CHEM 740 : Current Topics in Analytical Chemistry


2020 Semester Two (1205) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

Principles and applications of modern analytical chemistry. Emphasis will be on the solution of problems met by analytical chemists, including a study of the development of instrumentation, and a study of current trends in analytical research. No formal prerequisite, but knowledge of analytical chemistry at the level covered in CHEM 340 will be assumed.

Course Overview

This course is recommended for  those that are interested in analysis in chemistry, in particular students wishing to further advance their knowledge of analytical chemistry and its uses and applications, both to conduct research and/or use in the workplace. The skills developed in this course are particularly useful for those wishing to have a career involving chemical analysis. In addition, this course is good preparation and/or accompaniment for anyone doing postgraduate research in  analytical chemistry or related areas. 

Course Requirements

No pre-requisites or restrictions

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Describe and apply the fundamentals of modern mass spectrometry (Capability 1)
  2. Describe the advantages and disadvantages of ion sources and mass analysers (Capability 1 and 2)
  3. Discuss molecular and element specific MS techniques (Capability 1 and 2)
  4. Explain the coupling of separation methods with mass spectrometers (Capability 1)
  5. Analyse mass spectra to elucidate chemical structures and identify characteristic features of mass spectra (Capability 1, 2 and 3)
  6. Describe and apply the working principles of isotopic ratio mass spectrometry. (Capability 1 and 2)
  7. Use and apply various statistical analysis techniques, including ANOVA, weighted and non-weighted linear regression, unsupervised and supervised pattern recognition methods and multivariate regression methods. (Capability 1)
  8. Describe statistical concepts such as limits of detection and quantitation, factorial design of experiments, outliers, residuals and correlations. (Capability 1 and 2)
  9. Apply different univariate and multivariate data analysis methods to interpret, explore or obtain specific information from chemical and spectroscopic data. (Capability 1, 2, 3 and 4)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Assignments 30% Individual Coursework
Final Exam 70% Individual Examination
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Final Exam

Key Topics

Topics will include: modern mass spectrometry methods and their applications in drug development, advanced analytical techniques applied to complex matrices and advanced data analysis. 

Learning Resources

Course material will also be posted on Canvas. Various relevant documents and research papers will be posted by the Teaching Staff throughout the semester.

Special Requirements

No special requirements.

Workload Expectations

This course is a standard 15 point course and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15 point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, you can expect 24 hours of lectures,  36 hours of reading and thinking about the content and 60 hours of work on assignments and/or test preparation across the semester. 

Digital Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website at

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page:

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter (


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course you may be asked to submit your coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. The final decision on the completion mode for a test or examination, and remote invigilation arrangements where applicable, will be advised to students at least 10 days prior to the scheduled date of the assessment, or in the case of an examination when the examination timetable is published.

Published on 10/07/2020 10:57 a.m.