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Advanced environmental Chemistry, 15 Credits

Swedish name: Avancerad miljökemi

This syllabus is valid: 2017-12-11 and until further notice

Course code: 5KE177

Credit points: 15

Education level: Second cycle

Main Field of Study and progress level: Chemistry: Second cycle, has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirements

Grading scale: Three-grade scale

Responsible department: Department of Chemistry

Established by: Faculty Board of Science and Technology, 2018-01-10


The course deals with organic and inorganic substances in the environment with respect to their chemical structure and function, sources and emissions, remediation, distribution, transformation and fate in the environment, as well as their health and effects on biota. Critical environmental chemical processes in biota, soil, sediment, water and air are studied experimentally and theoretically. The course also introduces risk assessment with relevant methodologies, processes and legislation. The course gives examples on how sampling and subsequent analysis can be used to study and follow processes in the environment, as well as how these processes can be modelled theoretically using computer software. It covers analytical methods such as inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), liquid chromatography (LC), gas chromatography (GC), mass spectrometry (MS), as individual techniques or in combination. The course ends with an independent project where the students, in smaller groups, perform an environmental study including sampling, sample pretreatment, analysis, data treatment, report writing and oral presentation.

Expected learning outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes
After completing the course, students should be able to:

  • categorize, compare, and discuss relevant emission pathways and sources in the emission scenarios that involve the release of chemicals
  • explain, evaluate and discuss how to take representative samples using different sampling methods.
  • explain the transport, accumulation and transformation processes of organic and inorganic substances in the environment, based on their chemical properties
  • explain fundamental physical principles for the different analysis methods covered in the course, as well as how measurement data are based on these
  • calculate the outcome of environmental processes in aqueous solution using thermodynamic data
  • critically examine and interpret experimental data as well as data from computer modelling
  • describe how risk assessments are performed involving the different steps from exposure to effect
  • discuss sustainability aspects related to chemicals and resources
  • independently, and within given time frames, explain and critically discuss complex environmental chemistry principles, problems and research results which fall within the content of the course, both orally and in writing
  • independently plan and practically execute an environmental study including sampling, sample handling, analysis and quality control


Required Knowledge

90 ECTS credits, of which at least 60 ECTS credits are in the main area of chemistry, or the equivalent and English B/6.

Form of instruction

The course is taught using student-active teaching methods, which include case discussions and seminars, self-study sessions, project work, problem-based learning (PBL), tutorials, as well as practical work in the laboratory and field sampling. Reports are presented orally and in writing.

Examination modes

The course will be examined through written reports and attendance at compulsory seminars, as well as field sampling and lab sessions (lack of attendance equals the mark Fail). On the written reports the mark Fail (U), Pass (G) or Pass with distinction (VG) will be given. On the whole course one of the grades Fail (U), Pass (G) or Pass with distinction (VG) will be given. To pass the course all examinations and compulsory modules must be passed. For VG all examinations and compulsory modules must be passed and the grade VG must be obtained on the final report. Those who pass an examination are not permitted to retake it in order to obtain a higher grade. A student who has failed two exams for a course or part of a course, are entitled to have appointed a new examiner, unless there are special reasons against it (HF 6 kap. § 22). Requests for new examiners are made to the Head of the Department of Chemistry. 

Academic Credit Transfer
Academic credit transfer is always evaluated individually (see the University rules for academic credit transfer).


The literature list is not available through the web. Please contact the faculty.