Skip to content ↓

A level Chemistry Years 12 & 13

Specification

OCR Chemistry - The specification and assessment structure can be found at the link: https://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/as-a-level-gce/chemistry-a-h032-h432-from-2015/specification-at-a-glance/

What do I need to know or be able to do before taking this course?

The qualification builds on the knowledge, understanding and process skills inherent in GCSE.  Successful students in A Level Chemistry would have received a GCSE Grade 7 in Chemistry and a GCSE Grade 6 in Mathematics.

What will I learn on this A level course?

The qualification aims to:

  • Stimulate and sustain students’ interest in, and enjoyment of Chemistry.
  • Enables students to gain a knowledge and understanding of Chemistry appropriate to AS/A Level and to appreciate the inter-linking patterns which are a distinguishing feature of the subject.
  • Show the inter-relationship between the development of the subject and its application (social, economic, environmental and technological) and recognise the value of Chemistry to society and how it may be used responsibly.
  • Develop students’ skills in laboratory procedures and techniques.
  • Develop students’ ability to acquire knowledge by means of practical work.
  • Provide opportunities for students to bring together knowledge of how different areas of Chemistry relate to each other.

For What kind of student is this qualification suitable?

This qualification is suitable for students who:

  • Have an interest in, and enjoyment of Chemistry.
  • Enjoy carrying out investigation by the application of imaginative, logical and critical thinking.
  • Want to use Chemistry to support other qualifications or progress onto further studies.
  • Are willing to work hard and consistently from day one.

Methods of teaching & learning

In Chemistry you will be taught by a variety of methods, involving listening, reading, watching, discussing, researching and doing experimental work. You will learn, to various extents, from each of these approaches, but you will not learn sufficiently well unless you devote sufficient time outside class to thorough, independent study. You will be taught by two teachers who will focus on the different aspects of the syllabus. We provide home access to an e-book specifically designed with the new examination format in mind as well as loan access to traditional textbooks.

Topics covered in the A Level syllabus

  • Practical skills.
  • Atomic structure and bonding.
  • Acids and redox.
  • Periodicity.
  • Energy, rates and equilibria.
  • Organic chemistry and analysis.
  • Transition elements.
  • Equilibrium constants and pH.
  • Energy and entropy.
  • Fuel cells.
  • Advanced organic chemistry and spectroscopic analysis.

How can I develop my full range of skills by doing this qualification?

As well as covering advanced level study of Chemistry, this course will enable you to develop some Key Skills, which will be essential to you whatever you go on to do afterwards.  The Key Skills you can develop during this course are:

  • Communication.
  • Application of number.
  • Information technology.
  • Problem solving.
  • Working with others.
  • Improving own learning and performance.

How will I be assessed on this course?

The A Level will be assessed by completing three written examinations:

  • Periodic table, elements and physical chemistry (37% of the qualification)
  • Synthesis and analytical techniques (37% of the qualification)
  • Unified chemistry (26% of the qualification)

A Level candidates will also be awarded a Practical Endorsement by their teachers on a pass/fail basis. This will be awarded based on evidence collected from a large series of specifically designed practical assessments completed over the two years. The skills learned during these practical assessments will also be assessed in all written examinations.

What could I go on to do at the end of my course?

Follow a degree course in Chemistry, Environmental Science, Medicine or Pharmacy. 

Follow a Higher National programme in Chemical Science.

Careers in Pharmacy or Biotechnology.

