A Level Chemistry

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What Board do we do? Edexcel 

What is Chemistry? 
Imagine a world without anaesthetics, detergents, painkillers, dyes for fabrics, shampoo, antioxidants in jams and fruit squashes, PVC insulation for copper electrical wiring, bleaches, fuels, insecticides….unthinkable and undesirable in equal measure. At David Game College, our approach to the teaching of Chemistry is to present it as a dynamic, exciting and intellectually stimulating subject, whilst at all times paying full attention to the demands of the relevant examination specifications. Attention to detail and academic rigour have become bywords for these courses.

Students study Chemistry to Advanced Level at David Game College in order to gain entry to careers in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and many other fields not involving Chemistry directly, but in which students benefit from having been exposed to the intellectual discipline and logic of the subject.

Our teaching style attempts to combine the best aspects of traditional and modern approaches; for example, our A Level one-year intensive courses are enhanced by numerous teacher demonstrations which are in addition to the hands-on practical work which is undertaken by the student. Chemistry – like classical music – is an acquired taste and it is our belief that successful, fulfilled students of the subject are those who enjoy their chemistry rather than endure it. We do everything possible to promote this feeling amongst the students we teach.

Our Chemistry team make the maximum possible use of past paper questions as the basis for worked examples, regular written homework assignments and, most important of all, timed tests which are staged every two to three weeks. In addition, full-scale trial examinations are set at the appropriate times of the academic year.

AS / A Level
The new AS and A Levels in Chemistry are stand-alone linear qualifications, where marks gained at AS Level do not contribute to the final A Level grade in any shape or form. Hence the concept of A2 disappears completely.

The new AS Level examination in Chemistry will comprise two written papers; Papers 1 and 2 will each consist of a mixture of multiple choice (minimum 10, maximum 15 questions per paper), and structured questions; the A Level will involve three papers – all featuring a mixture of multiple choice questions and structured questions demanding both short and extended answers, plus questions specifically designed to test familiarity with and understanding of laboratory questions.

At David Game College we are following the Edexcel specifications; the examination structure is as follows :

AS level (subject code 8CH0) : first examination May / June 

Paper 1            (8CH0/01)       Core Inorganic and Physical Chemistry

                        1 hr 30 min      50% of the total marks available

Paper 2            (8CH0/02)       Core Organic and Physical Chemistry

                        1 hr 30 min      50% of the total marks available

A level (subject code  9CH0) : first examination May / June 

Paper 1            (9CH0/01)       Advanced Inorganic and Physical Chemistry

                        1 hr 45 min      30% of the total marks available

Paper 2            (9CH0/02)       Advanced Organic and Physical Chemistry

                        1 hr 45min       30% of the total marks available

Paper 3            (9CH0/03)       General & Practical Principles in Chemistry

                          2 hr 30 min      40% of the total marks available

The A Level will feature many topics covered in the AS, only to far greater depth. Examples: chemical kinetics and chemical equilibrium are covered qualitatively at AS Level and quantitatively at A Level.

The new A Level (but not AS) specification in Chemistry makes direct references to 16 “core practicals”  which candidates will be expected to carry out – many of the new-style written questions will assume familiarity with the core practicals. Having said that, it would also be difficult to answer some of the questions at AS Level with no exposure to practical work and / or carefully selected teacher demonstrations, and this is an issue which our teaching style addresses.

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