Complete GC & GC-MS

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Course summary

  • Duration: 5 days for face-to-face | Total of 32.5 hours for Virtual Classroom course
  • Experience level: Intermediate
  • Course type: Universal, applicable to all instrumentation
  • Teaching method: Face-to-face OR online via live video, with instrument parts and consumables to see, case studies to solve and chromatograms to troubleshoot
  • RSC CPD approval: Approved for CPD
  • Scheduled course venue: The Open University | Other venues | Virtual Classroom
  • Online/onsite/in-house/offsite availability: Arrange this course just for you
  • On-Demand availability: Available
  • Scheduled course price: £1675 + VAT per delegate
  • Course discount: RSC and CAMS members receive a discount on this course*

Course approval

Royal Society of Chemistry approved training logo

This course has been approved by the Royal Society of Chemistry for purposes of Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

What will you learn on this course?

The Complete GC & GC-MS course is built from the Practical Essentials of GC & GC-MS and the GC & GC-MS Clinic courses to provide a complete training solution enabling you to understand your Gas Chromatograph or GC-MS instrument, develop applications, troubleshoot & maintain it.

This course covers all the practical theory you need to know about Gas Chromatography and its related techniques including gas chromatography-mass spectrometry; gases and plumbing; sample introduction like split, splitless, on-column and large volume injection techniques; data analysis; and sampling techniques like headspace, SPME, pyrolysis, thermal desorption, purge & trap, liquid-liquid and solid-phase extraction.

It also looks at how to choose the GC & GC-MS techniques for an application, set-up the instrument, how to develop & optimise methods and then finally how to maintain & troubleshoot the instrument, techniques and method. It also takes a brief look at advanced techniques to help solve those very tricky applications including Selective Discrimination, Deconvolution, Two-Dimensional GC (GC+GC & GCxGC) and Chemometrics.

A FREE glossary on GC & GC-MS is provided with this course!

Learning outcomes

  • You will learn the importance of good chromatography
  • You will learn how to select and use the GC carrier gas
  • You will learn about various injection techniques and when to use each
  • You will learn how to select a GC column
  • You will learn the operation and selection of an appropriate GC detector
  • You will learn about the principles and components of the mass spectrometer
  • You will learn how to undertake data analysis
  • You will learn about different sampling techniques for GC
  • You will learn strategies for method development
  • You will get an introduction to GC & MS advanced techniques
  • You will recognise areas requiring maintenance on the instrument
  • You will learn the logical steps of instrument troubleshooting

Who is this course for?

The Complete GC & GC-MS course is for those who have some knowledge of gas chromatography and would like to greatly enhance it, learning the essential and practical theory about all available GC & GC-MS techniques.

For complete beginners with no or very little knowledge of GC, it is advisable to first attend the Absolute Basics of GC & GC-MS as you may be overwhelmed by the amount of information on this course.

Course combinations

If you don't have time to attend the full course all at once, you can learn about the techniques in the Practical Essentials course, go back to the lab to implement the knowledge and then join us at a later date to attend the more advanced GC & GC-MS Clinic course.

With Virtual Classroom training, you can choose to attend individual modules, to improve your knowledge in a particular area.

How to book this course

Feedback from previous attendees of Virtual Classroom course

"This course was much better than other online courses I have attended. Most interesting topic: Practical essentials of sampling and sample preparation techniques."  Tatiana Bezborodova, Laboratory Manager, College Biofuels (September/October 2021).

"Course content was very interesting and relevant to anyone hoping to expand their GC-MS knowledge.
Lots to learn and apply to all different types of analysis. High standard of knowledge and how things should be done!"
  (The GC & GC-MS Clinic, October 2020).

"It is comprehensive and covers all topics. The course instructor speaks very clearly and good use of analogy to explain the concept."  (Practical Essentials of GC & GC-MS, July 2020).

"All the course questions are a good reminder to apply each time when I need to choose a method or technique for an application."  (Module 1: Practical Essentials of Gas Chromatography and GC-MS Introduction, July 2020).

