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Programme syllabus:

Master's Programme in Chemistry, 120 Credits

Swedish name: Masterprogrammet i kemi

This programme syllabus is valid: HT20 and until further notice

Programme code: NAKEM

Credit points: 120

Registration number: FS 3.1.3-145-14

Responsible faculty: Faculty of Science and Technology

Established by: Faculty Board of Science and Technology, 2014-02-19

Revised by: Faculty Board of Science and Technology, 2020-03-11

Entry Requirements

A Bachelor's degree or equivalent first-cycle qualification comprising of at least 180 ECTS or a corresponding qualification from an internationally recognised university. Specific entry requirements are: 60 ECTS in Chemistry.Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish upper secondary course English B/6.


After completing a bachelor's degree, the student has the right to obtain a master's degree in science (M.Sc.) in accordance with the local degree description established by the Vice Chancellor, as detailed in the following link:
"Naturvetenskaplig masterexamen" translates to Degree of Master of Science (120 ECTS) in English. The degree is awarded in the main area of Chemistry or in Chemistry with one of these three specializations: Medicinal Chemistry, Environmental Chemistry, Biochemistry.

Description of the education for current education cycle

Chapter 1 , Section 9 of the Higher Education Act: Advanced university education shall be based principally on the knowledge the students have acquired during their basic university education or on equivalent knowledge.

Second-cycle courses and study programmes shall be based fundamentally on the knowledge acquired by students during first-cycle courses and study programmes, or its equivalent.
Second-cycle courses and study programmes shall involve the acquisition of specialist knowledge, competence and skills in relation to first-cycle courses and study programmes, and in addition to the requirements for first-cycle courses and study programmes shall:

  • further develop the ability of students to integrate and make autonomous use of their knowledge,
  • develop the students' ability to deal with complex phenomena, issues and situations, and
  • develop the students' potential for professional activities that demand considerable autonomy, or for research and development work. Ordinance (2006:173).

National goals for current degree

Knowledge and understanding

For obtaining the master's degree the student shall

  • show knowledge and understanding within the main area of the education, including both a broad knowledge in the field and a significant in-depth knowledge in certain parts of the area, and in-depth insight into current research and development work; and
  • show in-depth knowledge of methodology within the main area of education.

Skills and Abilities

For the master's degree the student must

  • demonstrate the ability to critically and systematically integrate knowledge and to analyze, assess and manage complex phenomena, issues and situations even with limited information;
  • demonstrate the ability to critically, independently, and creatively identify and formulate issues, to plan and - with adequate methods - carry out qualified tasks within a given time frame and thereby contribute to the enhancement of knowledge and evaluation of the work done;
  • demonstrate the ability to present and discuss, in both national and international contexts, orally and in writing, their conclusions and the underlying knowledge and arguments in dialogue with different groups; and
  • demonstrate the skills that are required to participate in research and development work or to work independently in other qualified activities.

Evaluation ability and approach

For the master's degree the student must

  • demonstrate the ability to make judgments within the main area of education with regard to relevant scientific, social and ethical aspects, and to show awareness of ethical aspects of research and deve­lopment work;
  • show insight into the possibilities and limitations of science, its role in society and the responsibility of individuals for how it is used; and
  • demonstrate the ability to identify the need for additional knowledge and to take responsibility for his/her own development of knowledge.

Local goals for current degree

For obtaining the master's degree, the student should specially:

Knowledge and understanding

  • Show in-depth knowledge and skills within the main area of education (Chemistry).

Skills and Abilities
Demonstrate a good ability to plan, carry out and evaluate scientific studies;

  • show in-depth skills in experimental and theoretical work with adequate methods;
  • demonstrate the ability to work independently and in collaboration with others;
  • show the ability to explain and discuss facts, results obtained and draw conclusions, both writing and orally, with clarity in English; and
  • show the ability to search and critically analyze information.

Examination format

Examination is normally done at the end of each course and can be oral and/or written. The exam can be wholly or partly replaced by continuous knowledge control within the framework of the teaching (e.g., in the form of discussion seminars, oral and/or written reports, etc…)

Students who fail at an examination must be given the opportunity to participate in further examinations according to the rules stated in the syllabus. A student who has taken two examinations in a course or a part of a course without obtaining a pass grade is entitled to the nomination of another examiner, unless there are special reasons to the contrary (Högskoleförordningen [SFS 1993:100] 6 Kap, 22§; The Swedish Higher Education Ordinance, Chapter 6, Section 22). Requests for a new examiner are made to the head of the Department of Chemistry.


