nl en



Admission requirements



Chemistry is the central science in the natural sciences, describing the basic elements of matter and how matter can be converted from one form into another. Chemistry is everywhere around us, in food, batteries, medicine, plastics and even our own body. Many grand societal challenges such as healthy aging or the transition to the use of sustainable energy require chemists to provide solutions. In this course, the student learns the basic concepts of atoms, molecules and chemical reactions, including time and length scales of the nanoworld. Second, the ubiquitous presence of chemistry and its relevance in providing solutions for the big challenges of the future will be discussed.

Course Objectives

After this course the student is able to:

  • Classify matter, recognize and describe it as consisting of atoms, molecules, ions or covalent networks,

  • Describe the structure of atoms and the rationale behind the periodic table of the elements,

  • Describe chemical reactions and why some proceed whereas other do not based on kinetic and thermodynamic arguments,

  • Give examples of chemical reactions relevant for society and evaluate pros and cons of the related chemical processes and products,

  • Discuss the role that chemistry has to play in big challenges for the future of mankind.


Timetables for courses offered at Leiden University College in 2020-2021 will be published on this page of the e-Prospectus.

Mode of instruction

The basic background in chemistry will be taught in lectures and workgroups. The societal aspects will be taught in workgroups, general debate and presentations.

Assessment Method


Reading list



Courses offered at Leiden University College (LUC) are usually only open to LUC students and LUC exchange students. Leiden University students who participate in one of the university’s Honours tracks or programmes may register for one LUC course, if availability permits. Registration is coordinated by the Education Coordinator,


Dr. Sander van Kasteren,