Course Overview

Do you have a chemistry or chemical engineering degree?

Are you interested in research in catalysis?

If so, see how our research and training in Catalysis is helping shape our future...

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Why Catalysis?

Since the landmark achievements of Nobel laureate, Sir Geoffrey Wilkinson in catalysis, Imperial College has been known internationally as a centre for catalysis research and this tradition continues today with over 30 members of the Chemistry and Chemical Engineering departments active in the area. Companies such as BP, INEOS, Sasol, Johnson Matthey, Pfizer, AstraZeneca all have research and development facilities in the UK. Researchers from many of these companies will deliver taught elements of this course, and therefore the students will have the opportunity to learn from and network with future employers first hand. The training offered by this course within an internationally-leading institution will open a variety of international career options to our students, either within the framework of a PhD programme or within industry.

Course Overview

Catalysis has traditionally been divided into homogenous (solution-based), heterogeneous (solid-liquid, solid-gas interface) and (reaction) engineering disciplines. However, this distinction is becoming increasingly blurred; this MRes course aims to provide students with a coherent overview of these areas. Students will graduate from the course with a solid knowledge base in the area and will be challenged to develop their own ideas on how to focus academic and industrial research to meet pressing challenges. While the course will be run through the Chemistry Department, close ties will be maintained with Chemical Engineering as well as contact with industry through lectures on the course and invited seminars. At its conclusion, students will be ideally placed to undertake PhD studies in collaborative research along the chemistry-engineering spectrum or to apply their knowledge in industry.

How to apply

Please apply by completing and submiting the online Imperial College Postgraduate application form. The program you should select when completing the online application is under 'Department of Chemistry' and the course name is 'F1Y5 - MRes in Catalysis : Chemistry and Engineering'.

Further application guidance:

Tuition fees and scholarships

Further information on tuition fees.

There are opportunities to gain scholarships in a competitive fashion. These will provide funding towards tuition fees and/or living expenses and will be granted on the basis of academic merit and excellence of the applicant. For a fulll list view all available scholarships for Masters study.

The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) was introduced on 1 November 2007. Under this scheme, all non-EEA students who need a student visa to study in the UK on MRes course will be required to apply for ATAS clearance before applying for a Tier 4 (General) student visa. 

Any students already in the UK who need to extend their student visa to commence or continue on one of the relevant courses, will also need to get ATAS clearance before making a student visa extension application. This scheme can be found on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website and when you have your college offer, you can make your application online.

PLEASE NOTE that an ATAS certificate is only valid for 6 months from the date of issue. You must make sure that you submit your visa application before the ATAS expires!

You should apply for ATAS clearance well in advance  of your student visa application as the processing time for ATAS can be as long as 30 working days.

NB: In addition to the above, during the months of June, July, August and September, ATAS is extremely busy and so the processing time for ATAS applications can be even longer.

We receive many queries about how to complete sections of the ATAS application. Please refer to our ATAS FAQ [pdf]  in the first instance as your query may easily be resolved If the FAQs do not answer your query then please contact us or contact the ATAS team directly.

More information can be accessed on


The text below should be used to describe the MRes course in the ATAS application

The MRes course in Catalysis at Imperial College London is designed to improve the students understanding and experience in all areas of Catalysis by promoting the design and efficient use of catalytic systems for the production of fine and bulk chemicals. The research project will be based in a multidisciplinary area, supervised by a chemist and another academic. This will often be a chemical engineer, who will provide complementary expertise to the project. The student will be examining areas such as homogenous and heterogeneous catalysis, catalyst design and synthesis, reaction mechanisms and reaction engineering. These studies will include a proposal, dissertation, oral presentations, a viva and exams.

Selected publications from MRes projects

Here is a selected list of publications that came out of MRes projects in the department of Chemsitry:


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For further details of the course please consult the links to the documents on the left of this page. If these do not answer your query, please email the Chemistry MRes admin ( or contact the Course Director Prof George Britovsek.

Entry requirements

Academic requirement: 2:1 degree or higher in Chemistry, Engineering or related subject. A modest level of background chemistry or engineering knowledge is assumed.

English requirement: IELTS 6.5 Overall (minimum 6.0 in all elements).