Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

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FacultyFaculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
OfferedParkville First semester 2013 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Ben Capuano


Previously coded PSC2021


Analytical Methods lays a foundation of knowledge for the analytical identification and quantitation of chemical entities used in the pharmaceutical and manufacturing industries (eg polymers, cosmetics & paints). The subject provides the participant with basic principles and concepts of atomic and molecular spectroscopy (spectrochemical methods of analysis), separation (chromatographic) methodologies, compositions of solutions & chemical equilibria, classical (titrimetric) methods of analysis and electroanalytical methods of analysis.

This will involve:

  • chemical equilibria
  • classical methods of analysis
  • analytical separations
  • spectrochemical methods of analysis
  • electrochemical methods of analysis.


At the end of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Describe the chemical compositions of aqueous solutions, the effects of electrolytes on chemical equilibria and solve equilibrium calculations for simple and complex systems;
  2. Describe the basic principles underlying gravimetric and titrimetric methods of analysis (including precipitation titrations, neutralization titrations, complex acid/base systems, complexation reactions and titrations and non-aqueous titrations) and perform simple calculations to determine the concentrations of species of interest;
  3. Develop an understanding of basic separations and chromatographic theory and apply this knowledge in predicting the separation, identification and quantitation of compounds;
  4. Acquire knowledge of commonly used instrumental techniques for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of compounds, namely GLC and HPLC;
  5. Explain the basic properties of electromagnetic radiation and the interactions between radiation and matter on an atomic and molecular level and calculate specific spectrochemical descriptors (energy, frequency, wavelength, % transmittance and absorbance);
  6. Describe the functions of instrumental components used in optical spectrometry;
  7. Describe the basic principles and applications of molecular absorption, molecular fluorescence and atomic absorption/emission spectroscopy;
  8. Describe the fundamental principles of electrochemistry in terms of oxidation/reduction reactions, perform simple electrochemical calculations based upon the Nernst equation and describe the application of electrochemical techniques (oxidation/reduction titrations, potentiometry and voltammetry) to the analysis of commercially significant compounds.


Final exam (3 hour): 60%; quizzes: 10%; practical experiments: 20%; practical exam: 10%.

Chief examiner(s)

Contact hours

Contact hours for on-campus students:
Twenty eight 1-hour lectures
Six 1-hour tutorials
One 2-hour HPLC workshop
Eight 4-hour practicals
One 4-hour practical exam


PSC1021 Bioorganic and medicinal chemistry I
PSC1022 Bioorganic and medicinal chemistry II
PSC1041 Mathematics for pharmaceutical sciences
PSC1031 Physical chemistry I
PSC1032 Physical chemistry II

Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: