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Organometallic chemistry and homogeneous catalysis (OCHC)


Admission requirements

Core course in MSc Chemistry – Energy and Sustainability, elective course in MSc Chemistry.
Students with a BSc degree in MST (with a major in Chemistry for students who started before September 2017), or a BSc degree in Chemistry or equivalent can enroll in this course.
Other candidates should have a solid background in coordination chemistry, including understanding of sigma and pi donation, pi back-donation, electron count of transition metal compounds, 18 and 16 electron rule.


The course starts with the fundamental principles of coordination and organometallic chemistry: after a short recapitulation of the principles of coordination chemistry and electron counting, the basics will be discussed of stability and reactivity, reaction mechanisms, steric and electronic influence of the ligands on reactivity of the metal centers. In the second part of the course this knowledge will be used in the discussion of various homogeneously catalysed reactions, notably double bond isomerisation, (enantioselective) hydrogenation, hydroformylation, hydrocarboxylation, oligo- and polymerisation and alkene methathesis. In the lectures attention will be given to the applications of homogeneous catalysis in industrial processes and academic research.

Course objectives

At the end of the course students:

  • will be able to explain and apply fundamental principles of organometallic chemistry,

  • will be able to apply the fundamental principles of homogeneous catalysis,

  • will be able to evaluate a reaction or process based on the principles of atom-efficiency and sustainable chemistry,

  • will be able to construct a mechanism of various homogeneously catalysed reactions,

  • will be able to construct tentative catalytic mechanisms also for reactions that were not discussed in class.


Schedule information can be found on the website of the programmes.

You will find the timetables for all courses and degree programmes of Leiden University in the tool MyTimetable (login). Any teaching activities that you have sucessfully registered for in MyStudyMap will automatically be displayed in MyTimeTable. Any timetables that you add manually, will be saved and automatically displayed the next time you sign in.

MyTimetable allows you to integrate your timetable with your calendar apps such as Outlook, Google Calendar, Apple Calendar and other calendar apps on your smartphone. Any timetable changes will be automatically synced with your calendar. If you wish, you can also receive an email notification of the change. You can turn notifications on in ‘Settings’ (after login).

For more information, watch the video or go the the 'help-page' in MyTimetable. Please note: Joint Degree students Leiden/Delft have to merge their two different timetables into one. This video explains how to do this.

Mode of instruction

Lectures and exercises

Assessment method

Closed book written examination (100%)

Reading List

The course is based on the following book:
R.H. Crabtree, The Organometallic Chemistry of the Transition Metals, Wiley Interscience (6th Ed: ISBN: 978-1-118-13807-6 or earlier editions).
Slides presented during the courses


From the academic year 2022-2023 on every student has to register for courses with the new enrollment tool MyStudyMap. There are two registration periods per year: registration for the fall semester opens in July and registration for the spring semester opens in December. Please see this page for more information.

Please note that it is compulsory to both preregister and confirm your participation for every exam and retake. Not being registered for a course means that you are not allowed to participate in the final exam of the course. Confirming your exam participation is possible until ten days before the exam.

Extensive FAQ's on MyStudymap can be found here.


Prof.dr. Lies Bouwman


According to OER article 4.8, students are entitled to view their marked examination for a period of 30 days following the publication of the results of a written examination. Students should contact the lecturer to make an appointment for such an inspection session.