MSc Chemical Process Research and Development

University of Leeds, School of Chemistry

Program Description

MSc Chemical Process Research and Development

University of Leeds, School of Chemistry

This course aims to provide students from a Chemistry, Chemical Engineering or related science and engineering background, with an advanced knowledge of chemical process research and development.

The course is centred in the Institute of Process Research and Development (iPRD), a key interdisciplinary institute, which links the School of Chemistry and School of Chemical and Process Engineering at the University of Leeds.

In keeping with iPRD's emphasis, the entire course is industrially relevant, and much of it is industrially led, including extensive use of seminars and workshops by industrial speakers.

A major part of the MSc course is an extensive research project which will normally be jointly supervised by a chemist and a chemical engineer. Many research projects are industrially sponsored and some can be carried out in industrial laboratories when advantageous to do so.

The excellent facilities, which include recently commissioned large scale 20 and 50 litre reaction systems and the range of expertise at Leeds means that students will be able to contribute to research at the cutting edge of process technology, in industrially relevant areas, in some cases, with significant industrial involvement.

Course Description

Core material will cover key techniques and methodology used in process technology, and will be reinforced through deductive problem solving, and student led activities (e.g. interdisciplinary design project involving small group working between chemists and chemical engineers).

This approach will enable students to exploit their diverse range of skills, to appreciate the opportunities and limitations of current process technology, and to be prepared for the necessarily inquisitive nature of research.

Throughout the course extensive exposure to industrial concepts, and input from external industrial speakers, will exemplify the importance and practical applications of the field.

The initial project report that you produce will require you to appreciate the background to a research problem, to formulate ideas, to propose a programme of research, and to propose the approach best suited to the underlying research problem. The work will be conducted in the vigorous interdisciplinary research atmosphere fostered by the range of process technology research being carried out in Leeds, and will be written up in an extensive high level report, and presented orally in an internal research conference at the end of the year.

Course Structure

All students study core material, beginning with an initial introduction to Process Chemistry and Chemical Technology, and then divide into three streams, depending on background, to cover chemistry and chemical engineering at a range of levels.

All students then study advanced core modules, which lead on to an extensive research project.

The modular nature of the course allows students from differing backgrounds to tailor the course to their own needs, allowing those with a knowledge of chemistry to focus on more advanced chemical aspects of process development and develop a strong appreciation of chemical engineering principles, whilst students with a background in chemical engineering can concentrate on advanced engineering aspects and develop a strong appreciation of chemistry.

Students from more diverse backgrounds (e.g. pharmacy, forensic science, materials science, physics, biochemistry) will have the opportunity to study broader aspects of both chemistry and chemical engineering but would not be expected to study at the advanced levels of students with specialist chemistry or chemical engineering knowledge.

Teaching is by lectures, practical classes, tutorials, seminars and supervised research projects. Extensive use is made of IT and a wide range of materials is available to enable students to study at their own pace and in their own time to enhance and extend the material taught formally.

Assessment is based on course work, research project performance and written exams which take place at the end of the semester in which the module is taught.

Career Options

The industrial focus of the course and the shortage of suitably qualified postgraduate students, with experience at the chemical - chemical engineering interface, ensures excellent career prospects for successful graduates and also provides a good route for progression onto further postgraduate study at PhD level.

Career opportunities can be found in research, technical support and production management roles, within the chemical manufacturing industry, in particular fine chemicals, dyestuffs, agrochemicals and pharmaceuticals. The course also provides a good route for progression onto further postgraduate study at PhD level.


The School of Chemistry offers up to 10 partial-fee Dean’s International Excellence Scholarships worth £3,000 each. These awards are open to international candidates who have been accepted for admission on this full-time MSc programme, and who are eligible to pay tuition fees at the full international rate. Eligible applicants will automatically be considered for these awards at the time of application, so are not required to complete an application form.

Entry Requirements

A first or an upper second class honours degree or equivalent in Chemistry, Biochemistry, or a related subject. The Programme Manager will also be looking for evidence of the skills developed within your honours degree.

If English is not your first language, you may require a language qualification to show that your English is of a high enough standard to meet the demands of your course. The University accepts IELTS, TOEFL or PTE qualifications with the following minimum scores:

  • IELTS 6.5 with at least 6.0 in all components;
  • IBT TOEFL score (internet-based test) of at least 92 overall with at least 21 in listening, 21 in reading, 23 in speaking, and 22 in writing
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) academic score of 64 with at least 60 in all components.
This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated April 20, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
12 months
Full time
Start date Sept. 2017
United Kingdom Leeds, England
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Duration 12 months
Price - See School website