GYC108

Climate and Society

20

2

Major Only

Semester 1 Modules:

If studying Geography as a Minor Pathway please choose 20 credits of modules from the list above

If studying Geography as a Major Pathway please choose 40 credits of modules from the list above

Please note that option combinations may be timetable dependant and that the module GYC909 Dryland Environment Fieldcourse will incur additional costs.


Part D (CMUM19 MSci only)

In Part D students undertake an Interdisciplinary Research Project (60 credit), plus 60 credits of modules from one pathway only (which must be the Major Pathway in Part B).

 Core Module

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

CMDXXX

Interdisciplinary Research Project

60

1+2

 Mathematics Pathway - Choose 30 credits from each Semester from the list below

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

MAD102

Regular and Chaotic Dynamics

15

1

MAP111

Mathematical Modelling I

15

1

MADxxx

Advanced Differential Geometry

15

1

MAD103

Lie Groups and Lie Algebra

15

1

MAP211

Mathematical Modelling II

15

2

MAP201

Elements of PDEs

15

2

MAD203

Functional Analysis

15

2

Physics Pathway - Choose 30 credits from each Semester from the list below

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

PHP100

Mathematical Methods for Interdisciplinary Sciences

15

1

PHD130

Quantum Information

15

1

PHD109

Characterisation Techniques in Solid State Physics

15

1

MAD102

Regular and Chaotic Dynamics

15

1

MAP111

Mathematical Modelling I

15

1

PHD201

Physic of Complex Systems

15

2

PHD230

Quantum Computing

15

2

PHD202

Superconductivity and Nanoscience

15

2

MAP211

Mathematical Modelling II

15

2

MAP213

Fluid Mechanics

15

2

Chemistry Pathway - Choose 60 credits from the list below (up to 40 credits per Semester)

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

CMD213*

Biological Organic Chemistry

20

1

CMD214*

Synthesis in Drug Discovery

20

1

CMD302*

Advanced Analytical Chemistry Option

20

1

CMD303*

Analytical Sciences Research Methodologies

20

1

CMD111*

Inorganic Option A

20

2

CMD112*

Inorganic Option B

20

2

CMD401*

Drugs: Synthesis, Modes of Action and Screening

20

2

CMD402*

Drugs: Synthesis and Properties

20

2

* Not all of these Part D modules will be available in each academic year. Students can take these modules in Part C OR Part D but not both.  

Bioscience Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

PSD632

Advanced Laboratory and Research Methods in Biology

20

1+2

PSD631

Contemporary Health Issues

20

1+2

PSDxxx

To be confirmed

20

1+2

Materials Pathway

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

MPP551

Advanced Characterisation Techniques

15

1

MPP552

Design with Engineering Materials

15

1

MPP509

Advances in Biomaterials

15

2

Plus one of the two following modules:

MPP555

Metals Processing and Properties

15

2

MPP503

Polymerisation and Polymer Blends

15

2

Geography Pathway  - Choose 60 credits from the list below (up to 40 credits per Semester)

Module Code

Module Title

Module Weight

Semester

GYD021

Tools for River Management

20

1

GYD023

Lake Monitoring and Management

20

1

GYD029

Applied Environmental GIS

10

2

GYD033

Wind Erosion Measurement and Mitigation

10

2

GYD034

Evidence-based Environmental Management

10

2

GYD035

Hydroclimatological Monitoring and Modelling

10

2

GYD036

Natural Hazard and Catastrophe Modelling for Environment

10

2

 

 

5. Criteria for Progression and Degree Award

In order to progress from Part A to Part B, from Part B to C, from C to D (if applicable) and to be eligible for the award of an Honours degree, candidates must satisfy the minimum credit requirements set out in Regulation XX and Regulation XI for programmes with DPS, DIntS or DIS (if applicable).

6. Relative Weighting of Parts of the Programme for the Purposes of Final Degree Classification

Candidates' final degree classification will be determined on the basis of their performance in degree level Module Assessments in Parts B and C (and D if applicable). For BSc degrees, the percentage mark for each Part will be combined in the ratio Part C 60%: Part B 40% to determine the final percentage mark. For MSci degrees, the percentage mark for each Part will be combined in the ratio Part D 40%: Part C 40%: Part B 20% to determine the final percentage mark.

Prospective students

Information on studying at Loughborough University, including course information, facilities, and student experience.

Find out more »

1. Select programme specification
2. Save specification as a PDF
3. Print PDF