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Master's program in organic chemistry

The master’s programme in organic chemistry examines how to identify and synthesize small carbon-based molecules and describe how they interact in complex biological systems.

Gud kollar

Small carbon based molecules are the building blocks of life and also for many modern materials like pharmaceuticals, plastics and biofuels.

A degree in organic chemistry could lead to uncovering and understanding pollution, developing new drugs, fuels or foods or even discovering new, more sustainable materials in the private, public or academic sectors.

Many students use our master’s programme as a stepping stone to a PhD in chemistry. The master’s in organic chemistry teaches you to become a researcher.

A generous amount of laboratory time ensures that you can actually practice all of the theory you learn – real science for the real world. You will work closely with leading researchers in analytical and synthetic organic chemistry, being coached in small groups with low teacher-student ratios.

You will be surrounded by the world’s top chemists, not only some of the people who chose the Nobel winners but even attending the Nobel lectures of the prize winners themselves.

  • Programme overview

    The program is 120 ECTS.

    Depending on your background in organic chemistry you will be adviced to follow one of the two suggested tracks, normal track and advanced track.

    The program consists of two or three mandatory courses depending on what track you are on, a total of 30-45 ECTS and an independent project of at least 45 ECTS.

    You will also be able to take university level electives. A maximum of 15 ECTS on first level are allowed in your degree. Perhaps study a different branch of chemistry to become interdisciplinary. Some of the most important discoveries are happening where multiple disciplines meet, like where organic chemistry meets biology, biochemistry or quantum chemistry.

     

    Year 1

    Fall semester, normal track

    If you have 40 ECTS organic chemistry or less or/and limited laboratory experience,  we suggest the follwing study plan.

    Organic chemistry III, reactivity and structure 15 ECTS ) (mandatory)

    followed by

    Organometallic chemistry 15 ECTS (mandatory)

    If you click on the courses you will be taken to the course pages.

    Fall semester, advanced track

    If you have taken more than 40 ECTS organic chemistry and/or have very extensive laboratory expererience we suggest the follwing study plan.

    Advanced organic chemistry, 15 ECTS (mandatory)

    followed by

    Organometallic chemistry 15 ECTS (mandatory)

    Spring semester, both tracks

    30 ECTS elective courses.

    Year 2

    Normal track

    Advanced organic chemistry, 15 ECTS (mandatory)

    followed by 45 ECTS degree project (mandatory).

    Advanced track

    15 ECTS elective courses and 45 ECTS degree project (mandatory).

    or

    60 ECTS degree project (mandatory).

     

     

    Independent project

    The masters program in organic chemistry contains an independent project of a minimum of 45 ECTS.

    In order to start working on your independent project you will have to have passed the two mandatory course.

  • How to apply

    You apply for the program through universityadmissions.se

    Next application round will be starting October 15th 2021.

    Selection process

    Additional eligibility criteria

    Relevance of previous studies in relation to the programme and motivation letter.

    As part of the application for our Master's programme you will be asked to provide a  motivation letter. The motivation letter is an important selection criteria and must be uploaded together with your application at the university admissions site.

    Please answer the follwing questions, and add the document to your application on university admissions. We expect maximum one A4 page.

    • Your full name
    • E-mail address
    • The name of the masters programme you are applying to
    • A list of completed courses, including number of credits, which count toward meeting the specific eligibility requirements for the program (please include courses not completed as well)
    • Relevant experience, such as research, employment, volunteering that has contributed to experience
    • What inspired you to apply to this particular program?
    • Lab experience
    • Why are you a good candidate?
    • What do you hope to achieve with your degree?
    • What research questions interest you and how do they relate to the ongoing research at Stockholm University?

    Upload this letter with your application on to universityadmissions.se

     

  • Meet us

    Meet our students

    Aitor, PhD student in organic chemsitry

    My name is Aitor and I am a 29 years old PhD student at the Organic Department at Stockholm University. Let me tell you a bit about myself and how I ended up at this Department.

    Aitor

    My name is Aitor and I am a 29 years old PhD student at the Organic Department at Stockholm University. Let me tell you a bit about myself and how I ended up at this Department.

    I jumped into the Chemistry world around 12 years ago form now, when I enrolled in a 5-year Degree in Chemistry at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain (2007-2012). During that time I studied all the different fields in Chemistry, what allowed me to have preference for some of them over others. I personally enjoyed Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry the most and a desire of expanding my knowledge and continuing with further studies started to grow in me.

    It was when I finished my Degree that, due to difficulties finding scholarships and fully funded programs in my home country, I decided to do a more practical Masters Degree in Chemical Engineering, with the aim of finding a job right afterwards. Everything was as planned and everything seemed to be sorted out, but just after 6 months working in a Chemical Company, and realising that that lifestyle was not made for me, I decided to take a break and improve my English skills, hoping that it would help in the near future apply for further studies abroad.

