Taught course

Our unique training programme is spread over four years, and comprises six months of taught courses taken by the whole cohort in the first half of the first year, followed by a substantive research project.

It provides a broad training across inorganic synthesis at different length scales (molecular, nano-scale and extended solids) together with in-depth research-based training in one area. Taught courses feature integrated industry/academic components for a holistic understanding of fundamental principles and the delivery of a chemical product. Involvement of ten diverse industrial partners allows for training that is relevant to a range of different business sectors and sizes.

Training modules involve lectures, problem classes, tutorials, site visits and advanced practical components. All modules involve some aspect of formal assessment, including written reports, problem solving, and group and individual presentations. Key aspects of the taught course are highlighted below.

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I have really enjoyed learning about a broad spectrum of challenges and techniques in inorganic chemistry from both in-lab and industrial perspectives. It helps you to examine problems from different angles and you meet a lot of inspiring people who are passionate about their fields.
Kitty Clarke (2022 cohort)
  • Induction

Two weeks of induction exercises and events to welcome the cohort of students to the programme.

  • Introductory Modules

Three introductory modules covering molecular, nano-scale and extended materials chemistry, designed to bring all members of the cohort up to the same level of mastery.

  • Core Modules

Eight core integrated technical modules designed to give a holistic understanding of key topics in inorganic synthesis, from fundamental principles, through the scale-up and process engineering required to manufacture a product.

  • Advanced Option Modules

Four advanced option modules covering advanced topics in the application of inorganic synthesis to manufacturing. Students will be able to choose modules in year 1 with additional modules being taken in years 2-4.

  • Advanced Laboratory Course

An advanced laboratory course featuring extended investigations covering molecular, nano-scale and extended materials chemistry, together with a week-long project looking at scale up and chemical engineering.

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  • Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI)

A module covering issues relating to responsible research and innovation (RRI) in academic, publishing and innovation/corporate contexts. It will cover essential concepts underpinning RRI, and the responsibilities of scientists and industry both to end-users and to society.

  • Professional Skills Development

Professional skills training will deliver the key skills necessary to conduct and present research. It will run throughout the OxICFM CDT programme and exploit courses delivered by the University’s Mathematics, Physics and Life Sciences Division (MPLS) Graduate School.

  • Summer school

An annual summer school encompassing research presentations and training in outreach and public engagement.

I chose the CDT course as its strong focus on skills and knowledge development across a broad scope of inorganic chemistry would give me a broader base before beginning my research project. The interdisciplinary nature of the CDT taught course helped me to explore areas of chemistry I was less familiar with and to reflect on how they could influence my own research.
Jamie Wilmore (2019 cohort)
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