Faculty of Engineering

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This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2016 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.

Monash University

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Department of Chemical Engineering


Dr Xinyi Zhang



  • First semester 2016 (Day)


This unit introduces the foundation concepts of modern organic chemistry through a systematic treatment of: covalent bonding and the shapes of molecules, chirality and stereoisomerism; the nature, nomenclature and reactions of alkanes and cycloalkanes, alkenes and alkynes, haloalkanes, alcohols and ethers, benzene and its derivatives, amines, aldehydes and ketones, carboxylic acids. The nature, properties and synthesis of polymers reinforce the fundamental aspects of this topic. The unit also introduces the important topic of kinetics covering rates of chemical reactions and the kinetics of complex and enzymatic reactions in both homogeneous and heterogeneous systems.


On completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  • describe the principles of bonding in organic molecules
  • demonstrate competency in the naming of organic molecules according to the nomenclature rules
  • describe common organic chemical reactions
  • demonstrate an awareness of the interplay of functional groups in organic reactions
  • communicate the key features of these chemical principles both verbally and in writing
  • demonstrate competency in commonly used organic chemical laboratory techniques
  • Perform and analyse experiments involving aspects organic synthesis and product characterization
  • describe the definitions and distinctions between average rate, instantaneous rate and initial rate of a chemical reaction and the related rate constants
  • recognise the characteristics of zero, first and second order rate laws and be able to evaluate the corresponding rate constants
  • outline the major experimental techniques used to obtain kinetic data, including techniques applicable to fast reactions
  • understand such terms as complex reaction, elementary step, mechanism, molecularity, rate-determining step
  • describe the Lindemann-Hinshelwood mechanism of unimolecular reactions
  • discuss chain reactions, polymerisation kinetics, catalysis and temperature dependence in chemical kinetics
  • perform and analyse experiments exemplifying a variety of classes of chemical rate processes.


Laboratory exercises: 20%
Examination (3 hours): 70%
Hurdle requirement: Laboratory course must be competed at Pass level
Web based continuous assessment: 10%

To pass this unit a student must achieve a minimum score of 50% in the laboratory practical component and a minimum of 30% for the end-of-semester exam.

Workload requirements

3 hours lecture/tutorials per week, 24 hours laboratory classes per semester and 8 hours of private study per week

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)


VCE Chemistry 3/4, or ENG1070