"Comprehensive knowledge about sample introduction, particularly all the diagrams with a clear explanation from the instructor."  (Module 3: Practical Essentials of Sample Introduction in GC & GC-MS, July 2020).

"I found good details illustrated in the course materials and a clear explanation of each method and technique as well as the comparison of the methods and techniques are equally interesting and useful."  (Module 3: Practical Essentials of Sample Introduction in GC & GC-MS, July 2020).

"Comprehensive knowledge about columns."  (Module 4: Practical Essentials of GC Columns, July 2020).

"I enjoyed that this module material covers all methods and detailed the why, how and the importance of each, as well as listed the pros and cons of each method."  (Module 7: Practical Essentials of Data Analysis for GC & GC-MS, July 2020).

"It is great all about different sampling and sampling preparation techniques in a structured way. I particularly enjoy the part of solid-phase sampling techniques. Diane gave an overview of all the solid phase sampling techniques, also the theory behind and how to apply. Her rich knowledge and experience add to another layer of understanding of these techniques, especially in the Q&A session."  (Module 8: Practical Essentials of Sampling & Sample Preparation Techniques for GC & GC-MS, July 2020).

"Great presentation with lots of opportunities to ask questions. This has more than met my expectations."  (The GC & GC-MS Clinic, February 2021).

"Being able to hear from an expert in the field and see some practical examples. I was given a lot of base knowledge and loads of helpful tips that I would never have thought about."   Hollie Gillespie, QC Lab Analyst, NextGEN360 (Module 11: Applied GC & GC-MS Maintenance, May 2020).

"It was good to be able to have an outline of how to deal with problems when they first appear. Lots of useful tips were included alongside the more basic information. [Most useful topic:] Chromatogram Troubleshooting. It was really useful to be able to apply the knowledge given in the training and see some real examples."  Hollie Gillespie, QC Lab Analyst, NextGEN360 (Module 12: Applied Troubleshooting for GC & GC-MS, May 2020).

Feedback from previous attendees of Face-to-Face course

"(Compared to other courses) this one is more informative and handled by more experienced facilitators."  Rodgers Mbambara, Chief Laboratory Analyst, Zambia Medicines Regulatory Authority, Complete GC & GC-MS, April 2023

"The whole course was interesting, each part gave me a new knowledge that never realise before."  Mohammed Elsayed - Field Technical Support, Aroscent, Egypt (Onsite Bespoke GC & GC-MS training, March 2022).

"Was useful and well organised."  Zamfira Dinca, Research Institute for Analytical Instrumentation ICIA, Romania (October 2019).

"Very good course with all the info, examples by presenters. Lots of information."  (October 2019).

"As a very new topic I was pleased I could absorb a great deal of information, even though there was a lot to take in from the start. I enjoyed realising that I had learned a great deal."  Alex Dawson, PhD student, The Open University (October 2019).

"The ease with which the course was taught. Everything was set out in an easy to understand way."  (October 2019).

"[I enjoyed] the part about pyrolysis. Also that the instructor was so interested in the topic which made me more interested."  Jeanette Lykkemark, PhD student, Aalborg university, Denmark (October 2019).

"Gained knowledge in many areas which gives confidence working with/on instruments."  (April 2019).

"The practical exercises looking at different chromatograms and identify possible problems which allows to apply the knowledge gathered during the week."  Sonia Garcia-Alcega, Consultant, The Open University (April 2019).

"Course instructor was very knowledgeable and able to answer most questions asked. A lot of information about all aspects."  (April 2019).

"Very knowlegeable instructor and good quality course notes."  (April 2019).

"The way it is presented, it is not boring at all, Richard is a great instructor. I enjoy."  Martina Ožbolt, Analyst in Analytics, Pliva Croatia Ltd (April 2019).

"All the maintenance required and learning lots about different inlets/liners that I didn't know previously."  Rachel Hand, Research Associate, The Open University (April 2019).

"Well conducted course."  Edward Mubiru, Lecturer, Makerere University, Uganda (April 2019).

(Most interesting topic:) "Theoretical basis of the processes."  Camelia Tulcan, Associate Professor, Banat University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, Romania (April 2019).

