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Chemistry at Gateshead College

Course description

Chemistry is the study of all chemical substances and how to change one chemical into another.

The food you eat, the air you breathe, your own body, your mobile phone, the plants and streets around you are made of chemicals.

As you want inexpensive products, chemistry helps to decrease economic costs, and as you want a safe environment, chemistry helps to decrease pollution by detecting the toxins, and by destroying them.

If you like logical problems, and thinking hard – really using your brain – then Chemistry is for you.  If you want to know what makes up the world around you, you are a natural chemist.

It is like seeing with new eyes all that is before you, within your food, on product labels, in cosmetics, in fuels, in the atmosphere, in the chemistry of life, and in the chemistry of the newest products.

Course content

The three main branches of Chemistry: Physical, Organic and Inorganic are covered through six modules.

As well as developing excellent laboratory techniques, you'll gain specific knowledge in the traditional fields of organic and inorganic chemistry.

As chemistry overlaps with other subjects, you'll pick up skills that are useful in biology and medicine, physics and engineering. Chemistry is also studied in an environmental and social context, so you'll gain awareness of its ethical implications and issues relating to environmental impact and sustainability.

Principally, you’ll develop strong mathematical/numerical skills. You'll also develop skills in analysis and problem-solving; time management and organisation; recording and monitoring data; and teamwork.

Practical work

You will carry out practical work will be run almost every week. You will be trained to follow instructions, use the apparatus, and to measure precisely. The joy of practical work is that it illustrates and proves the theory. This practical work will be assessed. The assessment mark will not be part of the final mark, though practical skills will be tested in the written papers, and a separate practical grade will be next to your A Level grade.

Entry requirements

  • 5 x GCSEs Grade A*- C at B grade average (including English Language and mathematics)

Future opportunities

More students are studying pure chemistry, or chemistry based subjects like medical chemistry, or environmental chemistry. If you want to join them then you must study chemistry at A Level, preferably with mathematics. A number of our own students have studied chemistry at university and went to gain PhDs.

AS or A Level Chemistry is particularly important if you want to study Medicine, Veterinary Science, Dentistry or Biochemistry at university. It is also appreciated by admissions tutors in many other subjects, including Law, due to its logical discipline.

It is useful if you want to go on and study subjects such as Geology, Physical Geography, Engineering, or Material Science. Many chemistry graduates are also recruited by the financial companies in the City of London, and so start with high starting salaries.

Studying Chemistry will also help you with the pyrotechnics in Theatre Studies and if you want to train in Art Conservation, knowledge of Chemistry is necessary.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Gateshead College directly.

Last updated date: 15 April 2016

Key information


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    • Gateshead College's Baltic Campus is located on the Gateshead quayside, just minutes from Newcastle City Centre and its attractions.

      The College is situated behind the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and The Sage Gateshead.

      The College has its own car park, but at busy times alternative parking is available nearby.

      There is a charge for parking. Students can apply for a permit to allow free parking during study time.