PSC3121 - Advanced Synthetic organic chemistry - 2017

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.


Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences


Dr Bernard Flynn

Unit guides



  • First semester 2017 (Day)


Previous title Synthetic Medicinal Chemistry


The principle aim of this subject is to provide students with a detailed knowledge of numerous aspects of synthetic organic chemistry, as it applies to modern medicinal chemistry.

The subject follows from PSC2021 and PSC2122, covering advanced organic synthesis and methodology. Topics include catalysis in synthesis, radical chemistry, organometallic chemistry, heterocyclic chemistry, reactive intermediates and stereochemistry, as well as retrosynthetic analysis. An understanding of reaction mechanisms will be emphasized throughout. The practical component reinforces aspects of the lecture course with laboratory experience.

This will involve:

  • catalysis and biocatalysis
  • organometallic reactions
  • radical reactions
  • heterocyclic chemistry
  • asymmetric synthesis
  • reactive Intermediates


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

  1. A wider knowledge of synthetic methodology;
  2. A knowledge of the use of catalysis in synthetic chemistry;
  3. An understanding of radical reactions and their role in synthesis;
  4. A broader knowledge of organometallic and heterocyclic chemistry;
  5. The ability to undertake a retrosynthetic analysis and to design a synthesis of a target molecule;
  6. The ability to read and understand the synthetic organic chemistry literature;
  7. The practical ability to perform a routine synthesis in the laboratory and experience of most common operations in a synthetic chemistry laboratory.


Final exam (2.5 hour): 60%; mid-semester exam: 10%; practical assessments: 20%; practical exam: 10%.

Workload requirements

Contact hours for on-campus students:

  • Twenty 1-hour lectures
  • Nine 4-hour laboratory practical exercises, including practical exam

Additional requirements:

  • Twelve hours practical report preparation

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)


PSC2021 Structural Organic Chemistry

PSC2122 Synthetic Organic Chemistry

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