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Chemistry AS and A Level at Queen Elizabeth Grammar School Penrith

Course description

Roughly equal time is devoted to each of the three main branches of the subject: physical chemistry - the study of the underlying atomic and molecular principles; organic chemistry - which deals with the behaviour of substances based on carbon (thus with all substances of biological importance); and inorganic chemistry - which covers all the remaining elements, with an emphasis on the properties of the metals.

Course content

Subject Content
3.1 Physical chemistry
3.1.1 Atomic structure
3.1.2 Amount of substance
3.1.3 Bonding
3.1.4 Energetics
3.1.5 Kinetics
3.1.6 Chemical equilibria, Le Chatelier’s principle and Kc
3.1.7 Oxidation, reduction and redox equations
3.1.8 Thermodynamics (A level only)
3.1.9 Rate equations (A level only)
3.1.10 Equilibrium constant K p for homogeneous systems (A level only)
3.1.11 Electrode potentials and electrochemical cells (A level only)
3.1.12 Acids and bases (A level only)
3.2 Inorganic chemistry
3.2.1 Periodicity
3.2.2 Group 2, the alkaline earth metals
3.2.3 Group 7(17), the halogens
3.2.4 Properties of Period 3 elements and their oxides (A level only)
3.2.5 Transition metals (A level only)
3.2.6 Reactions of ions in aqueous solution (A level only)
3.3 Organic chemistry
3.3.1 Introduction to organic chemistry
3.3.2 Alkanes
3.3.3 Halogenoalkanes
3.3.4 Alkenes
3.3.5 Alcohols
3.3.6 Organic analysis
3.3.7 Optical isomerism (A level only)
3.3.8 Aldehydes and ketones (A level only)
3.3.9 Carboxylic acids and derivatives (A level only)
3.3.10 Aromatic chemistry (A level only)
3.3.11 Amines (A level only)
3.3.12 Polymers (A level only)
3.3.13 Amino acids, proteins and DNA (A level only)
3.3.14 Organic synthesis (A level only)
3.3.15 Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (A level only)
3.3.16 Chromatography (A level only)

Entry requirements

We would normally expect you to have achieved at least a grade A at GCSE to be able to study this course. The course has some mathematical content and you should be comfortable with handling chemical calculations involving moles and general rearrangement of formula. A grade B or above in mathematics would suggest this.


Assessment of A level chemistry is in three papers in addition to the assessed practical tasks throughout the course.

Future opportunities

Chemistry provides a stimulating and rewarding study in its own right. A background in the subject is invaluable to those who are planning careers in engineering, materials science or metallurgy, geology, mining or the biological sciences. A knowledge of Chemistry is essential for the successful study of medicine or veterinary science.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Queen Elizabeth Grammar School Penrith directly.

Last updated date: 15 August 2016

Key information


  • More information
    • The school was founded by Royal Charter in 1564. It was formerly situated in the centre of Penrith near St. Andrew's Church, but moved to the new buildings on its present site in 1915. The main school was extended in 1937 and 1958. The Donald Fay Memorial Building consisting of four Technology rooms and two Information Technology rooms was completed by September 1995 and a new building providing six Science laboratories, four Mathematics rooms and another Technology room was opened in July 1998. In November 2001, the Peter Kremer Sports Hall and four English rooms were completed. Further building work in 2004, 2009 and 2014 has provided additional office space and four classrooms. The extensive playing fields are adjacent to the school.