Chemical Engineering Watch

zootzoot
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 4 days ago
#1
For an A-Level Chemistry student who doesn't know much about chemical engineering, what would you say chemical engineering is about (Is it all just about maintaining plants).

Is there much understanding of chemistry involved (Mainly refering to using reactions that other people have discovered)?

What are the job prospects like for chemical engineering, compared to chemistry degree?

Would doing a bsc in chemistry and then going onto do a Msc in ChemEng (e.g. UCL) be worthwhile if I decided I want to change career or would I be at a disadvantage compared to pure ChemEng degree students? Or can a chemistry student just apply for a lot of the ChemEng jobs - Mainly in the pharma or petrochemical industries.

Thank you
0
reply
LuigiMario
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#2
Report 4 days ago
#2
I have a mate who wanted to be a Chem Eng, applied and got offers from Strathclyde, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Imperial (except imperial rejected her)

I think she wants to do chem reactions by the tonne, work for I N E O S (which seems to be a cycling organisation, too) and she wants to change the world (it is always possible to improve things that exist, new tech is always coming online, new ideas being tested)

I always think where you do your first degree, and what it is exactly in, doesn't matter that much - provided it has the good path through to what you want to do for your Masters, or Doctorate. I work closely with two Chem PhD's one is a world expert in nanotechnology & nanobiotech, and the other is developing international standards for renewable energy systems. My biggest suggestion is choose a first degree that has as much work experience as possible in your first three or four years, to allow you to choose where you want to go, with insider knowledge.
0
reply
zootzoot
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#3
Report Thread starter 4 days ago
#3
(Original post by LuigiMario)
I have a mate who wanted to be a Chem Eng, applied and got offers from Strathclyde, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Imperial (except imperial rejected her)

I think she wants to do chem reactions by the tonne, work for I N E O S (which seems to be a cycling organisation, too) and she wants to change the world (it is always possible to improve things that exist, new tech is always coming online, new ideas being tested)

I always think where you do your first degree, and what it is exactly in, doesn't matter that much - provided it has the good path through to what you want to do for your Masters, or Doctorate. I work closely with two Chem PhD's one is a world expert in nanotechnology & nanobiotech, and the other is developing international standards for renewable energy systems. My biggest suggestion is choose a first degree that has as much work experience as possible in your first three or four years, to allow you to choose where you want to go, with insider knowledge.
That sounds good.

I like chemistry at A-Level but the job prospects don't look to great for it and I'm not sure if I want to go into research either.

Chemical engineering on the other hand looks really interesting from what I've heard, good job prospects, a much more practical subject and is more involved with creating a product on mass, with someone else having done most of the chemistry theory of the reaction beforehand.
Last edited by zootzoot; 4 days ago
0
reply
Newcastle University Student Ambassador
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#4
Report 3 days ago
#4
(Original post by zootzoot)
For an A-Level Chemistry student who doesn't know much about chemical engineering, what would you say chemical engineering is about (Is it all just about maintaining plants).

Is there much understanding of chemistry involved (Mainly refering to using reactions that other people have discovered)?

What are the job prospects like for chemical engineering, compared to chemistry degree?

Would doing a bsc in chemistry and then going onto do a Msc in ChemEng (e.g. UCL) be worthwhile if I decided I want to change career or would I be at a disadvantage compared to pure ChemEng degree students? Or can a chemistry student just apply for a lot of the ChemEng jobs - Mainly in the pharma or petrochemical industries.

Thank you
Hi zootzoot, if you enjoy Chemistry as a subject you would enjoy both Chemistry and Chemical Engineering degrees, you will need a good understanding of chemistry however, there is a lot less direct chemistry involved in Chemical Engineering as there are other non-chemistry-related modules. In Chemical Engineering some of the topics you're taught are how to perform, measure, analyse and manipulate chemical reactions and the design criteria for heat exchangers and other plant equipment used in process plants. You also typically learn about sustainable engineering, bioprocessing and process control.

