The Chemistry Department aims to inform, stimulate and challenge pupils of all abilities, providing them with the opportunities necessary to improve skills that will be useful not just in their academic careers but also in everyday life.

  • To give pupils a sound foundation of chemical knowledge and the skills needed to apply this in new and changing situations in a range of contexts.
  • To enable pupils to develop a range of practical skills which will not only assist with their Chemistry, but also contribute to their overall life skills.
  • To stimulate curiosity and develop skills of enquiry, methodology and evaluation.
  • To make the study of Chemistry a worthwhile and enjoyable experience, enabling pupils to develop an interest in, and understanding of, its application to the world in which we live.
  • To equip students to organise and present information clearly and logically, using appropriate Chemical terms and conventions and ICT where appropriate.


Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3 Chemistry is taught as part of a general Science programme.

Topic covered at Key Stage 3 include

–      Permanent and Temporary Changes

–      Properties of Materials

–      Elements, Compounds and Mixtures

–      Structure and Uses of Materials

–      Periodic Table

–      Chemical Reactions

–      Everyday Chemistry


Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4 Chemistry is studied as part of the Core Science and Additional Science specification.

Chemistry is also taught as a separate GCSE in which students follow the AQA specification.

The course is comprised of three units: 

Unit 1: Core Chemistry Unit 2: Additional Chemistry Unit 3: Separate Chemistry
– The fundamental ideas in chemistry
– Limestone and building materials
– Metals and their uses- Crude oil and fuels
– Other useful substances from crude oil
– Plant oils and their uses
– Changes in the Earth and its atmosphere 
– Structure and Bonding
– How structure influences the properties and uses of
– Atomic structure, analysis and quantitative chemistry
– Rates of reaction
– Exothermic and endothermic reactions
– Acids, bases and salts
– Electrolysis
– The periodic table
– Water
– Calculating and explaining energy changes
– Further analysis and quantitative chemistry
– The production of ammonia
– Alcohols, carboxylic acids and esters
In year 12 students will complete a controlled assessment that is based on some of the topics studied during the course. (25% of final grade)


A-Level Chemistry

The course builds on the concepts and skills that will have been developed in the GCSE Core and Additional Science, or GCSE Chemistry.  Interested students should achieve a minimum GCSE grade BB or above in Core and Additional Science or a grade B or above in GCSE Chemistry.  You will need good mathematical skills for AS and A2 Chemistry.

What will I study at AS Level?

Module 1 Atomic Structure, Bonding and Periodicity
Module 2 Energetics, Kinetics, Redox and Organic Chemistry
Module 3 Investigative and Practical Skills

What will I study at A2 Level?

Module 4 Kinetics, Equilibria and Organic Chemistry
Module 5 Energetics, Redox and Inorganic Chemistry
Module 6 Investigative and Practical Skills

What careers could chemistry lead to?

Many of the jobs chemists do cross the boundaries between chemistry, biology and physics and many chemists work with other scientists, not to mention other professions in marketing, law, ICT and other areas.

Some examples are:
– Dentist
– Surgeon
– Chemical Engineer
– Vehicle Designer
– Food Scientist
– Meteorologist
– Food Scientist
– Journalist
– Accountant
– Nurse
– Cosmetic Scientist
– Lawyer
– Optometrist
– Pharmacist
– Teacher
– Environmental Chemist
– Biochemist
– Vet


Useful links

Online periodic table =

Royal Society of Chemistry =

QUB Chemistry and Chemical Engineering =

Chemistry careers =