"I obviously enjoyed almost every part of the course."  Karzan Kamal Rashid (July 2018).

"[I enjoyed] gaining knowledge about the GC system."  delegate from environmental industry (July 2018).

"[I enjoyed] easy, laidback environment for learning / remembering all details of GC & GC-MS. Better structure and more in-depth [compared to other courses]."  delegate from biochemistry industry (January 2018).

"Depth of the topics covered was very useful in understanding. Why we do certain things/setup the instrument in a certain way in the lab, very relevent to the research that we do.  Great ranges of topics covered too, just not covering the food industry, very knowledgeable course instructor." A delegate from a UK university (July 2017).

"(I enjoyed) troubleshooting - can relate to our research work."  Imogen Ramsey, PhD Student, University of Nottingham (July 2017).

"Everything was well explained and in detail. All Questions answered. Very Good organised. Great value for money. One of the best courses I've followed."  Anthi Schoina, Chemist, Veritas Petroleum Services (February 2017).

"It has been very usefull overall. (I enjoyed) having the opportunity to look at the machines in detail."  Debora Bortolotli, Trainee GC-MS Analyst, CPL Aromas (February 2017).

"More comprehensive [compared to other courses attended]."  Yasmin Quora (February 2017).

"Picking up hints and tips, increase my awareness of some of the topics. (Anthias Consulting) have the best knowledge for GC-MS techniques for use on Agilent instruments."  David Saunders, Laboratory Chemist, Si Group UK (attended GC & GC-MS clinic, October 2016).

"It has been an excellent course for specialists. The tutor has been really good in explaining details."   Simone Cogliati, PhD Student, The Open University (June 2016).

"Throrough course material which covered intensively the principles of GC & GC-MS."   Pramod Pandey, Faculty, UC Davis, USA (June 2016).

"I enjoyed the way Richard was answering and explaining questions and answers."  Edith Ndungu, Techno Electronic Engineering, Kenya (June 2016).

"(I enjoyed) problem solving towards the end - a chance to apply all the learning."  R&D Chemist, Textile manufacturer (June 2016).

"... very useful and detailed"  Sharon Lim Mui Ting,  IACTS Tech, Nottingham University (Oct 2015).

"Relaxed atmosphere but lots packed in"  Stephen Hall, Bioprocess Engineering group manager / Experimental Officer, Nottingham University (October 2015).

"Great overview including basic concepts as well as more advanced material and discussion.  Broad subject base."  PhD Student, UK University (October 2015).

"(I enjoyed) the level of completeness. You feel nothing has been left out."  Kevin Post, Research Chemist, Sabic UK Petrochemicals (April 2015).

"Very insightful course with very knowledgeable instructor who was very helpful."  Hallam Wheatley, Technical Supervisor, Sabic UK Petrochemicals (April 2015).

"The depth of the subject coverage and Imran's knowledge was extremely impressive."  Eric Laverick, Technical Supervisor, Sabic UK Petrochemicals (April 2015).

"(I enjoyed) the depth of information and the way it was explained clearly."  Suzanne Simmons, Research Technician, The Open University (April 2015).

"Knitting together current knowledge to theory and being able to apply to analysis at work."  Senior Analytical Chemist, Pharmaceutical company (April 2015).

"Very comprehensive course, covering basics to more complex. Method development, maintenance and troubleshooting were all very useful."  Research Technician, The Open University (October 2014).

"It's been very interactive because we were only 4 people, so I personally could clarify all my doubts."  Jose Juan Rodriguez Henriquez, ECCO-MATE project, Brandenburg University of Technology (July 2014).

"Great opportunity for open discussion, thanks also to the limited number of people."  Catalyst Testing Operator (July 2014).

"Notes are very thorough and presenting style informal enough to be engaging but not so much as to be unprofessional."  Georgina Cuckston, Chemist, Infineum UK Ltd (July 2014).

"Excellent slides, well presented, with some good visual aids and good narration and delivery by the presenter. This is a fantastic course." Dr Kristopher Elliot, Research Manager from Parker Hannifin Ltd (July 2013).

