ZnO thin films were produced by the spin-coating sol-gel method on which the nanorods were grown by chemical bath deposition. The morphology of the thin films and nanorods were studied using field emission scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and the structure of the ZnO was determined by X-ray diffraction. It was found that the thin films comprised of randomly orientated particles (~57 nm in size) which covered the entire surface, although there were some voids visible in the films. The nanorods were found to have preferred orientation along the (002) direction, and this was confirmed by the SEM images which also indicated that the nanorods were of uniform size and height. Raman spectroscopy showed that both the thin films and the nanorods contained defects. The electrical properties of the thin films were studied before and after alpha particle irradiation.