Chemical Engineering

Key information

Duration: 1 year full-time
Start date: September 2020
Location: South Kensington
ECTS: 90 credits

Introducing the Institute for Molecular Science and Engineering

Watch our video about our MRes Molecular Science and Engineering
Watch webinar: What is Molecular Science and Engineering?Apply now


Specialists in broad aspects of molecular science and engineering are increasingly in demand. Industries and research agencies need skilled scientists and engineers to work effectively and seamlessly together in order to tackle the challenges they face.

The Institute for Molecular Science and Engineering has launched a unique Master's of Research to train students in interdisciplinary collaborative research in this emerging and exciting field.

Rapid progress in our understanding of molecular science now allows us to make, measure and model materials with unprecedented accuracy. This presents a great opportunity to engineer better materials and molecular systems in response to the grand challenges faced by society.

This one-year full-time MRes course provides you with a systematic understanding of Molecular Science and Engineering and a critical awareness of the current challenges and research in the area.

The MRes is aimed at a broad intake of graduates from science and engineering backgrounds, providing advanced integration skills, as well as an understanding of multiple scales, from molecular interactions to whole systems.

Collaboration is embedded in the course through integrated coursework and extended research projects: you undertake industrial placements to gain a high-level perspective of the research challenge and its context.

This is followed by a three-month research project at Imperial, with close supervision by two academics from different departments.


Our MRes in Molecular Science and Engineering is aimed at a broad intake of exceptional graduates from science and engineering backgrounds who are excited to pursue collaborative, trans-disciplinary research of an applied nature. It will equip you the with fundamental and applied skills for a PhD or career in industry.


Modules shown are for the current academic year and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.

Please note that the curriculum of this course is currently being reviewed as part of a College-wide process to introduce a standardised modular structure. As a result, the content and assessment structures of this course may change for your year of entry. We therefore recommend that you check this course page before finalising your application and after submitting it as we will aim to update this page as soon as any changes are ratified by the College.

Find out more about the limited circumstances in which we may need to make changes to or in relation to our courses, the type of changes we may make and how we will tell you about changes we have made.


Introductory components

These components ensure a broad skill-set for the integrated curriculum.

  • Fundamentals of Molecular Engineering
  • Underpinning Molecular Science

Advanced core modules

  • Measuring – Analysis and Characterisation
  • Making – Synthesis of Polymeric Systems
  • Manufacturing Processes
  • Design of Molecular Systems
  • Multiscale Modelling – Understanding, Visualising, and Predicting

Research projects

The research projects form the heart of the MRes programme. Each project has two parts: an integrated collaborative industrial placement (3 months), and continuation of this project in research labs at Imperial College. The projects are jointly supervised by two Imperial academics from different disciplines, and an industrial partner.

Teaching and assessment


  • Group exercises
  • Guided practical classes and laboratory work
  • Individual research projects
  • Lectures
  • On-line groups/discussions
  • On-line lecture materials
  • Presentations
  • Research project (which may be co-supervised with industry partners)
  • Tutorials


  • Design brief
  • Individual oral presentations
  • Laboratory assessments
  • Literature review and project proposal
  • Manufacturing project
  • Mini projects
  • Poster presentation
  • Problem sheets
  • Progress reports
  • Research article
  • Written examinations

Course timetable

You will receive joining instructions before the start of term. You should be available to join the course from the first day of the academic year (the first Monday in October).

Your timetable will be accessible online – you will receive a link to this before the course starts. Core teaching hours are 96, Monday to Friday.

Please note that as this is a postgraduate degree, the course programme continues through undergraduate holidays. This is a 12 month course, running from the beginning of October until the end of September.

Professional skills development programme

  • Time Management
  • Introduction to Science Communication
  • Presentation Skills
  • Raising Your Profile as a Researcher
  • Writing: Literature Review
  • Developing Your Career Through Networking
  • Public Speaking
  • Poster Presentations 

Entry requirements

We welcome students from all over the world and consider all applicants on an individual basis.


