We are constantly surrounded by chemistry and chemical reactions, without which we would cease to exist; from the air that we breathe and the food that we eat to the clothes we wear and fuels we use. It is a fascinating and enthralling subject that unravels the mysteries of why reactions occur and how we can use and manipulate these reactions to benefit mankind.

A-level Chemistry is divided into distinct areas of study in the form of organic chemistry; the study of products from crude oil, and inorganic chemistry which looks at the patterns and trends of reactions  and physical chemistry which is more mathematically based.

Two members of staff are allocated to each group and 10 hour-long lessons are provided every fortnight. In addition, comprehensive support is offered in lunchtime sessions for pupils that need extra help.

Students study the AQA specification which is assessed at the end of year 13 when pupils will take three, two hour examinations. Paper one examines physical and inorganic chemistry. Paper 2 examines physical and organic chemistry. Paper 3 examines all content. There is no separate practical assessment, but practical activities will be embedded in the course to demonstrate theories and develop experimental skills. Questions will be asked on all the written papers about the techniques and procedures encountered over the year.

You could continue to study chemistry at degree level—either broadly or specialising in one area. As a challenging A-level, you will need a level 8/9 (A* grade) at iGCSE ( or core and additional science at level 8/9/A* grade) to be accepted but universities always look upon it favourably for any medical or science based course. It is complemented by the study of biology, physics or maths.

“Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less”.

Marie Curie