Chemistry at The University of Edinburgh - UCAS

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Course summary

Our EaStCHEM Joint Research School was formed by the Universities of Edinburgh and St Andrews in 2004 to combine the research activities of two of Scotland’s leading schools of chemistry. EaStCHEM now provides the largest chemistry research unit in the UK. In the Research Excellence Framework (REF 2021), EaStCHEM was one of only three chemistry units to achieve a 100% “world-leading” score for our research environment. This result rewards our: provision of state-of-the-art facilities recruitment of high-quality academic, research and professional services staff collaboration across disciplines and with industry partners support for career development nurturing of talent REF 2021 also assessed >99% of our research outputs as either “world-leading” or “internationally excellent” and 100% of the economic, social and environmental benefit in our impact case studies to be “outstanding” or “very considerable”. In addition to gaining research skills, making friends, meeting eminent researchers and being part of the research community, a research degree will help you to develop invaluable transferable skills which you can apply to academic life or a variety of professions outside of academia. The Chemistry/Biology Interface This is a broad area, with particular strengths in the areas of:

  • protein structure and function
  • mechanistic enzymology
  • proteomics
  • peptide and protein synthesis
  • protein folding
  • recombinant and synthetic DNA methodology
  • biologically targeted synthesis
  • the application of high throughput and combinatorial approaches
We also focus on biophysical chemistry, the development and application of physicochemical techniques to biological systems. This includes mass spectrometry, advanced spectroscopy and microscopy, as applied to proteins, enzymes, DNA, membranes and biosensors. Experimental & Theoretical Chemical Physics This is the fundamental study of molecular properties and processes. Areas of expertise include:
  • probing molecular structure in the gas phase, clusters and nanoparticles
  • the development and application of physicochemical techniques such as mass spectoscropy to molecular systems
  • the EaStCHEM surface science group, who study complex molecules on surfaces, probing the structure property-relationships employed in heterogeneous catalysis
A major feature is in Silico Scotland, a world-class research computing facility. Synthesis This research area encompasses the synthesis and characterisation of organic and inorganic compounds, including those with application in:
  • homogeneous catalysis
  • nanotechnology
  • coordination chemistry
  • ligand design and supramolecular chemistry
  • asymmetric catalysis
  • heterocyclic chemistry
  • the development of synthetic methods and strategies leading to the synthesis of biologically important molecules (including drug discovery)
The development of innovative synthetic and characterisation methodologies (particularly in structural chemistry) is a key feature, and we specialise in structural chemistry at extremely high pressures. Materials Chemistry The EaStCHEM Materials group is one of the largest in the UK. Areas of strength include the design, synthesis and characterisation of functional (for example magnetic, superconducting and electronic) materials, such as:
  • strongly correlated electronic materials
  • battery and fuel cell materials and devices
  • porous solids
  • fundamental and applied electrochemistry polymer microarray technologies
  • technique development for materials and nanomaterials analysis


See our website for detailed programme information.

Professional bodies

Professionally accredited courses provide industry-wide recognition of the quality of your qualification.

  • Chemistry, Royal Society of

How to apply

International applicants

This course has a subject classification which requires students whose nationality is outside the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland to have an ATAS certificate, irrespective of country of residence at the point of application.

Further information can be found on the UK Government's website:

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for individual programmes vary, so please check the details for the specific programme you wish to apply for on our website. You will also need to meet the University’s language requirements.

Fees and funding

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Chemistry at The University of Edinburgh - UCAS