Minimum academic requirement

Our minimum requirement is a 2.1 degree in engineering or physical science.

International qualifications

We also accept a wide variety of international qualifications.

The academic requirement above is for applicants who hold or who are working towards a UK qualification.

For guidance see our Country Index though please note that the standards listed here are the minimum for entry to the College, and not specifically this Department.

If you have any questions about admissions and the standard required for the qualification you hold or are currently studying then please contact the relevant admissions team.

English language requirement (all applicants)

All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.

For admission to this course, you must achieve the standard College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for postgraduate applicants.

Additional information

The focus of this course is the interaction between molecular science and engineering. As such, applicants are expected to have a degree in an engineering subject (e.g. Chemical Engineering, Bioengineering, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering) or physical science degree (e.g. Chemistry, Physics, Materials Science) or life sciences degree with a  good competency in mathematics.

Maths covered during an undergraduate degree in physical science or engineering would normally be sufficient.  If you are unsure whether your degree includes a suitable grounding in mathematics, please contact the Course Director Dr Niall Mac Dowell or Associate Director Dr Jerry Heng.

How to apply

How to apply

Making an application

All applicants must apply online.

For full details on the online application process, please visit the admissions website.

You can submit one application form per year of entry. You can usually choose up to two courses.

ATAS certificate (overseas candidates)

An ATAS certificate is required for all Non-EEA/Swiss nationals who require a visa to study in the UK.

To apply for an ATAS certificate online, you will need your programme details and the relevant Common Aggregation Hierarchy (CAH) code and ‘descriptor’. For this course, these are:

CAH codeDescriptor
CAH10-01-09 chemical, process and energy engineering

Your Tier 4 visa application, or extension of stay, will automatically be refused if you need an ATAS certificate and cannot provide one.
For further guidance on obtaining an ATAS certificate please see the information on our International Student Support website.

Tuition fees and funding

The level of tuition fees you pay is based on your fee status, which we assess based on UK government legislation.

For more information on the funding opportunities that are available, please visit our Fees and Funding website.

Tuition fees

Tuition fees (Home and EU students)

2020 entry
£14,000 per year

Fees are charged by year of entry to the College and not year of study.

Except where otherwise indicated, the fees for students on courses lasting more than one year will increase annually by an amount linked to inflation, including for part-time students on modular programmes. The measure of inflation used will be the Retail Price Index (RPI) value in the April of the calendar year in which the academic session starts e.g. the RPI value in April 2020 will apply to fees for the academic year 2020–2021.

Tuition fees (Overseas and Islands students)

2020 entry
£32,500 per year

Fees are charged by year of entry to the College and not year of study.

Except where otherwise indicated, the fees for students on courses lasting more than one year will increase annually by an amount linked to inflation, including for part-time students on modular programmes. The measure of inflation used will be the Retail Price Index (RPI) value in the April of the calendar year in which the academic session starts e.g. the RPI value in April 2020 will apply to fees for the academic year 2020–2021.

Postgraduate Master's loan

If you are a Home or EU student who meets certain criteria, you may be able to apply for a Postgraduate Master’s Loan from the UK government.

For 2019-20 entry, the maximum amount was of £10,906. The loan is not means-tested and you can choose whether to put it towards your tuition fees or living costs.


We offer a range of scholarships for postgraduate students to support you through your studies. Try our scholarships search tool to see what you might be eligible for.

There are a number of external organisations also offer awards for Imperial students, find out more about non-Imperial scholarships.

Accommodation and living costs

Living costs, including accommodation, are not included in your tuition fees.

You can compare costs across our different accommodation options on our Accommodation website.

A rough guide to what you might expect to spend to live in reasonable comfort in London is available on our Fees and Funding website.

Further information


Got a question?

Institute of Molecular Science and Engineering

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