    Floorball and the Nobel Prize
    After spending two years in Sydney, Australia, I felt ready and started searching around (online) for some programmes in different universities in Europe. I have to say that thanks to the sport I have been practising my whole life (floorball, or innebandy in Swedish) I had had the chance to get to know quite a few nordic people, and had some close Swedish friends. Their way of thinking, behaving and caring about others always kept my attention, so I wondered, could this be my last chance to move there and get to know a bit more about the Nordic culture? So I started looking for good programmes in Chemistry in Finland, Sweden, Norway and Denmark. After making a large list of possible destinations, I proceeded to rank them, based on their reputation and location.

    As you may know, Stockholm is commonly known for the Nobel Prize Awards in Science (Chemistry), which pushed this city to the top of my ranking list. After checking the different research groups and Professors at the Department of Organic Chemistry (with very good reputation, being among the world´s top 100 universities), I decided to give it a try and apply for the Masters Programme in Organic Chemistry, at Stockholm University. I was accepted and I did not think about it twice, I moved straight away back from Sydney to start this exciting Programme in September 2016 with the aim of finishing it and being eligible for a PhD position. 

    Project work and PhD studies
    The first course I read as part of the Masters Programme was Advanced Organic Synthesis, and although each student had a different background, the Professors managed to make every student feel comfortable and cared for. This helped each and every of us keep motivation for the following courses. Although the Masters Programme is planned to take two full years (a first year of theory and a second and last year of practical project work), after reading my second course, Organometallic Chemistry, I decided to apply for the project work in Professor Belén Martín-Matute´s research group. I was accepted to do a 1-year project group in the topic "Bifunctional NHC-Ir(III) complexes for catalysis". I read the rest of the theoretical courses while doing the project, which I defended in October 2017. I am very excited to say that right after completion of the Master’s Degree, I applied for a PhD vacancy in the same research group, to continue with the research I had been performing. Happily, I was offered the place and started my PhD studies 😊.

    After one year, the results that I started working on when I came as a Master student have been further developed and got published, being now part of my PhD thesis. I am very happy to continue with my formation in this amazing group, and continuously getting to know new interesting people and very well known Professors in the field. Doing the PhD at this department also provides me the opportunity to attend the Nobel Laureates lectures every year, and in some cases, have short conversations with them! Something I could have never think of years ago.

    Nothing better than a "fika"
    There are still years of hard work and teaching in order to finish my PhD, but the motivation increases every day thanks to everyone at the Department (specially to Prof. Belén Martín -Matute and the whole research group), who help you feel welcome and confortable. There is nothing better than a "fika break" (Swedish coffee break) with nice people when busy times come! I fully recommend it!!

    "I was assigned to work on a very exciting project"

    Erika Linde

    My name is Erika and I am a PhD student at the department of Organic Chemistry at Stockholm University. I started studying chemistry towards a Bachelor’s at Stockholm University.

    During these 3 years I was allowed to explore various chemistry fields, however organic chemistry quickly became my main interest. I received my Bachelor’s degree after performing my diploma work at the department of Organic Chemistry. Since I truly enjoyed the work and the department, I decided to expand my knowledge in this field by applying for the Master’s Programme.   

    Both theoretical and practical skills
    The first semester of the Master’s Programme I took the courses Advanced Organic Synthesis and Organometallic Chemistry. These courses provided me with both theoretical and practical skills that have been highly relevant during the rest of my education. The second semester I proceeded by taking Bioorganic Structural Analysis to improve my NMR knowledge, meanwhile taking the course Physical Organic Chemistry in parallel. Half way through the second semester I could start my diploma work at the department to conduct my 60 ECTS master’s thesis. I was assigned to work on a very exciting project, which lead to a publication even before I had finished the thesis. Due to the flexibility of this Master’s programme, I could receive my Master’s degree after 1.5 years instead of the intended 2 years by taking courses and performing the diploma work in parallel. 

    PhD position at the department
    Upon completing my degree, my main aspiration was to apply for a PhD position at the department. Happily, I was offered a position in the research group where I conducted my diploma work and could start my doctoral studies directly after finishing the thesis. I can fully recommend the Master’s Programme for anyone interested in organic chemistry. Studying at the department will give you a great opportunity to learn from well-known professors and to follow the latest advancements in this field. Furthermore, the theoretical knowledge and research experience I acquired during my master’s studies have provided me with a solid foundation for my current PhD studies. 

    Best of luck! 

  • Career opportunities

    A degree in organic chemistry could lead to uncovering and understanding pollution, developing new drugs, fuels or foods or even discovering new, more sustainable materials in the private, public or academic sectors.

    Many students use our master’s programme as a stepping stone to a PhD in chemistry.

  • Contact

    Joseph Sven Malcolm Samec

    Professor

    Epost: joseph.samec@su.se

    Chemistry Section & Student Affairs Office