Chemistry: A Level


Exam board: OCR

What is the course about?

Chemistry is one of the most exciting and challenging A levels. It will help you develop an understanding of how the chemical elements interact and the role they play in making up our world and beyond. The course will demonstrate the relevance of science beyond the laboratory and will advance your practical, analytical, evaluative and synoptic skills. Doing AS chemistry at Leyton Sixth Form College is a highly rewarding experience with students studying the subject achieving better results than the comparative national average.

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Duration of course:

2 years.


What units/topics will be studied?

Module 1 – Development of practical skills in chemistry Practical skills assessed in a written examination and practical endorsement

Module 2 – Foundations in chemistry Atoms, compounds, molecules and equations, Amount of substance, Acid–base and redox reactions, Electrons, Bonding and structure

Module 3 – Periodic table and energy The periodic table and periodicity, Group 2 and the halogens, Qualitative analysis, Enthalpy changes, Reaction rates and equilibrium

Module 4 – Core organic chemistry Basic concepts, Hydrocarbons, Alcohols and haloalkanes, Organic synthesis, Analytical techniques

Module 5 – Physical chemistry and transition elements Reaction rates and equilibrium, pH and buffers, Enthalpy, entropy and free energy, Redox and electrode potentials, Transition elements

Module 6 – Organic chemistry and analysis. Aromatic compounds, Carbonyl compounds, Carboxylic acids and esters, Nitrogen compounds, Polymers, Organic synthesis, Chromatography and spectroscopy


What do I need to study this subject?

You need a grade 6 in Maths and 5 English language as well as 6/6 in Double Science. You also need an average GCSE score of 34 or above.


What can I do to prepare myself to study this subject?

All the resources you will need can be found here: These books will provide an insight to advanced chemistry: Periodic Tales: The Curious Lives of the Elements (Hugh Aldersey-William) Molecules (Peter W. Atkin).


Where can this lead me?

Chemistry is highly valued by universities and employers as a subject that prepares candidates in critical thinking and the ability to reason out or explain data. You can progress on to degree courses in Chemistry, Medicine (a vital requirement), Dentistry, Pharmacy, Chemical Engineering, Biomedical Sciences, Biochemistry and many other courses.


What are the enrichment opportunities as part of this subject?

Royal Society of Chemistry career workshops, Royal Institution science exhibition lectures, hands on UCL spectroscopy experience, Spectroscopy in a suitcase activities, Royal College of surgeons lectures and skills workshops and student exchange visit to Germany.