Chemistry begins in the stars. The stars are the source of the chemical elements, which are the building blocks of matter and the core of our subject.
A-level Chemistry develops ideas from GCSE Science – adding extra detail and more complex models. Our course is grounded on developing your understanding and you will see how we can refine models we have for understanding the world around us, discovering flaws and putting the ‘why’ into the knowledge you have from GCSE level, as well as introducing new content that links with many of your GCSE topics.
Chemistry is fundamentally divided into physical, organic and inorganic ‘branches’. You will be taught topics from the three branches at the same time, allowing you to develop links between topics.
Content is in six modules:
Module 1 – Development of practical skills in chemistry – taught and assessed throughout the course
Module 2 – Foundations in chemistry – an introduction taught at the start of the course
Module 3 – Periodic table and energy
Module 4 – Core organic chemistry
Module 5 – Physical chemistry and transition elements
Module 6 – Organic chemistry and analysis
Exam Board and Specification
Exam board: OCR
Exam specification: OCR A H432
Please see the entry requirements document here
Is This Course Right For Me?
Chemistry is ideal if you are interested in developing a detailed understanding of why and how chemical reactions occur and the properties of matter. It would be a good choice if you enjoyed your GCSE course, in particular developing understanding of the subject rather than just learning ‘facts’. You will soon see how chemists have developed logical explanations for how processes occur in steps, breaking down what might have seemed to be impenetrable information at GCSE level. You’ll need to become a good practical chemist, carrying out procedures and investigations with skill, and you will be assessed on this as part of the course. Lessons are organised to allow for a huge variety of activities, and smaller group sizes allow us to develop ideas through discussion and problem solving in lessons in a less formal way than at GCSE – you’ll need to be an active student who is willing to think for yourself and to contribute to the class. You will need to have good mathematical skills, as many problems we solve are quantitative in nature. Chemistry is a complex subject, and very rewarding when you start to ‘get’ how everything we know about it really links together.
Please watch our short video to see what studying Chemistry at Guilsborough SIxth Form is like.
Chemistry has strengthened my analytical skills which I have used during my lab work experience
Josh, Year 13 Student
I love the PAGs (practical assessed tasks) included in the course as it helps me to understand the theory better
George, Year 13 Student
I enjoy how everything we learnt in GCSE has been built upon and now makes even more sense
Maddie, Year 13 Student
It’s so fascinating to see how logical systems combine and make up the universe
Jonah, Year 13 Student
Wanting to pursue a career in medicine, Chemistry is an important part of my studies. I have particularly enjoyed engaging in organic chemistry because I am able to transfer my skills of identifying functional groups to organic compounds to medical compounds that I have encountered in my job in a pharmacy. It is very satisfying how after doing some practice questions I can wrap my head around topics I initially found challenging
Katie, Year 13 Student
Where will A Level Chemistry take me past Sixth Form?
As well as careers in the Chemical research, education, analysis, manufacturing and engineering field, A Level Chemistry is an excellent base for a university degree and moving into a career in healthcare such as medicine, pharmacy and dentistry as well as the biological sciences, environmental sciences, physics, mathematics and pharmacology.
Chemistry is also taken by many law professionals as it shows you can cope with difficult concepts as well as providing vital understanding for specialising in patent law.
The problem solving skills are valued in many other areas, such as law, politics and finance, many chemistry graduates have had multiple roles across different industries, Chemistry opens the door to all of this.
Some examples of universities and their entry requirements to study Chemistry and other related degrees are:
Leicester University BSc (Hons) Chemistry typical offer ABB
Durham University BSc (Hons) Chemistry typical offer A*AA
Warwick University BSc (Hons) Chemistry typical offer AAB
Chemistry A level also enables students to access many other university courses as it is seen as a ‘facilitating subject’.