Postgraduate Degrees in Chemistry at UWI, Mona, JAMAICA

1. Search

You can do a search on thesis titles, students who have completed higher degrees and their supervisors at the Chemistry Department at UWI, Mona by using this link.

The full list is available here.


2.1 M.Phil.

2.1.1 General - normally all students register for an M.Phil. degree initially and may transfer to the Ph.D. programme at a later date, preferably within the second year. The M.Phil. degree is a research degree which is examined by written examination in the first semester and a thesis at the end of the programme. It normally takes two years of full time study.

Although the University permits part time study, the Department has found that this route to a higher degree in Chemistry is very difficult.

2.1.2 Courses Offered - in addition to the University's requirements (see the University Higher Degrees Booklet) the Department requires that Masters students enrol and sit examinations in four core graduate courses offered in the first semester. The courses are as follows:

C60J Syntheses and isolation of chemicals and materials (3 credits; 24 Lectures)

Synthetic methods in organic chemistry and materials.
Synthetic methods in inorganic chemistry and materials
Catalytic synthetic methods
Chromatography and extraction of chemicals and materials from fluids and solids.

C60K Reaction mechanisms (3 credits ; 24 Lectures)

Fundamentals of thermodynamics and kinetics
Organic reaction mechanisms
Inorganic reaction mechanisms
Reactions at surfaces

C60L Spectroscopy (24 Lectures- 3 credits)

Fundamental spectroscopy including quantum mechanics and symmetry.
Crystallographic methods
NMR and EPR (electron paramagnetic resonance) methods
Mass spectrometry
Electron microscopy

C60M Research methods (4 credits; 32 Lectures)

Library usage
Instrumental methods
Computer techniques in chemistry
Laboratory safety
2.1.3 Course Examinations - an examination for each of the four courses will be held at the end of the first semester and a minimum grade of B will be required in each course to pass the M.Phil. core requirements. Candidates must obtain this B pass in order to proceed to the research part of the MPhil degree.

There will be no repeat or supplemental examinations allowed, save for circumstances deemed exceptional by the departmental postgraduate committee. For each such exceptional case, the departmental postgraduate committee may allow the failing candidate only one re-sit for each course, preferably, early during the second semester. Candidates failing M.Phil. core course examinations after two attempts (inclusive of fail/absent situations), will be required to withdraw from the Chemistry M.Phil. programme.

The final score in each course will be derived from:

Continuous assessment (homework and tests) = 30%
Final examination = 70%.
A 'Post-facto' external review process will be adapted.

2.1.4 Additional courses - After completing the taught component, M.Phil. candidates will be required to register for the following courses:

C67J Chemistry Seminar- participation in all regular departmental seminars
C67K Chemistry Research Project-individual research project
C67L Teaching Requirement *-two semesters minimum for M.Phil. ;
a total of four semesters for Ph.D., at least one of which should be at a supervisory level.
*This course is deemed necessary for enhancing interpersonal skills, a sense of responsibility and proper work ethics.

A grade of satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) will be awarded every semester for these courses. Two and four 'S' grades are required to complete the M.Phil. and Ph.D. programs respectively.

Special Note: Some of the above requirements may be waved for new M.Phil. or Ph.D. students holding masters degrees or suitable passes in course equivalents.

2.1.5 Student Reports - students will be required to present formally written annual reports (by March 31) to their Supervisors and Graduate Committee on their research. The first report should contain a detailed research plan, which develops on the original research proposal that the Supervisor will have submitted to the Department, prior to the student starting the degree programme.

Progress reports on the student will be prepared by the Supervisor based on the student's annual report.

2.1.6 Student Seminars - students will be required to present to the Department a seminar on their research at the time of thesis writing.

2.1.7 Undergraduate Laboratories - Students will be required to assist for one day each week in the Undergraduate Laboratories (see Financial Assistance, below).

2.2 Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)

Students with suitable research qualifications (a recognised Masters degree or equivalent), may enter the Ph.D. programme directly. These students must submit a research proposal at the time of application for entry into the programme. Most students however transfer from the M.Phil. programme prior to writing their M.Phil. thesis. This transfer can be done by:
a) submitting to the Department an acceptable research proposal and report of work done;
b) successfully presenting and defending to the Department orally, the PhD. research proposal (the Graduate School appoints examiners for this exercise).
In addition to the University's requirements (see University Higher Degrees Booklet), the Department requires that all Ph.D. students meet conditions (2.1.4 - 2.1.7) outlined for M.Phil students, (see above). The Ph.D. degree takes approximately three years of full time research.

Although the University permits part time study this route to a higher degree in Chemistry is very difficult.

2.3 Other Regulations

Postgraduate students will be required to:
a) abide by all safety regulations (see The Safety Booklet);
b) assist with special departmental activities from time to time (conferences, open days, etc.);


The financial support information presented here was last updated in March 1999

Support comes from two main areas:
Financial support can normally be had from two main areas:

3.1 University Postgraduate Awards

The University offers many awards annually for postgraduate study. In addition it administers awards on behalf of donors (e.g. ALCAN, The Jamaican Government, etc.). The stipends generally start from $120,000.00 (tax-free) per year for duration of two or three years with examination and tuition fees being waived. In the case of University Scholarships, preference is given to U.W.I. graduates, particularly those with a first class or second class division one degree.

Students already in the programme may qualify for an award if they do not already have one, especially if their work progress is very good. Postgraduate students should consider applying for these awards each year. Further details are available from the Assistant Registrar, School for Graduate Studies & Research, Mona. Holders of University Scholarships also receive payment for their undergraduate laboratory duties ($212/hour, currently under review).

3.2 Departmental Awards

The Department has several such awards available. The stipend is $180,000.00 (under review) and recipients are required to assist in the undergraduate laboratories for approximately 8 hours per week during the semester. Awards are made annually and normally will be given for two years (M.Phil.) or three years (Ph.D.). Further extensions are possible, but only under special circumstances.


Students interested in entering the Departmental Postgraduate programme should:
1. discuss with members of staff their research interests
2. decide upon a problem of interest and a supervisor with whom they would like to work
3. put in an application for Entry to Postgraduate Courses by April 15th
4. put in an Application for Scholarships and Awards by April 15th
5. keep in touch with the Head of Department and the proposed supervisor.

Students who gain a pass degree (Special or General) normally cannot enter the postgraduate programme until two years after they graduate and only then after they have passed a qualifying examination. Students who are accepted by the University into the Postgraduate programme are not automatically assured of financial support from the Department of Chemistry nor automatically accepted by the Department of Chemistry.

Acceptance into the Department requires that a suitable research project and Supervisor are available. If the University does accept a student's academic qualifications, it is the responsibility of the student to contact the Department to finalize the arrangements.

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Created and maintained by Prof. Robert J. Lancashire,
The Department of Chemistry, University of the West Indies,
Mona Campus, Kingston 7, Jamaica.
Created Feb 1995. Links checked and/or last modified 1st December 2003.