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An average Attainment 8 score of 5.5 as well as a Grade 5 in English Language or Literature and a Grade 6 in Maths. In addition, a 7 in Chemistry and 6 in 2 other separate sciences is required if you have taken Triple Science, or Grade 7s in Trilogy Combined Science.
There is a huge difference in the amount of time you will need to devote to your A Level studies compared to GCSE. You should spend at least one hour after every lesson consolidating your learning, assessing what you have learnt during that lesson and what you need to review with your teacher next lesson. This is in addition to any independent learning, assessed work and practical tasks that will be set.
You should have your own lab coat, goggles, a scientific calculator and a subject revision guide/text book.
Why study Chemistry at A Level?
The aim of the Chemistry teaching is to raise awareness of the subject as well as a solid understanding of the principles involved. Chemistry ties together so many facets of our lives, both scientific and every day. An understanding and appreciation of the subject provides many with a new outlook on an ever changing world.
Chemistry at A Level is a crucial requirement of many scientific degrees – from Medicine and Dentistry to Chemical Engineering and Pharmacy. Chemistry can stand alone as a science subject and is also complementary to Geography, Maths and Psychology in addition to its partners Biology and Physics.
You will study three units in Year 12, some of these topics will be studied in more depth during Year 13. The units are: -
- Physical Chemistry – Builds on what you learn at GCSE about the structure of the atom and chemical calculations providing a firm grounding on which to build the A Level chemistry course.
- Organic Chemistry – This is the study of organic molecules (those containing hydrogen and carbons) which are usually found in living organisms.
- Inorganic Chemistry – This is the study of non-organic molecules and includes metallic as well as non-metallic compounds.
You will also take part in a number of practical experiments as part of your course, 6 of these in Year 12 and a further 6 in Year 13 which will be properly written up. You could be questioned on these practical assignments in the written examinations.
How will you be assessed?
You will sit three written exams at the end of Year 13. The first will cover part of the Physical Chemistry unit as well as all of the Organic Chemistry topics. The second will cover the remaining Physical Chemistry topics as well as the Inorganic Chemistry unit. The third paper will cover parts of all of the topics that have been studied over the two years as well as the 12 practical assignments that have been studied. Again the examinations are made up of a mixture of multiple choice, short answer and longer structured questions. At the end of the full A Level you will achieve an A Level Chemistry grade as well as a Pass/Fail grade based on their practical skills.
Exam Board: AQA