2023-2024 / CHIM0254-1

Biological analytical chemistry


20h Th, 40h Pr

Number of credits

 Bachelor in biology5 crédits 


Gauthier Eppe

Language(s) of instruction

French language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the first semester, review in January


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

First part: The concepts of analytical chemistry and the importance of analytical chemistry in biology and life science: 1. Introduction 2. Measurements in analytical chemistry 3. Experimental errors Second part : The reactions and chemical equilibrium, their role in biochemistry and their role to develop analytical methods 4. Chemical equilibria 5. Titrations 6. Acid-Base equilibria 7. Complexation equilibria Third part: introduction to separation methods. We discuss the basic principles of chromatographic separation mechanism. We will detail the different parameters that characterize a chromatographic separation. We discuss the main types of chromatography: Gas chromatography Liquid chromatography Ionic chromatography Size exclusion chromatography

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

Understanding, interpreting and applying the different reaction steps of a quantitative chemical analysis protocol in order to obtain the best accuracy and precision performances are the main objectives of the course. This implies a perfect knowledge of the chemical reactions which it implements. The understanding of the phenomena of coupled chemical equilibria is another essential knowledge for the later courses of biochemistry. For the third part of the course, understand the basics of separation methods by chromatography. This requires a thorough knowledge of the separation mechanisms involved. Students will be expected to be able to select an appropriate chromatographic technique (including the choice of stationary and mobile phases) to address a given analytical problem. They will also be expected to understand and interpret the influence that experimental parameters have on the separation efficiency of chromatography.

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

The general chemistry course of the first year

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

See below

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

Face-to-face course

Additional information:

Theoretical course: The lessons (2h) begin the Tuesdays of the first quadrimester from 10:30 to 12:3030 and Wednesdays 8:00 to 10:00 (see Celcat). The course uses powerpoint presentations and exercices on the blackboard. An interruption of 5 to 10 minutes is provided at about the middle of each lesson. Due to Covid crisis, the courses are given alternatively for the students in face to face and visoconferences according to the recommendations given. 

Directed works:
6 to 8 sessions are planned  for solving numerical problems in the course material. These sessions are very important because the final written exam is predominantly based on numerical exercises.

Laboratory works: they begin first Wednesday of the first quadrimester of the year (rooms R4 and R10, Chemistry building B6d -TP). They start at 10h until 18h (with an interruption for lunch between 13h and 14h) . The purpose is primarily to initiate the students with the specific requirements of the chemical analysis: do not lose anything, do not contaminate, great care, cleanliness and method, strict respect of the experimental protocols... The reliability, precision, trueness and accuracy of an analysis result depend, of course, on the choice of the method but also on the dexterity and competence of the experimentalist.

Recommended or required readings

The notes as well as the handbook of laboratory work are available at the presses  universitaires: Chimie Analytique Biologique 2023-2024  

 The notes alqo include a list of numerical exercises, some solved.
No particular material (except the apron) is necessary for the laboratories. The use of a handheld scientific calculator (programmable) is allowed, even advised for the solution of the exercises. As supplementary information, the consultation of the following work is highly recommended:
- D.C. Harris, Quantitative Chemical Analysis, 6th or 7th edition, WH Freeman, New York, 2003 for the 6th edition.

Exam(s) in session

Any session

- In-person

written exam ( open-ended questions )

Additional information:

Practical laboratory work: the evaluation is made on the exactitude of the returned analysis results as well as on the theoretical understanding of the proposed protocols. The final practical works score is calculated on the basis of the experimental reports, the quizzes, and a general written test. They count for 30% of the final grade. From one year to the next, students who graded more than 10/20 do not have to repeat the practical work.

In-person, written exam


Matière de l'évaluation

The evaluation will cover all the content seen in the theory course (powerpoints + lecture notes), the concepts seen in the practical sessions as well as the exercises solved in the practice sessions (rehearsals), in the theory course and in the additional exercises in the rehearsal booklet.


Méthodes d'évaluation

The written exam will consist of a series of theory questions and exercise resolutions. Its duration will not exceed 4 hours. The examination will represent 70% of the final mark, the practical work mark will represent 30%.


Work placement(s)

1- Traditional laboratory sessions are planned for 5 weeks, on Wednesdays from 10 am to 6 pm. Three experiments will be performed (quantitation by gravimetry, colorimetry, and volumetric titration). The students submit a report on their analysis. Quizzes can be organized during the labs to test knowledge and understanding of the present experiments.


These two activities are parts of the teaching module and are mandatory. The student who will not participate at both entire activities and/or provided their reports outside the deadlines fixed will not be admitted at the exam. 




Organisational remarks and main changes to the course

See here below


Pr. Gauthier Eppe
Institut de Chimie, Bat B6c, Local 1/9A
Tel. +32-4-366.3422
e-mail. g.eppe@uliege.be

Exercises sessions: Aurore Schneiders: aschneiders@uliege.be

Laboratories : Damien Coibion: Damien.coibion@uliege.be
Laboratory assistant: : Stéphane Luts

Association of one or more MOOCs