You may find it helpful to have a look at Chemistry and Chemical Engineering modules to see which degree appeals to you more -
BSc Chemistry modules at Newcastle University: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/undergraduate/...#coursedetails
Chemical Engineering modules at Newcastle University: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/undergraduate/...#coursedetails
You can also check out the MSc Chemical Engineering modules: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/postgraduate/c...g-msc/#modules

Something else you may want to consider when choosing to do a BSc in Chemistry then an MSc in Chemical Engineering or a Chemical Engineering degree is that you can do an MEng. This is one degree (although it includes Bachelor teaching and Master teaching) for which you will only have to apply once and will be considered as one degree with regard to student finance in the UK, as opposed to doing a BSc + MSc for which you will have to apply once for each and will be considered as two separate degrees. If you decide to do a BSc in Chemistry and then an MSc in Chemical Engineering you may also need relevant industrial experience to apply for the MSc as most universities require a Chemical Engineering bachelor's degree to apply.

The job prospects are great for both degrees and Chemistry graduates can apply for some Chemical Engineering jobs, the Graduate Prospects website (the UK's Official Careers Website) can hopefully offer a lot more insight for you:
Chemistry: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-...gree/chemistry
Chemical Engineering: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-...al-engineering

If you have any other questions you can contact [email protected]
I hope this helps
- Jasmine
0
reply
zootzoot
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#5
Report Thread starter 3 days ago
#5
(Original post by Newcastle University Student Ambassador)
Hi zootzoot, if you enjoy Chemistry as a subject you would enjoy both Chemistry and Chemical Engineering degrees, you will need a good understanding of chemistry however, there is a lot less direct chemistry involved in Chemical Engineering as there are other non-chemistry-related modules. In Chemical Engineering some of the topics you're taught are how to perform, measure, analyse and manipulate chemical reactions and the design criteria for heat exchangers and other plant equipment used in process plants. You also typically learn about sustainable engineering, bioprocessing and process control.

You may find it helpful to have a look at Chemistry and Chemical Engineering modules to see which degree appeals to you more -
BSc Chemistry modules at Newcastle University: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/undergraduate/...#coursedetails
Chemical Engineering modules at Newcastle University: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/undergraduate/...#coursedetails
You can also check out the MSc Chemical Engineering modules: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/postgraduate/c...g-msc/#modules

Something else you may want to consider when choosing to do a BSc in Chemistry then an MSc in Chemical Engineering or a Chemical Engineering degree is that you can do an MEng. This is one degree (although it includes Bachelor teaching and Master teaching) for which you will only have to apply once and will be considered as one degree with regard to student finance in the UK, as opposed to doing a BSc + MSc for which you will have to apply once for each and will be considered as two separate degrees. If you decide to do a BSc in Chemistry and then an MSc in Chemical Engineering you may also need relevant industrial experience to apply for the MSc as most universities require a Chemical Engineering bachelor's degree to apply.

The job prospects are great for both degrees and Chemistry graduates can apply for some Chemical Engineering jobs, the Graduate Prospects website (the UK's Official Careers Website) can hopefully offer a lot more insight for you:
Chemistry: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-...gree/chemistry
Chemical Engineering: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-...al-engineering

If you have any other questions you can contact [email protected]
I hope this helps
- Jasmine
Thank you for your reply.
I would like to ask how useful is work experience when applying for your Chemical engineering degree, as I haven't been able to find any engineering placements, but I have done work related to chemistry.
0
reply
GreenCub
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#6
Report 3 days ago
#6
(Original post by zootzoot)
For an A-Level Chemistry student who doesn't know much about chemical engineering, what would you say chemical engineering is about (Is it all just about maintaining plants).

Is there much understanding of chemistry involved (Mainly refering to using reactions that other people have discovered)?

What are the job prospects like for chemical engineering, compared to chemistry degree?

Would doing a bsc in chemistry and then going onto do a Msc in ChemEng (e.g. UCL) be worthwhile if I decided I want to change career or would I be at a disadvantage compared to pure ChemEng degree students? Or can a chemistry student just apply for a lot of the ChemEng jobs - Mainly in the pharma or petrochemical industries.

