This course deals with the preparation, characterization, behavior and properties of polymer nanocomposites, with an emphasis on the most commercially relevant systems to date, as well as new developments in the field. The major preparation routes to these materials are discussed, with an emphasis on the importance not only of dispersion but of true thermodynamic compatibility in these systems. From there, the focus shifts to describe the consequences of nanocomposite structure in terms of both molecular behavior and macroscopic properties, as informed by the most up-to-date research literature available. Case studies of specific systems will serve as opportunities to gain deeper understanding, and the safety issues surrounding nanoparticle handling will also be presented. Finally, current research by invited lecturers working in the field will be presented as time permits.