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A-Level Chemistry

The OCR A-Level Chemistry course is divided into topics, each covering different key concepts of chemistry. The teaching of practical skills is integrated with the theoretical topics and they are assessed both through written papers, and for A-Level only, the Practical Endorsement. Students wishing to study this subject need to have attained at least a grade A in this subject at GCSE. Students confirm whether they will be sitting the AS examinations or continuing to the full A-Level in the first half of Year 12.

Course Overview

The course is split into six modules. Modules 1 to 4 constitute the stand-alone AS level qualification; Modules 1 to 6, combined with the Practical Endorsement constitute the full A-Level.

Module

Title

Content

1

Development of Practical Skills

Skills of planning, implementing, analysis and evaluation

2

Foundations in Chemistry

  • Atoms, compounds, molecules and equations
  • Amount of substance
  • Acid-base and redox reactions
  • Electrons, bonding and structure

3

Periodic Table and Energy

  • The Periodic Table and periodicity
  • Groups 2 and the halogens
  • Qualitative Analysis
  • Enthalpy Changes
  • Reaction rates and equilibrium (qualitative)

4

Core Organic Chemistry

  • Basic Concepts
  • Hydrocarbons
  • Alcohols and haloalkanes
  • Organic Synthesis
  • Analytical Techniques

5

Physical Chemistry and Transition Elements

  • Reaction rates and equilibrium (quantitative)
  • pH and buffers
  • Enthalpy, entropy and free energy
  • Redox and electrode potentials
  • Transition elements

6

Organic Chemistry and Analysis

  • Aromatic Compounds
  • Carbonyl compounds
  • Carboxylic acids and esters
  • Nitrogen compounds
  • Polymers
  • Organic synthesis
  • Chromatography and spectroscopy (NMR)

 

 

Assessment

AS Chemistry

Both papers include synoptic assessment and assess content from all four of the AS modules.

Paper

Title and Description

Duration

Marks/Weighting

1

Breadth in Chemistry

Multiple Choice and structured questions covering theory and practical skills.

1 hr 30 mins

70/50%

2

Depth in Chemistry

Structured questions and extended response questions covering theory and practical skills

1 hr 30 mins

70/50%

 

A-Level Chemistry

All papers include synoptic assessment.

Paper

Title and Description

Duration

Marks/Weighting

1

Periodic Table, elements and physical chemistry

Multiple Choice and structured questions covering theory and practical skills. Assesses content from Modules 1,2,3 and 5

2 hr 15 mins

100/37%

2

Synthesis and analytical techniques

Structured questions and extended response questions covering theory and practical skills. Assesses content from Modules 1,2,4 and 6

2 hr 15 mins

100/37%

3

Unified Chemistry

Structured questions and extended response questions covering theory and practical skills. Assesses content from all modules (i.e., 1 to 6).

1 hr 30 mins

70/26%

Non-exam assessment

Practical Endorsement for chemistry

Candidates demonstrate practical competence through a minimum of 12 practical activities

 

Pass or Fail/Reported separately

 

Associated Careers

  • Analytical chemist
  • Biochemist
  • Chemical Engineer
  • Clinical Biochemist
  • Crystallographer
  • Dentist
  • Doctor
  • Environmental chemist
  • Forensic chemist
  • Health and Safety Adviser
  • Marine chemist
  • Medical laboratory scientist
  • Pharmaceutical chemist
  • Research chemist
  • Science teacher
  • University lecturer
  • Vet

Other careers which can be accessed via the chemical sciences include:

  • Accountant
  • Biotechnologist
  • Civil Servant
  • Food scientist
  • Materials scientist
  • Molecular biologist
  • Physiotherapist
  • Toxicologist