Thank you
Year 12 maths applicant here - I used to want to do chemical engineering so I know quite a bit about it.

Chemical engineering is about designing and optimising the chemical processes used to produce a variety of products. For example, at a chemical plant an engineer would be in charge of design and calculations to maximise the amount of product produced and ensure the plant is safe.

There is far more applied maths and physics in chemical engineering than there is chemistry. Liking chemistry is not a good reason to do the ChemEng course. You might use pressure and fluid dynamics equations to work out the rate of flow of a liquid through a pipe, or thermodynamics to determine the temperature that a reactor could get to. I hear there's also a lot of calculus and differential equations (at least in the degree - you use less maths on the job because software does the more advanced maths). You still have to have a decent understanding of chemistry though.

As for job prospects, you can't directly compare chemistry and ChemEng because graduates from each of those degrees tend to work in different fields, but if you go to a good university and get a good degree classification (usually first or 2.1) your prospects should be good, especially considering that chemical engineers are in demand for things like renewable fuels and energy or pharmaceuticals. There's also always the option of going into career paths that don't require a particular degree subject (e.g. finance or management).

If you like chemistry more than engineering, I'd recommend you just go for a pure chemistry course, although having a BSc in chemistry would open up some pathways for you.

For your uni application you certainly don't have to have any work experience - only Medicine, Dentistry and Vet Med require work experience and it would be very difficult for a 6th former to find experience on a chemical plant anyway.
0
reply
zootzoot
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#7
Report Thread starter 3 days ago
#7
(Original post by GreenCub)
Year 12 maths applicant here - I used to want to do chemical engineering so I know quite a bit about it.

Chemical engineering is about designing and optimising the chemical processes used to produce a variety of products. For example, at a chemical plant an engineer would be in charge of design and calculations to maximise the amount of product produced and ensure the plant is safe.

There is far more applied maths and physics in chemical engineering than there is chemistry. Liking chemistry is not a good reason to do the ChemEng course. You might use pressure and fluid dynamics equations to work out the rate of flow of a liquid through a pipe, or thermodynamics to determine the temperature that a reactor could get to. I hear there's also a lot of calculus and differential equations (at least in the degree - you use less maths on the job because software does the more advanced maths). You still have to have a decent understanding of chemistry though.

As for job prospects, you can't directly compare chemistry and ChemEng because graduates from each of those degrees tend to work in different fields, but if you go to a good university and get a good degree classification (usually first or 2.1) your prospects should be good, especially considering that chemical engineers are in demand for things like renewable fuels and energy or pharmaceuticals. There's also always the option of going into career paths that don't require a particular degree subject (e.g. finance or management).

If you like chemistry more than engineering, I'd recommend you just go for a pure chemistry course, although having a BSc in chemistry would open up some pathways for you.

For your uni application you certainly don't have to have any work experience - only Medicine, Dentistry and Vet Med require work experience and it would be very difficult for a 6th former to find experience on a chemical plant anyway.
Thank you for your reply aswell

Ive enjoyed chemistry at A-Level (Probably my best subject), but I don't want to do a degree and then work in an unrelated field and not have to use it as ive heard that the chemistry field is quite saturated and that half (or more than half) of those from top unis don't even go into a science related field and I don't want to end up as a lab technician the whole time either. But at the same time it's a good degree to use to get into grad scheme that allows any degree.

But at the same time ChemEng looks very interesting has better prospects, but I don't have much experience in it as to what it's actually going to be like, although I've done a taster day on Bioengineering and that was quite good (and apparently that is one of the modules of chemical eng). And I also like the design and problem solving part of it
Last edited by zootzoot; 3 days ago
0
reply
GreenCub
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#8
Report 3 days ago
#8
(Original post by zootzoot)
Thank you for your reply aswell

Ive enjoyed chemistry at A-Level (Probably my best subject), but I don't want to do a degree and then work in an unrelated field and not have to use it as ive heard that the chemistry field is quite saturated and that half (or more than half) of those from top unis don't even go into a science related field and I don't want to end up as a lab technician the whole time either. But at the same time it's a good degree to use to get into grad scheme that allows any degree.

