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University of Helsinki Faculty of Science
Analytical Chemistry



The technological development of instrumental analysis is moving ahead at a fast pace. The present role of analytical chemistry is well described by IUPAC (Edinburgh Definition, 1993): “a scientific discipline that develops and applies methods, instruments, and strategies to obtain information on the composition of nature of matter in space and time”.

Analytical chemistry is a measurement science consisting of a set of powerful ideas and methods applicable in all fields of science and medicine. Analytical chemistry plays a vital role in the development of all the sciences. Analytical chemists thus require broad and solid background knowledge of chemical and physical concepts.

Very often the analytical procedure includes a separation step as a necessary part. Qualitative analysis is often an integral part of the separation step, and the determination of the identity of the analytes is an essential adjunct to quantitative analysis.

Courses in analytical chemistry frequently are structured along the lines of the analytical methods. Study of the fundamental concepts assists in understanding, adapting and applying analytical techniques. Equipped with a knowledge of fundamental concepts, the analyst will be able to decide when a particular problem cannot be solved by traditional methods, and when creative approaches or new analytical systems need to be developed.