Grades are set for each course and if considered appropriate also for sub-courses in a course. Grading is done only when all exams and all compulsory parts, such as, e.g., laboratory work, project reports, and assignments, are assessed. Unless otherwise stated in the syllabus, the grades Fail (U), Pass (G) or Pass with Distinction (VG) are used. A person who has passed the examination must not undergo a new test for a higher grade on the same course.

Transfer of Credits

Students have the right to apply for transfer of credits from previous education in accordance with the Swedish Higher Education Ordinance, Chapter 6, Sections 6-8:
Section 6
If a student at a higher education institution in Sweden has successfully completed a higher education course or study programme, she or he is entitled to transfer the credits awarded for a course or study programme at another higher education institution. This does not apply, however, if there is a substantial difference between these courses or study programmes.
The same applies for students who have successfully completed a course or study programme
1.   at a university or higher education institution in Denmark, Finland, Iceland or Norway or a signatory to the Council of Europe's Convention of 11 April 1997 on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education in the European Region (Swedish Treaty Series 2001:46), or
2.   at Nordiska högskolan för folkhälsovetenskap (NHV - The Nordic School of Public Health). Ordinance (2006:1053).
Section 7
A student is entitled to transfer credits from a course or study programme other than that laid down in Section 6 if the nature and extent of the knowledge and skills cited by the student are such that they correspond on the whole to the course or study programme for which the credits are to be recognised. A student may also be given credit for corresponding knowledge and skills acquired in a vocational or professional capacity. Ordinance (2006:1053).
Section 8
The higher education institution shall assess whether credits can be awarded for the prior course or study programme or professional or vocational experience.
Credits may only be awarded to those who are students unless otherwise provided by statute or ordinance. Ordinance (2010:1064).
See also https://www.umu.se/en/student/my-studies/transfer-of-credits
If the decision of the credit transfer application is negative, it is possible to appeal to the "Board of Appeal for Higher Education". A negative decision must also be justified (written justification).


The Master's program in Chemistry consists of mandatory courses and optional courses. The program ends with a thesis of at least 30 ECTS.

Mandatory courses
The mandatory courses in the programme consist of:
5KE174 Biophysical-Chemical Concepts, 15 ECTS
5KE175 Advanced Experimental Tools in Chemistry, 15 ECTS
5KE053 Chemometry, 7.5 ECTS
5KE176 Computational chemistry, 7.5 ECTS
5KE1xx Degree Project in Chemistry with Master's Degree, 30, 45 or 60 ECTS.
Enrollment to the mandatory courses is guaranteed for all students who are admitted to the master's programme.

Optional courses
Students can apply and be admitted to optional courses through open competition. Credits obtained from optional courses, taken at other universities, can be transferred and included in the master's degree.

Course order of the programme
The recommended course order is given below.

Year 1
5KE174 Biophysical-Chemical Concepts, 15 ECTS
5KE175 Advanced Experimental Tools in Chemistry, 15 ECTS
5KE053 Chemometrics, 7.5 ECTS
5KE176 Computational chemistry, 7.5 ECTS

Year 2
Optional courses 0-30 ECTS
Degree project 30-60 ECTS

A master's degree in chemistry may have the following specializations:
Medicinal chemistry, Environmental chemistry or Biochemistry.
The specialization is determined by the choice of the free courses (at least 15 ECTS) and the field of the degree project.

Degree project / independent work
A degree project within the main area of Chemistry is included in the programme and can be started when the prerequisites in the syllabus are met. In the thesis work, which comprises 30, 45 or 60 ECTS, the student shall apply the knowledge acquired during the study period. The work must deal with a specialization in the field of chemistry. The work shall be reported in English, both orally and in a written "Master's thesis" report/essay. A part of the requirement in the degree project is also to act as opponent on a degree project presented by another master's student. The degree project is carried out individually.

Deferment of studies

Deferred enrolment can be granted if there are special reasons. Examples of special reasons are illness, pregnancy, childcare or other care responsibilities, etc. Application for this is done by writing at the Student Centrum.

A negative decision on postponement with the start of studies can be appealed to the Board of Appeal for Higher Education.

Approved leave from studies

A negative decision to resume studies after a study break can be appealed to the Board of Appeal for Higher Education.

More information:


Students who decide to interrupt the program should inform the programme study councilor about their decision.

More information: