Undergraduate News

Department of Chemistry University of Oxford

Welcome to the news listings for the Chemistry Undergraduate students.

The purpose of these pages is to share information that may be of interest to all Undergraduate students. 

Just a week since applications opened for the TBL 2019 and we're thrilled to say more than half of the places available are now taken! Don't wait another week if you really want to make it to the most complete and broad in scope course that will give you the knowledge and skills to tackle the most pressing global challenges of the recent era!

For further details, please see HERE






Wednesday 20th March 2019, at 11:30am

Main Seminar Room, Department of Biochemistry


Prof. Daniel Panne (University of Leicester)

“Structural Insights into signalling towards chromatin”

All welcome.
Nasmyth Group

Innovative business experience programmes for Oxford students and researchers – Call for projects

Have you got a challenge or idea that you would like to explore further? Would you like an external perspective on a business opportunity?

We may be able to help.  

Every year we support over 60 organisations through our innovative and unique work experience programmes for Oxford students and Postgraduate researchers.    Participants work in small teams to address a strategic issue or opportunity for our client organisations over 2-3 months.    

We do not charge our clients. The participants volunteer for our programmes and use the experience to boost their commercial awareness and employability skills.

 Our clients say that they:   

•        Benefit from the enthusiasm, creativity and fresh ideas that our student teams bring to a challenge

•        Enjoy sharing their expertise and knowledge about their industry with eager students and researchers

•        Get real value from the support.

Clients include businesses (big and small), charities, community organisations, City and County Council departments, arts and cultural institutions. Previous client’s projects have included work on marketing, fundraising, user experience, new product feasibility and community engagement.

A good project will have some element of research and a requirement for the team to make recommendations on the right strategy for you to take forward. But most of all, it must be important to you….we like our teams to make a real impact!

We are looking for projects for April to June. If you have a project idea and would like a client form, we’d love to hear from you, so please either respond to this email ( tsc@careers.ox.ac.uk ) or call us on 01865 274663 if you would like to discuss it further.

The deadline for projects for our next run of programmes is in early April.

Debra Popperwell
The Careers Service, University of Oxford
56 Banbury Road, Oxford, OX2 6PA


Every year, the Environmental Change Institute, in collaboration with the School of Geography and the Environment of the University of Oxford organises the Training Better Leaders course, an annual 3 days course open to all students at Oxford University who want to get a better understanding of the global environmental sustainability scene. This year the TBL will take place 24 – 26 April. There are only 60 places available, and we’re looking to recruit a wide range of backgrounds and interests in sustainability.

For further details, please see HERE


Take your Science to the Cowley Road Carnival Science Zone - Space is the Place (7 July 2019)

The Carnival is seeking expressions of interest for stalls in the Science Zone.
The theme is 'Space is the Place', which could be interpreted around activities to do with outer space. Or it could be any research or topic related to any sort of space - the space between atoms, the space within a cell, the perception of our environments, green spaces, purple spaces - if you can imagine it, it fits.




This opportunity is open to 3rd year undergraduates.


Royal Society Industry Fellowship Summer Project available. 

Tailored cathode nanomaterials for application in Li-air battery technologies

The project forms an integral part of the general aims of the RSIF associated with Formula E challenges exploiting tailored nanomaterials for application in Li-air battery technologies.

It will draw on the findings and materials produced by previous RSIF summer students by focusing on exploiting nanomaterials developed in-house using electrophoretic techniques and freeze-casting methods with tailored electrical and mechanical properties as gas diffusion electrodes in Li-air batteries.

The porosity, thickness and surface chemistry of these materials can be tailored by methods developed in-house and hierarchical structures consisting of one or more of these materials with different hydrophobicity/hydrophilicity can be developed.

The student will modify the surface chemistry of the these cathodes in order to tailor their wettability, optimise their porosity to promote Li2O2 -formation in solution, enhance oxygen mass transport, and prevent electrolyte leakage. Time permitting, routes to monitoring and avoiding passivation through Li2O2 -deposition on the cathode will be investigated.