But at the same time ChemEng looks very interesting has better prospects, but I don't have much experience in it as to what it's actually going to be like, although I've done a taster day on Bioengineering and that was quite good (and apparently that is one of the modules of chemical eng). And I also like the design and problem solving part of it
I see what you mean, although if you're determined enough it's certainly possible to get very far in chemistry.

It's important to consider that chemistry is a science degree and ChemEng is obviously an engineering degree which will be more focused on applying science and maximising gains than how the science itself works. Are you generally more interested in 'pure' science, or applying scientific ideas and designing real-world things?

Also, what are your other A levels and how interested are you in maths and the mechanics part of physics?
0
reply
zootzoot
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#9
Report Thread starter 3 days ago
#9
(Original post by GreenCub)
I see what you mean, although if you're determined enough it's certainly possible to get very far in chemistry.

It's important to consider that chemistry is a science degree and ChemEng is obviously an engineering degree which will be more focused on applying science and maximising gains than how the science itself works. Are you generally more interested in 'pure' science, or applying scientific ideas and designing real-world things?

Also, what are your other A levels and how interested are you in maths and the mechanics part of physics?
I do Maths, Bio and Chem. But now deeply regret not picking either Further Maths or Physics (instead of bio).

I enjoy learning about chemistry in class but I'm not sure the jobs in chemistry are that interesting.
But designing things and putting a chemical reaction that someone else has discovered into mass production does sound like something I'd much rather do than being sat in a lab all day.
0
reply
GreenCub
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#10
Report 3 days ago
#10
(Original post by zootzoot)
I do Maths, Bio and Chem. But now deeply regret not picking either Further Maths or Physics (instead of bio).

I enjoy learning about chemistry in class but I'm not sure the jobs in chemistry are that interesting.
But designing things and putting a chemical reaction that someone else has discovered into mass production does sound like something I'd much rather do than being sat in a lab all day.
Have you considered biochemical engineering?
0
reply
mnot
Badges: 18
Rep:
?
#11
Report 3 days ago
#11
(Original post by zootzoot)
For an A-Level Chemistry student who doesn't know much about chemical engineering, what would you say chemical engineering is about (Is it all just about maintaining plants).

Is there much understanding of chemistry involved (Mainly refering to using reactions that other people have discovered)?

What are the job prospects like for chemical engineering, compared to chemistry degree?

Would doing a bsc in chemistry and then going onto do a Msc in ChemEng (e.g. UCL) be worthwhile if I decided I want to change career or would I be at a disadvantage compared to pure ChemEng degree students? Or can a chemistry student just apply for a lot of the ChemEng jobs - Mainly in the pharma or petrochemical industries.

Thank you
Theyll be lots of info on google.

But chemical engineering is much more about commercial and industrial use of chemistry, understanding how to practically manage chemical systems.

Wheras a chemical science degree is more about chemistry in its 'purest form' if that makes sense.

I would also imagine chemical engineering covers many more engineering principles, design, some thermofluid mechanics perhaps etc.

Get on google and have a look! Yes you could always do a chem BSc + ChemEng MSc (or the other way round etc.) If you want to do engineering I would do it from day 1, but if you really want to do chemistry then do it the other way round.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts

All the exam results help you need

1,247

people online now

225,530

students helped last year
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

University open days

  • Sheffield Hallam University
    Clearing open day Undergraduate
    Tue, 20 Aug '19
  • Bournemouth University
    Clearing Open Day Undergraduate
    Wed, 21 Aug '19
  • University of Dundee
    Undergraduate Open Day Undergraduate
    Mon, 26 Aug '19

Are you going to self-release into Clearing?

Yes I've pressed the button (75)
17.28%
No I'm happy with my uni offer (280)
64.52%
Not yet but I am planning to (21)
4.84%
Not yet but I might (58)
13.36%

Watched Threads

View All