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Chemistry - Mathematical and Computational Chemistry

Entry 2018: BBC / 120 UCAS points
Duration: 4 years
Attendance mode: Full-time
Award: MChem
UCAS code: F1GL
Placement: Placement year not available
Suitable for international students
Faculty of Life Sciences
Apply Prospectus downloads


Computational chemistry is the application of computer based methods to chemical problems. This ranges from designing new molecules for drug applications to explaining the mechanisms of reactions and properties by consideration of atomic and molecular structure.

The increasing role for computational chemistry in the modern chemistry and engineering sectors requires qualified candidates that have strong understanding of both chemistry and computational principles. This new programme has been designed to provide these skills, with a curriculum that integrates chemical and computational aspects, and introduces core concepts of atomic and molecular structure, reactivity and spectroscopy from theoretical, practical and computational viewpoints.

You’ll develop skills in:

  • software development and implementation
  • mathematical foundations of common computational methodologies
  • the use of industrial standard software packages to investigate chemical problems including solid-state materials, biological molecules, chemical reactions and to predict spectra
  • selecting suitable types of calculation to solve chemical problems
  • presenting reasoned arguments based on computational results to explain experimental findings
  • communicating chemical and computational ideas to different groups

You will be taught by leading research scientists in these fields, and on graduation you’ll have the skills you need to make an impact in a variety of scientific fields.

MChem Chemistry – Mathematical and Computational Chemistry is the only specialised undergraduate programme in computational chemistry in England and Wales.

Professional Accreditation/Recognition

Students can apply for membership of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)

Why Bradford?

MChem Chemistry – Mathematical and Computational Chemistry is the only specialised undergraduate programme in computational chemistry in England and Wales.

Chemistry programmes at the University of Bradford are designed around the premise of making knowledge work.

Our degrees will give you a solid background in the chemical sciences, but allow you to focus on the application of chemistry in specific areas of modern chemistry.

These areas have been chosen to reflect the main employment destinations for 21st century chemistry graduates:

  • Materials Chemistry
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Medicinal Chemistry
  • Computational Chemistry

Entry requirements

Typical offer: BBC / 120 UCAS points

A levels:

B in Chemistry and Mathematics required.


The modules for this course can be found in the latest programme specification.

First year

Core Chemistry in the traditional inorganic, physical and organic fields shared with the other MChem Chemistry students.

Building the necessary mathematical understanding for future modules and the development of basic practical chemical laboratory skills and computer programming.

Undertaking skills development in group working and presentation.
Second year

Building chemical knowledge in inorganic, physical, organic and practical laboratory skills.

Introduction to core computational chemistry topics (energy calculations, conformational searching, quantum mechanical methods).

Building programming skills and use of standard computational chemistry software.

Development of skills profiling and CV writing.

Third year

Specialised chemistry teaching in materials, analytical and biological chemistry, while computational chemistry develops a greater integration between experimental and computational studies with a strong focus on industrial relevant topics.

You will have a regular seminar series with industrial chemists to experience the applications and undertake research work both individually and in groups. You will experience technical and HR type interviews to develop your interview skills and improve your employability.

Fourth year

A final module on advanced concepts in computational chemistry (solution modelling, MP2 methods, metadynamics).

You will undertake an independent research project supported by selection of specialised modules in leading research topics of the academic staff at Bradford.

Reading lists

All reading lists can be found here.

Learning activities and assessment

The programme utilises a range of learning activities - from lectures and tutorials to develop understanding of core concepts, to practical computational workshops where the ideas are applied through self-developed code or by the use of common software packages used in leading research group and chemical industries.

Assessment is varied, comprising examinations, presentations, laboratory reports, creation of electronic portfolios and a final independent research project.

Study Abroad

All of our programmes offer the opportunity to study abroad at an international partner institution.

Career support and prospects

Career support

We have a commitment to strong pastoral care for all of our students, which includes a Personal Tutor for all students, regular contact hours for tutor groups and our supportive student service teams who are always ready to help with any questions and provide the advice that you need.

In addition to standard study support through taught sessions, our Virtual Learning Environment allows students to access resources, participate in group work and submit work from anywhere in the world 24/7.

University central services are rich with support teams to assist students with every aspect of their journey through our degree programmes. From our Career and Employability Service, through our strong Students' Union, to our professional and efficient Student Finance team, there are always friendly faces ready to support you and provide you with the answers that you need.

Career prospects

The need for highly skilled workers within the fields of mathematical and computational chemistry has been recognised across the sector. In 2015, a report from the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry highlighted significant concerns about the quantity and quality of candidates currently available in the mathematical and computational chemistry fields .

Chemists are attractive to employers both for the skills that they offer directly related to their specialism, and for the professional skills that they have developed through study of the discipline. The range of careers available to chemists is vast – take a look at the Royal Society of Chemistry careers guide to get some ideas.

Find out what graduates from our 2015 cohort are now doing.

Watch MChem graduate Freya Leask's graduation diary from December 2015:


Bradford’s computational chemistry research group have worldwide research impact within the fields of solid-state and biological chemistry. Bradford teams are the most successful contributors to the regular world-wide blind test of crystal structure prediction run by the Cambridge Crystallography Data Centre (CCDC).

As a student here you will be directly involved in the rapidly developing research fields in these areas.


Our multi-million pound Centre for Chemical and Structural Analysis houses excellent analytical instrumentation which you will use to gain genuine practical experience of research apparatus. You will use NMR, IR, Raman, Mass Spectrometry, HPLC and GC, and X-ray diffraction instruments throughout your course.

How do I find out more?

Got a question?

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This is the current course information. Modules and course details may change, subject to the University's programme approval, monitoring and review procedures. The University reserves the right to alter or withdraw courses, services and facilities as described on our website without notice and to amend Ordinances, Regulations, fees and charges at any time. Students should enquire as to the up-to-date position when applying for their course of study.