A great benefit of studying chemistry at Trinity is the provision of in-house maths tuition for the first year course.
Over 40% of chemistry students at Trinity have graduated with 1st-class Honours over the last five years. In 2018, this included a student ranked in the top 2% of the whole University cohort. Well done!
Chemistry has a long and distinguished history at Trinity; the Balliol-Trinity Laboratory located in what is now Trinity’s back yard was one of the first chemistry laboratories in Oxford, and housed many great advances in the subject including Cyril Hinshelwood’s Nobel Prize-winning work in chemical kinetics. World-leading research in the present day chemistry department is still deeply rooted in Trinity, with our tutors carrying out research into laser spectroscopy for medical diagnostics, transparent conducting oxides for solar energy conversion, and ionic electrolytes used in energy storage devices.
The Chemistry community at Trinity is friendly, enthusiastic, diverse, hard-working, supportive, and ambitious. This combined with the College’s beautiful grounds and central location – both in the centre of town and only a few minutes’ walk from the chemistry department – make an ideal environment for studying chemistry.
We admit students to study the four-year MChem course. They have a varied weekly program involving lectures and laboratory work provided in the Chemistry Department, and tutorials and classes in College. Trinity students benefit from expert tutors in each of the main branches of chemistry (physical, inorganic, organic) including a dedicated Lecturer in maths for chemistry students. There is a longstanding partnership with St. Peter’s College, whereby students are taught physical and inorganic chemistry at Trinity and organic chemistry at St. Peter’s. In the first year students will typically attend three weekly tutorial meetings with tutors – two in chemistry and one in maths – then two per week in the second and third years. Tutorials (usually in groups of three students) foster an open-ended and collegial environment, providing the opportunity for students to discuss their weekly reading and set problems, and topics arising from the week’s lectures. The tutors set internal College exams (‘collections’) each term to help students prepare for the end-of-year exams.
Our chemistry tutors are active research scientists who spend a large part of each week leading research groups in their laboratories. The direct transfer of experience from laboratory to tutorial creates an exciting environment in which to learn, as well as regular opportunities for students to hear about, and become involved in, the world-leading research of the chemistry department. Susan Perkin and Dean Sheppard are the tutors in physical chemistry; Charlotte Williams is the tutor in inorganic chemistry, and Mark Moloney (St. Peter’s) is the tutor in organic chemistry. College lecturers regularly support the main tutors in each area of the subject.
Students are admitted to study chemistry at Trinity according to the criteria detailed in the departmental admissions pages. Preferred A-level subjects are Chemistry, Mathematics, and at least one other academic A-level. Usually, but not always, this would be an additional science A-level (Physics, Biology or Further Mathematics). Students from non-standard educational backgrounds are welcome to apply and can discuss their qualifications and suitability with the admissions office or tutors in advance.