Frequent meetings with the Industry partner are in place to ensure a lively exchange between my research laboratory, the summer student, and the industry partner. The summer student will have the opportunity to work closely with colleagues of the Formula E team at WAE and will be co-supervised by Steve Newbury, who recently has been awarded a RAEng Visiting Professorship in the Department of Materials. The student will receive daily supervision from a DPhil student working on this project.

A project report will be required at the end of the project and the student is expected to prepare and present a research poster (Support will be provided when preparing these) at the Industry Fellows networking event in London on 22 November 2019. Hotels and travel expenses to the event at the Royal Society will be covered.

The placement will run for a minimum of 8 weeks and there will be opportunities to interact with the industry partner. The summer studentship award will start during the summer holiday (outside of term time) for the University institution where the student is enrolled.  A fixed stipend will be paid towards living expenses. Applicants should send a CV (2 pages max.) and a statement focusing on why they are interested in the industry project (1 page max) to Professor Nicole Grobert (nicole.grobert@materials.ox.ac.uk)

CV Deadline  15 March 2019 the latest.



Full Details:  www.ecofs.org

An opportunity to apply your classroom & textbook learning while immersed in a spectacular & transformative educational setting!

Caribbean Ecosystem Field Studies

* Study, snorkel & SCUBA dive on the Caribbean coral reef of Mexico *

    May 21 - June 10, 2019

Colorado Ecosystem Field Studies  

* Study, camp, & hike in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado *

   July 26 - August 15, 2019

  • Gain valuable career skills in hands-on scientific field research
  • Earn 3 undergraduate academic transfer credits over summer-break
  • Join a diverse & exciting group of college students for an experiential
    learning experience of a lifetime!

For all course information visit the website:  EcoFS.org

Open to students from all universities & majors
Accredited by the University of Montana, Environmental Studies Program ENST 391- for 3 undergraduate semester transfer credits

Direct questions to Professor Steve Johnson, EcoFS Director at steve@EcoFS.org


Please note this opportunity is aimed at 3rd year students

Residential Chemistry Training Experience 2019

This year we shall be running our Residential Chemistry Training Experience from Sunday 8th – Friday 13th September 2019.

This fully funded week gives participants an excellent opportunity to find out what the chemist does in the pharmaceutical industry.

They spend at least two days in a laboratory receiving personalised tuition from one of our graduate chemists and they also receive training in cv writing, interviewing, and compiling/delivering presentations.

For further details please see HERE, application is form HERE

Application deadline - 13 June 2019


Could you design a new periodic table?

2019 is the International Year of the Periodic Table, one of the most significant achievements in science and a unique tool that enables scientists to predict the properties of matter on Earth and in the universe.  Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev published his first periodic table of the elements 150 years ago, arranging the elements in order of increasing atomic mass and leaving gaps for those yet to be discovered.  Significant contributions to the development of the Periodic Table were made by Oxford scientists Henry Moseley, who arranged the elements in order of increasing atomic number, and Frederick Soddy, who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1921 for his contributions to the chemistry of radioactive substances, and his investigations into the origin and nature of isotopes.

We want to celebrate this year in the Department’s publications, website and social media and would like your help!  Could you come up with a creative interpretation of the periodic table?  This could be in the form of a design, illustration or 3D model in any media.  For inspiration you might like to look at the amazing database of periodic tables here, or this design by scientists at St Andrews, not to mention the Department’s very own knitted periodic table!

Please send a picture of your interpretation to chemistry-news@chem.ox.ac.uk and we will be in touch.  Thank you!

Susan Davis
Alumni Relations and Communications Manager, Department of Chemistry


This opportunity is most suitable for 2nd and 3rd Year students

Undergraduate Research Bursaries

The RSC offers a range of summer research bursaries that may be of interest. For further details see HERE

The application deadline is 25th February 2019