"The presenter has good overall knowledge of the system. The class was always warm and friendly. Impressively consolidating and truly complete." Albert Fadairo (April 2013).

"I enjoyed learning about how the GC works and how many factors can influence it. [It] has made me think about how we use the machine." Katie Barker from CTDS Ltd (April 2013).

"It was very good and relevant to my work, when I could understand all parts of the instrument and how I can match my research with the right instrument." Niloufar Bahrami Ghahnaniehei, a PhD research student from the University of Nottingham (April 2013).

"The whole overview from sampling to data analysis provides very good insight." Heng Hui Gan, a PhD reserach student from the University of Nottingham (April 2013).

"A very thorough and complete GC course covering both GC theory and practical applications. I've learned a lot from this course, especially little golden nuggets of info. like that of selective exclusion which I doubt I would have picked up anywhere else." 1st year PhD student, Atmospheric Chemistry (July 2012).

"All the information was given in a clear and very professional manner and the course will really help me to identify problems I might encounter in the future. All questions were answered and good examples and solutions to problems given. All topics covered were useful and interesting + we had a tour of the lab!" Katiuska Caraballo, Analytical Chemist at South East Water, attended Troubleshooting & Maintenance individual day of Complete course (July 2012).

"I really enjoyed the course coverage and the enthusiasm of the presenters. Honestly, I am really happy I attended the course. Very worthwhile." Delphine Oben, PhD Research Associate at The Open University (July 2012).

"Lots of detail, but presented in a relaxed, informal way, so the 5 days passed quickly. Also great personal experiences related, so although the course was theory-based, we got a useful practical perspective." James Mortimer, Research Student at The Open University (July 2012).

"Overview of the GC System; each part was explained in detail. I enjoyed [learning about] all the information that I have to be aware of if I analyse samples. [The course] was really good. The course instructor was presenting very well and gave examples of real life situations." Analyst, Nutrition Research (April 2012).

"The first 3 days were really informative. Knowledgeable and enthusiastic trainer (good stories, examples, experiences). Small group and thus a lot of personal attention. All very interesting!" Lydia Bossers, PhD student at the University of Glamorgan (April 2012).

"There was enough time to ask questions if not completely sure about something, or if I didn’t understand something for the first time. It was a good summary of techniques and theoretical background + useful tables summarizing the data. I can use these for future reference!" Synthetic Chemistry Technician (April 2012).

"Completeness of content; well presented material which can act as future reference as well. Troubleshooting aspects will prove invaluable in the future, reducing issues and downtime." Paul Wood, Project Engineer at Land Rover Jaguar (April 2012).

"The course is generally well organized, educative, informative and well packaged. The interactive nature of the course made it outstanding." Nwachukivu Charles Uchenna, Assistant Director Laboratory Services at NAFDAC Nigeria (April 2012).

"All the basics were explained really well and illustrated with practical examples. I feel that I am better able to make decisions when analysis or trying to adjust a current method." Senior Radiation Protection Scientist (April 2012). 

"Some experience of GC would be good before attending - a lot of information is presented and is easier to follow if you have basic idea of GC. Very good notes. Lots of useful information about method development and important parameters to think about which you don't get with the training provided by manufacturers - a push button course (e.g. volume of inlet liner)." Laboratory Technician, Chemical Engineering.

"Very useful to design an instrument for particular applications; this should be more extensive in future courses taught. To go through all instrumentation components was very useful. Suggestions for equipment maintenance and method optimisation was of great value for equipment procurement." Lab Manager, Energy Industry.

"Instructors very passionate, very thorough information taught very well. This course is infused with a "can do" and "want to do" attitude; tackling the installation of a sniffport to our 3rd GC is not as daunting anymore as before the course. But in a 5-day option, day 4 is a summary of days 1-3." Corinna Heuss, Analyst, Firmenich UK Ltd.

"A lot of material covered throughout the week." Patricia Callinan, Waters.

"The practical approach and the balance between the theory and practical was well thought through." Sanja Potgieter-Vermaak, lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University.

"Very thorough and well presented. Course notes and slides [were suited as] a great stepwise approach to the whole topic." Analyst, Pharmaceutical Industry