module specification

CY4080 - Laboratory Techniques with Data Handling (2023/24)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2023/24
Module title Laboratory Techniques with Data Handling
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 150
30 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
86 hours Guided independent study
34 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Practical Portfolio (c. 1275 words)
Coursework 50%   Personal Development Portfolio (c. 1275 words)
Running in 2023/24

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Thursday Afternoon

Module summary

This module further develops the practical abilities of the student and the ability to record and process increasingly complex data. The module reinforces the importance of an appreciation of the theoretical principles underlying the procedures that will be investigated in the laboratory and in workshops. Students will also be expected to reflect on their personal and professional development throughout this module.

The aim of this module is to ensure that you will develop key skills and knowledge that will enable you to:

  1. enhance your practical skills in the areas of synthesis, purification and characterisation of products;
  2. enhance your skills in data recording, processing and appropriate analyses of laboratory results;
  3. understand the concepts that are associated with a variety of analytical processes routinely used in a laboratory;
  4. to be more aware of the parameters that govern chemical processes (on small and large scales).

Prior learning requirements

Available for Study Abroad? YES


Qualitative analysis and experiment design in accordance to GLP. Effective use of information sources: research (location of paper-based and electronic sources of scientific data and information); appropriate retrieval (interpretation, abstraction and summary of information). Attribution of source material: citation of published and unpublished (or anecdotal) material. Scientific communication: written (including ‘chat-room’/post-webinar submissions) and extended practical reports (LOs 3, 4). Data: word processing, use of spreadsheets and graphical presentation (scatter plots and display of summary statistics, regressions analyses, t-distributions and t-tests). Effective data handling (analysis of class results and case studies) (LOs 4, 5, 6). Plagiarism and Scientific Fraud: definition, implications and penalties. Breadth and structure of chosen discipline and relationship to related disciplines. Identification of the development of transferable skills for employment in scientific environments. Professional issues: career opportunities; professional qualifications; production and maintenance of personal profile and curriculum vitae (LOs 1, 2).

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Teaching and learning sessions include lectures/tutorials/workshops (18 h), and practicals (16 h) with feedback where appropriate.

Students are required to research the background to the practical work prior to carrying it out, this will include the studying of online video material (10 h) as well as literature surveys guided by pre-lab assignments (20 h). Sessions not only deal with the skills of practical chemistry but also focus on the recording, handling and interpretation of data, and the reporting of scientific information. Furthermore students are expected to be well prepared for each experiment and be able to work in a safe, professional manner. Continuous feedback on all aspects of practical work is given. Students will also submit a coursework assignment which will be appropriately researched and demonstrate an understanding of the use of IT in data handling and presentation of scientific reports (30 h). Students will also be expected to reflect on the material presented and develop their own understanding of the material (56 h).

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module the students will be able to:

  1. assess their strengths, weaknesses and values, and identify broad areas for personal growth and development;
  2. demonstrate an understanding of future possible career paths and the opportunities provided through subject study and extra-curricular activities;
  3. use the learning centre and on-line resources to access basic information relating to handling chemicals and biologically active materials: physical properties, toxicity, safe manipulation, and utilise a standard format to cite the sources of such information in their own work;
  4. undertake appropriate and efficient methods of collecting data, and record scientific data from an experiment in an approved scientific style;
  5. analyse data and experimental observations and discuss any conclusions drawn from there to display knowledge of fundamental principles governing an experiment and its expected outcomes or indeed any significant deviations, by use of appropriate calculations to verify the reliability of experimentally obtained data;
  6. demonstrate proficiency in IT skills: word processing and spreadsheets, embedding of on-line links.
  7. demonstrate confidence, resilience, ambition and creativity and will act as inclusive, collaborative and socially responsible professionals in their discipline.

Assessment strategy

The module will be assessed through the combination of continually assessed coursework (pre-lab exercises, data sheets and lab reports to form a practical portfolio, 50%) and the construction of a personal development portfolio (personal statement, CV, and data handling exercise, 50%). The data handling curriculum will be delivered all the way through the module, elements of which will be used to statistically analyse ‘whole-class’ results and develop robust analytical methodologies.

The students must pass with an overall mark of 40% or over.