Year 12

  Topic Further details about the topic Skills
Autumn Term
1 Module 2 - Foundations in chemistry [Atomic structure]

Atoms and reactions

Atomic structure and isotopes

Relative mass

Compounds, formulae and equations

Amount of substance

Acids

Redox

Electrons, bonding and structure

The periodic table - periodicity

Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
2

Module 2 - Foundations in chemistry [Amount of substance]

Module 3 - Periodic table and energy

Atoms and reactions

Atomic structure and isotopes

Relative mass

Compounds, formulae and equations

Amount of substance

Acids

Redox

Electrons, bonding and structure

The periodic table - periodicity

Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
Spring Term
1 Module 3 - Periodic table and energy

Group 2

The halogens

Qualitative analysis

Enthalpy changes

Reaction rates

Chemical equilibrium

Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
2 Module 4 - Core organic chemistry

Basic concepts and hydrocarbons  - Alkanes - Alkenes - Alcohols, haloalkanes and analysis

Organic synthesis

Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
Summer Term
1 Module 4 - Core organic chemistry. Continued

Basic concepts and hydrocarbons  - Alkanes - Alkenes - Alcohols, haloalkanes and analysis

Organic synthesis

Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
2

Module 6 - Organic chemistry and analysis

Module  5 - Kinetics and equilibria

An extension of Module 4; Aromatic compounds - carboxylic acids and esters - organic nitrogen compounds - polymerisation - synthetic organic chemistry - modern analytical techniques

This module provides a context for synoptic assessment and the subject content links strongly with the content encountered in Module 2: Foundations in chemistry and Module 3: Periodic table and energy.
Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.

Year 13

  Topic Further details about the topic Skills
Autumn Term
1 Module 6 - carbonyls, amines and polymers An extension of Module 4; Aromatic compounds - carboxylic acids and esters - organic nitrogen compounds - polymerisation - synthetic organic chemistry - modern analytical techniques Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
2 Module 6 - analysis and synthesis An extension of Module 4; Aromatic compounds - carboxylic acids and esters - organic nitrogen compounds - polymerisation - synthetic organic chemistry - modern analytical techniques Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
Spring Term
1 Module 5 -Physical chemistry: acids, buffers, rate orders and equilibria This module provides a context for synoptic assessment and the subject content links strongly with the content encountered in Module 2: Foundations in chemistry and Module 3: Periodic table and energy. New topic covered include: rate equations, orders of reaction, the rate determining step; equilibrium constants, Kc and Kp; acid–base equilibria including pH, Ka and buffer solutions; lattice enthalpy and Born–Haber cycles; entropy and free energy; electrochemical cells; redox chemistry and transition elements. Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
2 Module 5 -Physical chemistry: thermodynamics, entropy and fuel cells This module provides a context for synoptic assessment and the subject content links strongly with the content encountered in Module 2: Foundations in chemistry and Module 3: Periodic table and energy. New topic covered include: rate equations, orders of reaction, the rate determining step; equilibrium constants, Kc and Kp; acid–base equilibria including pH, Ka and buffer solutions; lattice enthalpy and Born–Haber cycles; entropy and free energy; electrochemical cells; redox chemistry and transition elements. Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.
Summer Term
1 Module 5 - transition elements and redox titrations This module provides a context for synoptic assessment and the subject content links strongly with the content encountered in Module 2: Foundations in chemistry and Module 3: Periodic table and energy. New topic covered include: rate equations, orders of reaction, the rate determining step; equilibrium constants, Kc and Kp; acid–base equilibria including pH, Ka and buffer solutions; lattice enthalpy and Born–Haber cycles; entropy and free energy; electrochemical cells; redox chemistry and transition elements. Module 1 - Development of practical skills in chemistry. Practical chemistry will involve following instructions, working with chemicals safely and efficiently, making and recording measurements and observations, performing calculations on data and evaluating experimental methods and results.

Assessments

Resources Topic Type of assessment
CAT 1 Parts of OCR Chemistry modules 1 & 2 2 written papers [past exam questions]
CAT 2 OCR Chemistry Module 1 and parts of Module 2 Written paper[past exam questions]
CAT 3 Physical, organic and inorganic chemistry

End of year Mock Exam

2 papers

CAT 4 a. Energetics, kinetics and equilibria
b. Organic synthesis
2 written tests
CAT 5 Mock examination 2 papers
CAT 6 Mock examination  

Main Resources

Resource Details Term
Recommended reading   All
Recommended websites Chemistry Websites All
Equipment   All

Enrichment opportunities

Activity Day and time or term
   

Where Next